Saturday, February 24, 2024

RiP Hal Holbrook, A Class Act Who Loved Acting, Nominated for an Oscar for “Into the Wild”


Hal Holbrook, whose death at 95 came yesterday, was an actor’s actor. He loved it. When I really got to know him, in 2008, for “Into the Wild,” he’d been mostly a stage and TV actor. He had lots of awards and was in early 80s. He’d had a lifetime of acclaim, but “Into the Wild” — as independent films sometimes do–propelled him into the movie awards universe. He wasn’t going to win. The Academy had been so ginned up about “No Country for Old Men” that Javier Bardem was on a bullet train to the big finale. But Hal did all the press, was a total gentleman, and a pleasure to get to know. His long list of credits and bio can be found elsewhere. But those moments stick in my head. RIP Hal.


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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