Special Sub-Topic: Is This the End of Rico?
|He was born Emanuel Goldenberg but in what country was he born?|
Romania. At the age of 10 his family migrated from Bucharest, Romania to New York City, where he grew up in a Jewish community. He became interested in acting and after graduating from City College of New York, went on to the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.
|Although often stereotyped as a gangster, Robinson played a wide variety of roles. Which of these roles did he NOT play?|
A Coca-Cola executive in "One,Two, Three" (1961). "One, Two, Three " was a James Cagney film. The others are films that show his depth of talent. The persistent claims adjuster, the manipulated mind reader, and the tender father to little Margaret O'Brien all are performances to be appreciated.
|During his acting career, for what film was he nominated for an Academy Award?|
He was never nominated. Robinson was recognized by the Academy for a lifetime of merit with an honorary Lifetime Achievement Award in 1973. This was ironic since he died two months before the award was presented. His performance in any of these three films deserved recognition.
|The movie quote most often ascribed to Robinson is: "Is this the end of Rico?" What was the name of the motion picture this is from?|
"Little Caesar" (1931). Robinson became stereotyped as a gangster in subsequent films but played a variety of roles up until his death, many highly dramatic. His character, Caesare "Rico" Bandello, was loosely based on Al Capone, a gangster in the headlines at the time. The complete quote, uttered near the end of the movie when he's shot dead: "Mother of mercy, is this the end of Rico?"
|What career setback did he receive during the years 1950 to 1953?|
Accused of communist leanings. Three times he was called to testify before the House Unamerican Activities Committee in the early 1950s. It cost him much time and money to clear his name. By that time he was on the Hollywood blacklist and directors and producers were reluctant to hire him.
|Although he was essentially blacklisted during the early 1950s, he did get a powerful part in a major motion picture. What Director had the courage to hire him?|
Cecil B. DeMille. As a part of clearing his name, he gave the HUAC the names of persons he felt were communist sympathizers. On one hand he lost roles because he had been accused of being a commie and other roles because he ratted out others. DeMille thought he was perfect for the role of the Dathan in "The Ten Commandments" and Robinson did not disappoint him, even though DeMille himself was firmly anti-communist.
|Robinson was noted as a collector. What did he collect?|
Modern art. Robinson was reputed to be have collected some of the finest examples of modern art. He was an intelligent urbane collector, respected by others.
|Robinson was second choice to play a role that won Marlon Brando an Oscar. What was that role?|
"The Godfather" (1972). Robinson was noted as a persuader in the sense that he sometimes talked his way into important roles. His glibness did not work here.
|What was the reason that he sold his famous collection?|
To pay for his divorce from Gladys Lloyd. Robinson was noted as a collector of modern art. The divorce proved costly to Robinson. At about the same time his son was having frequent conflicts with the law and had made several suicide attempts. Robinson career was revitalized at this time so he was working constantly.
|His last film role was in "Soylent Green" (1973) with Charleston Heston. How does he 'die' in the movie?|
Euthanized while watching a wall-sized television. His final film scene was prophetic as he was to die of cancer at 79 the same year.
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