Learning English - Words in the News
13 November, 2006 - Published 16:43 GMT
Jack Palance dies aged 87
The actor Jack Palance has died at his home in California at the age of eighty-seven. He was nominated for an Oscar for the 1950s thriller 'Sudden Fear' but finally won an Oscar in 1992 for his part in the comedy 'City Slickers'. The BBC's Peter Bowes reports from Los Angeles:
With his chiselled face and calm deep voice, Jack Palance had a formidable screen presence. A former boxer, he got his break as an actor when he replaced Marlon Brando in the Broadway production of 'A Streetcar Named Desire'. The show's director, Elia Kazan, then chose him to play Blackie, a murderer in the film 'Panic in the Streets'.
Jack Palance received three Oscar nominations; two in the 1950s for the classic western 'Shane' and the film noir thriller 'Sudden Fear'. He finally won the award in 1992 for his role as the cowboy Curly in 'City Slickers'. It was during Palance's acceptance speech that he pulled his most famous stunt of all; he dropped to the ground and performed one-armed push-ups. Backstage, he was asked why:
"When I saw all these cameras down there looking at me, I thought, my God, you might win -- what the hell are you gonna do and when I left home a while ago, there I was on the floor doing a bunch of push-ups and so it seems like they've become part of my life ..."
Jack Palance often distanced himself from mainstream Hollywood. He once said most of the stuff he did was garbage and that most of the directors he'd worked with were incompetent.
Peter Bowes, BBC news, Los Angeles
a formidable screen presence
distanced himself from