Top 20 Old Hollywood Actors You Must Remember

old Hollywood actors

The Golden Age of Hollywood has given us such wonderful movies and stories that have stayed with us ever since. And with those iconic movies, we got to see charismatic old Hollywood actors and iconic actresses of all time. 

These are the old Hollywood actors that we should always remember for the rest of our lives for their brilliant screen presence and charisma. So if you are unaware of these brilliant icons of the entertainment industry, then let us scroll down and get to know them. 

Old Hollywood Actors You Must Remember

Most of the actors in the list down below ruled the film industry during the 20th century and had given such the classic Hollywood films that we are so fond of nowadays. 

So let me show you the handsome old Hollywood actors who are on the list of the Greatest Male Stars of All Time. 

1. James Stewart

James Stewart
Born James Mailand Stewart,
May 20, 1908,
Died – July 2, 1997 (age 89)
Active Years1932 – 1991
Famous forHarvey, It’s a Wonderful World, Vertigo

James Stewart born in Indiana, of Scottish and English descent, was an American stage and film actor with decorated military rankings. He was in contract with MGM and also had a military ranking of a Brigadier General in the US Air Force during World War II and the Vietnam War. 

He worked with directors like Alfred Hitchcock, Billy Wilder, John Ford, and Anthony Mann. Having a long list of classic movies under his name, such as Mr. Smith Goes To Washington, The Man Who Knew Too Much, and The Philadelphia Story. 

James Stewart is considered among the finest actors during the “Golden Age of Hollywood.” Along with that, he was named the “Third Greatest Male Star of all Time” by American Film Institute.

2. Spencer Tracy

Spencer Tracy
Born Spencer Tracy,
April 5, 1900,
Died – June 10, 1967 (age 67)
Active Years1921 – 1967
Famous forWoman of the Year, Captain’s Courage, Boy’s Town

Known as the ninth Greatest Male star of All Time. Just like James Stewart, he also had a military career before stepping into Hollywood. Along with his classmate Pat O’Brien, he enlisted in the US Navy during World War I. 

After he completed his studies in acting, he appeared in many different plays on Broadway. Tracy made his movie debut with The Last Mile by John Ford. Then he began his brief contract with Fox Film Corporation, then joined Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer; this is when his career flourished.  

He won two Academy Awards with films like Boys Town and also Captain’s Courage. He also received 12 Oscar nominations for the movie Father of the Bride(1950). 

3. Marlon Brando

Marlon Brando
Born Marlon Brando Jr. 
April 3rd, 1924,
Died- July 1st, 2004 (age 80)
Active Years1944 – 2004
Famous forThe Godfather, Superman, A Streetcar Named Desire

Known for some of the iconic roles in Hollywood Classic movies, such as Julius Caesar, The Godfather, A Streetcar Named Desire, Marlon Brando is a name known to all. Brando acted in movies for over half a century, leaving a significant impact on the film industry. 

For his exceptional acting style and technique of mumbling became notoriously famous. That he is the fourth Greatest Movie Star of All Time. The Times magazine, in 1999, designated him as the “Actor of the Century.” 

4. Cary Grant

Cary Grant
Born Archibald Aleo Leach (Cary Grant),
January 18, 1904,
Died- November 29, 1986 (age 82)
Active Years1922 – 1966
Famous forAn Affair To Remember, The Philadelphia Story, Charade

He was designated with the title of the second Greatest Male Star of All Time. Cary Grant had a debonair demeanor with great comic timing and a light-hearted acting approach which made him one of the classic leading men of Hollywood, with definite looks, charming, and charismatic, handsome features. 

Being of English-American heritage, he had a very distinctive MId-Atlantic accent, his career skyrocketed with films like She Done Him Wrong, The Awful Truth, The Philadelphia Story, Notorious, An Affair to Remember, and Charade. 

5. Fred Astaire

Fred Astaire
Born Frederick Austerlitz,
May 10th, 1899,
Died- June 22, 1987 (age 88)
Active Years1904 – 1981
Famous forTop Hat, Swing Time, Shall We Dance

Known as the greatest dancer in film history, Fred Astaire, had uncanny rhythm and perfectionism when it comes to dancing. This is the reason why he acted in more than 31 musical movies and over 10 West End and Broadway musicals. 

Other than being designated the fifth Greatest Male Star of All Time, Astaire was also a famous singer. Songs like Something’ Gotta Give, The Way You Look Tonight, and One for My Baby are very popular. 

6. Henry Fonda

Henry Fonda
Born Henry Jaynes Fonda,
May 16, 1905,
Died- August 12, 1982 (age 77)
Active Years1928 – 1982
Famous forThe Grapes of Wrath, On Golden Pond, The Lady Eve. 

One of the most soft-spoken and remarkable actors in Hollywood, Henry Fonda, started his career as a Broadway actor. After coming to Hollywood, he gained success after starring in the movie The Grapes of Wrath. 

Henry Fonda stayed in the acting business for over six decades and gave some exemplary performances that gained him the title of the sixth Greatest Male Star of All Time. 

He has movies like Ox-Bow Incident, Mister Roberts and 12 Angry Men, Once Upon A Time In The West, Yours, Mine and Ours, and also Midway. 

7. Humphrey Bogart

Humphrey Bogart
Born Humphrey DeForest Bogart,
December 25th, 1899,
Died- January 14th, 1957 (age 57)
Active Years1921 – 1956
Famous forCasablanca, Sabrina, To Have and Have Not

Nicknamed Bogie, became a cultural icon in America. Humphrey Bogart was designated the title of Greatest Male Star in the history of American History. Beginning his career with Broadway, after the Stock Market crash in the year 1929, he turned towards the film industry. 

Bogart’s short approximately thirty years of acting year gave us such amazing films like Casablanca, Sabrina, To Have and Have Not, The African Queen, and The Treasures of the Sierra Madre.  

8. James Cagney

James Cagney
Born James Francis Cagney Jr. 
July 17th, 1899,
Died- March 30th, 1986 (age 86)
Active Years1919 – 1961, 1981 – d.
Famous forThe Public Enemy, The Roaring Twenties, Taxi

The “tough guy” of Hollywood was an accomplished dancer and a very private person in real life. Starring in movies like The Public Enemy, Cagney gained notable recognition for being the most influential Gangster film of the period.  

Because of movies like Angels with Dirty Faces, Yankee Doodle Dandy, and Love Me or Leave Me, he was given the title of eighth Greatest Male Star of All Time. 

9. Richard Burton

Richard Burton
Born Richard Walter Jenkins Jr. 
November 10th, 1925
Died- August 5th, 1984 (age 58)
Active Years1943 – 1984
Famous forWho’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? 

Other than being a brilliant actor post-WWII, Burton is best remembered for his highly turbulent and controversial relationship with Elizabeth Taylor. Their on-again and off-again relationship were always highly publicized. More so since they married twice. 

For being the recipient of numerous Tony Awards and BAFTA Awards, and six times nominated for an Academy Award, he was the highest-paid actor at one point. 

 10. Charlie Chaplin

Charlie Chaplin
Born Charles Spencer Chaplin Jr. 
April 16th, 1889
Died- December 25th, 1977
Active Years1899 – 1975
Famous forThe Gold Rush, Modern Times, City Lights, The Great Dictator

George Bernard Shaw called Charlie Chaplin, “the only genius to come out of the movie industry.” Sir Charles Spencer “Charlie” Chaplin was one of the most iconic, creative, and recognizable personalities in the film industry during the silent era. His persona of the Little Tramp is one of the iconic characters of all time. 

His use of mime, visual comedy, and slapstick became hugely popular. But being a giant in the entertainment industry comes with controversies and scandals, along with adulation. He gave the world relief with laughter and comedy during the period of both World Wars. 

Chaplin has been designated the title of the tenth Greatest Male Star Of All Time. For his ability to bring a war-torn world together with comedy and laughter. 

 11. Clark Gable

Clark Gable
Born William Clark Gable,
February 1st, 1902,
Died- November 16, 1960. 
Active Years1918 – 1960
Famous forGone With The Wind, It Happened One Night, Mutiny On The Bounty

Popularly known as “The King Of Hollywood,” Clark Gable was given the title of the seventh Greatest Male Star Of All Time. Throughout his film career, Gable was paired with the biggest actresses of that time. 

His last film, The Misfits, opposite Marilyn Monroe, was released after his death, which was coincidentally her last screen appearance as well. 

 12. Richard Harris

Richard Harris
Born Richard St.John Francis Harris,
October 1st, 1930,
Died- October 25th, 2002 (age 72)
Active Years1956 – 2002
Famous forHarry Potter, The Count of Monte Cristo, Gladiator

Harris is a man of many talents along with being a great actor, he is also a singer, film director, writer, songwriter, and theatrical producer. He is best known for his role as King Arthur in Camelot. 

His appearance as Albus Dumbledore in the first two Harry Potter movies, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone and the Chamber of Secrets, earned him worldwide recognition. 

He also starred in many classic films, such as Unforgiven, A Man Called Horse, and Gladiator. 

 13. Richard Widmark

Richard Widmark
Born Richard Weedt Wiidmark,
December 26th, 1914,
Died- March 24th, 2008 (age 93)
Active Years1938 – 2001
Famous forKiss of Death, Don’t Bother To Knock, The Alamo

Few people can establish themselves as an icon with their debut films like Richard Widmark, with the movie Kiss of Death. He established himself as the best villainous or anti-hero character in the industry. 

But later in his career, he went for more heroic roles as the leading male character. A few of his best movies are such as Slattery’s Hurricane, Panic in the Street, and The Tunnel of Love. 

 14. Peter O’Toole

Peter O’Toole
Born Peter Seamus O’Toole,
August 2nd, 1932,
Died- December 14th, 2013 (age 81)
Active Years1954 – 2012
Famous forHamlet, Lawrence of Arabia, The Lion in Winter

O’Toole found great success after acting in one of the best Hollywood Classics, Lawrence Of Arabia. Known for his “hellraiser” of a lifestyle, Peter O’Toole went on to become a highly-honored stage and film actor. 

With films like The Ruling Class, The Stunt Man, and Goodbye Mr.Chips, he holds the record for most Academy Awards nominations, although he never won one. 

 15. Sidney Poitier

Sidney Poitier
Born Sidney Poitier,
January 6th, 1927,
Died- January 6th, 2022 (age 94)
Active Years1946 – 2009
Famous forPorgy the Bear, A Raisin in the Sun, A Patch of Blue

Being a Bahaman and American actor, Sidney Poitier had to face a lot of difficulties growing up. But that didn’t stop him from living his dream of becoming an actor during a difficult time in America.  

With a film like The Defiant Ones, which received nine Academy Award nominations, Poitier became the first black actor to win an Academy Award in 1964. 

He starred in other great films like To Sir, with Love, In the Heart of the Night, and Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner. 

 16. James Dean 

James Dean
Born James Byron Dean
February 8th, 1931,
Died- September 30, 1955 (age 24)
Active Years1950 – 1955
Famous forRebel Without A Cause, East of Eden

One for the legendary cultural icons of the film industry, James Dean was not only just a stunningly handsome young man in his youth, but he was also an immensely talented actor. 

But his untimely death at the young age of 24 made Hollywood lose a rising star. He was one of the most handsome old Hollywood actors. 

The films by James Dean created a revolution then and still now among the youth Rebel Without A Cause, Giant, and East of Eden. He was the only actor who received two Academy Awards nominations after his death. 

 17. Robert Duvall

Robert Duvall
Born Robert Selden Duvall,
January 5th, 1931, (age 91)
Active Years1951 – present
Famous forTender Mercies, The Handmaid’s Tale, The Godfather

Spanning an impressive acting career for over seven decades, Robert Duvall is known as one of the Greatest American actors of all time. 

From acting in movies like To Kill A Mockingbird, MASH, True Confession, Apocalypse Now, The Godfather, and The Godfather Part I, Duvall left a huge impression in the industry. 

 18. Michael Caine

Michael Caine
Born Michael Joseph Micklewhite,
March 14th, 1933 (age 89)
Active Years1950 – present
Famous forDressed To Kill, The Dark Knight Trilogy, Inception

One of the British icons, Sir Michael Caine, is one of the best British actors and is known for his proper cockney accent. Appearing in more than 160 movies in a period of seven decades, Caine is one of the most respected and recognizable actors. 

Starring in films like Alfie, Get Carter, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Hannah, and Her Sister, The Cider House Rules, and The Dark Knight Trilogy. Caine is one of only two actors who got nominated for an Academy Award in every decade. 

 19. Sean Connery

Sean Connery
Born Thomas Connery, 
August 25th, 1930,
Died- October 31st, 2020 (age 90)
Active Years1954 – 2007, 2012
Famous forJames Bond films(7), Murder on the Orient Express, Highlander

The best way to describe this man is that he is Tall handsome and muscular maybe that is why he was the original James Bond and the best one. 

He’s the man that gave birth to the suave and dignified man with a License To Kill. With the major success of the first Bond film, Dr. No, Connery became a Sex Symbol. Was one of the most handsome old Hollywood actors. 

Other than Bond, Connery starred in movies like Dragonheart, The Hill, Marnie, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, and The Rock.  

 20. Frank Sinatra

Frank Sinatra
Born Francis Albert Sinatra,
December 12th, 1915,
Died- May 14th, 1998 (age 82)
Active Years1935 – 1995
Famous forThe Man with the Golden Arm, From Here to Eternity

Frank Sinatra was an American Actor, Singer, and Songwriter. He is among the best-selling music artists in the world, with over 150 million sales. 

Other than being a huge success in the music industry, he was a successful actor winning an Academy Award as well for From Here to Eternity. He also starred in other movies like The Manchurian Candidate.  

Wrapping Up!

There are more old Hollywood actors that are worthy to be remembered by all, but unfortunately, we couldn’t fit them all into this article. But nonetheless, tell us in the comment section who is your favorite old Hollywood actors.

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Nabamita Sinha