Robards, Jason

▪ American actor
in full  Jason Nelson Robards, Jr. 
born July 26, 1922, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
died December 26, 2000, Bridgeport, Connecticut

      intense, introspective stage and film actor, widely regarded as the foremost interpreter of playwright Eugene O'Neill (O'Neill, Eugene).

      Because of the bitterness and disillusionment expressed by his father, onetime stage and film leading man Jason Robards, Sr. (1892–1963), the younger Robards avoided acting in his youth. He served in the Naval Reserve as a radioman during the years 1940–46; he was present at the bombing of Pearl Harbor, and he later received the Navy Cross. Upon his discharge, he enrolled at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, where he studied with Uta Hagen. Billed as Jason Robards, Jr., he made his first professional New York stage appearance in 1947, in a children's theatre production of Jack and the Beanstalk. Supplementing his acting income by working as a cab driver and a schoolteacher, he spent several years playing small roles onstage and in radio and television before he won a lead role in the 1953 Broadway production American Gothic.

      Full stardom came Robards's way in 1956 when he played the self-delusional traveling salesman Hickey in the revival of Eugene O'Neill's (O'Neill, Eugene) The Iceman Cometh. That same year, he created the role of sensitive young alcoholic Jamie Tyrone, Eugene O'Neill's alter ego, in Long Day's Journey into Night. He subsequently starred in such O'Neill works as Hughie, A Moon for the Misbegotten, and A Touch of the Poet—all of which, like Iceman and Long Day's Journey, were directed by José Quintero (Quintero, José). Robards's other theatrical credits include his Tony Award-winning performance in Budd Schulberg (Schulberg, Budd)'s The Disenchanted (1958); additional honours were bestowed upon him the following year for his work in Lillian Hellman (Hellman, Lillian)'s Toys in the Attic.

      In films since The Journey (1959), Robards was occasionally criticized for delivering overly theatrical screen performances, especially when he repeated his stage roles in the movie versions of Long Day's Journey into Night (1962) and A Thousand Clowns (1965). He appeared in such negligible films as The St. Valentine's Day Massacre (1967), in which he was singularly miscast as Al Capone, and Murders in the Rue Morgue (1971). Nevertheless, he earned two consecutive Academy Awards for his subtle, well-modulated performances as The Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee in All the President's Men (1976) and detective novelist Dashiell Hammett (Hammett, Dashiell) in Julia (1977). He received a third Oscar nomination for his interpretation of yet another “real-life” character, Howard Hughes (Hughes, Howard), in Melvin and Howard (1980). Robards's later films included Philadelphia (1993), A Thousand Acres (1997), and Magnolia (1999).

      Robards continued to divide his time between stage, film, and television assignments well into the late 1990s, earning an Emmy Award for his performance as lawyer Henry Drummond in the 1988 TV-movie version of Inherit the Wind. His sons Jason Robards III and Sam Robards also pursued acting careers. The third of Robards's four wives was actress Lauren Bacall (Bacall, Lauren).

* * *

Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Robards, Jason, Sr. — (1892 1963)    Born in Hillsdale, Michigan, Jason Nelson Robards trained at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. His noted Broadway performances were in Lightnin (1918), Spite Corner (1922), and The Disenchanted* (1958). He spent most of his… …   The Historical Dictionary of the American Theater

  • Robards, Jason Nelson — ▪ 2001       American actor (b. July 26, 1922, Chicago, Ill. d. Dec. 26, 2000, Bridgeport, Conn.), was one of the most distinguished and well respected stage and screen performers of the second half of the 20th century. He was especially noted… …   Universalium

  • Jason Robards — Nombre real Jason Nelson Robards Jr. Nacimiento 26 de julio de 1922 …   Wikipedia Español

  • Jason Robards — (1975) Jason Nelson Robards, jr. (* 26. Juli 1922 in Chicago, Illinois; † 26. Dezember 2000 in Bridgeport, Connecticut) war ein US amerikanischer Schauspieler …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Jason Robards, Sr. — Jason Nelson Robards, senior (31 de diciembre de 1892 – 4 de abril de 1963) fue un actor estadounidense de cine y teatro. Padre del actor, Jason Robards, Jr., ganador del Oscar. Robards participó en muchas películas, inicialmente como actor… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Jason Robards — Données clés Naissance 26 juillet 1922 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Robards — is a surname that refers to: *Jason Robards (1922–2000), American actor *Jason Robards, Sr. (1892–1963), American stage and screen actor; father of Jason Robards *Karen Robards (b. 1955), American author of romance novels *Sam Robards (b. 1961),… …   Wikipedia

  • Jason — m English form of the name (Greek Iasōn) borne in classical mythology by a hero, leader of the Argonauts, who sailed to Colchis in search of the Golden Fleece, enduring many hardships and adventures. The sorceress Medea fell in love with him and… …   First names dictionary

  • Jason (Vorname) — Jason oder Iason (griech. Ἰάσων) ist ein männlicher Vorname. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Herkunft und Bedeutung 2 Verbreitung 3 Namenstag 4 Varianten …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Robards — ist der Name folgender Personen: Jason Robards (1922–2000), US amerikanischer Schauspieler Sam Robards (* 1961), US amerikanischer Schauspieler Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur Unterscheidung mehrerer mit demselben …   Deutsch Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.