R.I.P. Marlon Brando

By Garth Franklin Friday July 2nd 2004 11:51PM

The man, the myth, the legend - is gone. Marlon Brando, one of the signature stars of cinema has died aged 80 in a Los Angeles hospital according to his lawyer. Brando had been ill for some time, but the cause of death is being withheld in respect to his privacy.

Starring in over 40 films over the past several decades, Brando has lead a career any actor envies and became a man many admired. In later life he shunned publicity and fought battles with his weight, health, and endless rumours of his sometimes unusual work ethic.

Yet one can't really think of another actor who has left behind so many signature roles that it's hard to picture him as one particular character. Some remember him as the muscle bound brutish Stanley from 1951's "A Streetcar Named Desire", others will remember him as dock worker Terry Malloy in 1954's "On the Waterfront", the butter licking Paul of 1974's "Last Tango in Paris", the grey-haired father Jor-El of "Superman" in 1978, the mad Col. Kurtz in 1979's "Apocalypse Now", or his most iconic prescence - Don Vito Corleone in 1972's "The Godfather".

Over his time as an actor Brando scored eight Oscar nominations and two wins (for "Waterfront" and "Godfather"). Other notable screen credits include "Viva Zaputa", "Julius Caesar", "The Wild One", "Desiree", "Guys and Dolls", Sayonara", "The Young Lions", "Mutiny on the Bounty", "The Ugly American", "Queimada", "The Nightcomers", "The Missouri Breaks", "A Dry White Season", "Don Juan De Marco", "The Island of Dr. Moreau" and "The Score".

Brando leaves behind three wives, eleven children and a huge fanbase - all of whom our deepest condolensces go out to today.

Thanks to 'Graeme', 'Kenny', 'Stef'