Jason Robards

Jason Robards

Infobox actor
name = Jason Robards

caption = Robards as Cheyenne in "Once Upon a Time in the West" (1968)
birthname = Jason Nelson Robards, Jr.
birthdate = birth_date|1922|7|26
location = Chicago, Illinois
deathdate = death_date_and_age|2000|12|26|1922|7|26
deathplace = Bridgeport, Connecticut
spouse = Eleanor Pittman (1948-1958) Rachel Taylor (1959-1961) Lauren Bacall (1961-1969) Lois O'Connor (1970-2000)

academyawards = Best Supporting Actor 1976 "All the President's Men" 1977 "Julia"
emmyawards = Outstanding Lead Actor - Miniseries/Movie 1988 "Inherit the Wind"
tonyawards = Best Leading Actor in a Play 1959 "The Disenchanted"
awards = NBR Award for Best Actor 1962 "Long Day's Journey Into Night" ; "Tender Is the Night" NBR Award for Best Supporting Actor 1976 "All the President's Men" NYFCC Award for Best Supporting Actor 1976 "All the President's Men"

Jason Nelson Robards, Jr., (July 26, 1922 – December 26, 2000) was an American actor. He became famous playing works of American dramatist Eugene O'Neill, and would regularly play O'Neill's works throughout his career. Robards' was cast in both common-man roles and as well known historical figures.


Early life

Robards was born in Chicago, the son of Hope Maxine (née Glanville) and Jason Robards, Sr., [ [http://dgmweb.net/genealogy/FGS/R/RobardsJasonNelson-HopeMaxineGlanville-AgnesE_.shtml "Jason Robards genealogy"] .] an actor who regularly appeared on the stage and in such early films as "The Gamblers" (1929) and was among the better-known actors of the first half of the twentieth century. The family moved to New York City when young Jason was still a toddler, and then moved to Los Angeles when he was six years old. Later interviews with Robards suggested that the trauma of his parents' divorce, which occurred during his grade-school years, greatly affected his personality and worldview. Jason as a youth also witnessed first-hand the decline of his father's acting career -- the elder Robards had enjoyed considerable success during the era of silent films, but he fell out of favor after the advent of "talkies", leaving Jason Jr. soured on the Hollywood film industry. The teenaged Robards excelled in athletics, running a 4:18 mile during his junior year at Hollywood High School. Although his prowess in sports attracted interest from several universities, upon his graduation in 1940 Robards decided to join the U. S. Navy.

Naval service in World War II

Radioman 3rd class Robards joined the heavy cruiser USS "Northampton" (CA-26) in 1941. He was aboard her at sea 100 miles away when the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor occurred and, contrary to some stories, witnessed the devastation of the attack only afterwards, when "Northampton" returned to Pearl two days later. [Bloomfield, Gary L. & Shain, Stacie L., with Davidson, Arlen C., "Duty, Honor, Applause: America's Entertainers in World War II", 2004, p. 264. ISBN 1592285503] "Northampton" was later directed into the Guadalcanal campaign, where it was involved in the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands.

During the Battle of Tassafaronga on the night of November 30, 1942, "Northampton" was sunk by hits from two Japanese torpedoes. Robards found himself treading water until near daybreak, when he was rescued by an American destroyer. Although a 1979 Hy Gardner column [Gardner, Hy. Panorama Magazine, Vol. II, No. 1, Sunday Daily Herald, 7 January 1979, p. 2] states that Robards was awarded the Navy Cross and "13 battle stars" (actually awarded to the ship, not the individual), Robards's name does not appear on any official or semi-official rolls of Navy Cross winners. [Sterner, C. Douglas. "Index: Recipients of the Navy Cross, All Wars/All Periods, All Branches of Service. Pueblo CO, 2006]

Two years later in November, 1944 Robards was in another dramatic engagement this time as a radioman on the USS "Nashville" (CL-43) which was the flagship for the invasion of Mindoro. On December 13 she was struck by a kamikaze off Negros Island. The aircraft itself hit one of the port five inch gun mounts while her two bombs set the midsection ablaze. There were 223 casualties and the "Nashville" was forced to return to Pearl Harbor and then Puget Sound for repairs. It was also on the "Nashville" that he first found a copy of Eugene O’Neill’s play "Strange Interlude" in the ship’s library. Fact|date=May 2008

It was in the Navy that he first started thinking seriously about being an actor. He had emceed for a Navy band in Pearl Harbor, gotten a few laughs and decided he liked it. His father suggested he enroll in the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York. Fact|date=January 2008


Robards decided to get into acting after the war. His career started out slowly. He moved to New York City and found small parts there, first in radio and then on the stage. His big break was landing the starring role in José Quintero's 1956 off-Broadway production and the 1960 television film of Eugene O'Neill's "The Iceman Cometh", as the philosophical salesman Hickey, winning an Obie Award for his performance. He also played Hickey in a 1985 Broadway revival staged by Quintero, who directed Robards in Broadway productions of O'Neill's plays "Long Day's Journey Into Night, Hughie, A Touch of the Poet" and "A Moon for the Misbegotten". He repeated his performance in "Long Day's Journey Into Night" in the 1962 film and televised his performances in "A Moon for the Misbegotten" and "Hughie".

Robards also appeared on stage in a 1988 Broadway revival of O'Neill's "Ah, Wilderness!" directed by Arvin Brown, as well as Lillian Hellman's "Toys in the Attic", Arthur Miller's "After the Fall," Clifford Odets' "The Country Girl" and Harold Pinter's "No Man's Land."

He made his film debut in the 1946 two-reel comedy "Follow That Music", but after his Broadway success he was invited to make his feature debut in "The Journey" in 1959. He became a familiar face to movie audiences throughout the 1960s, notably for his performances in "A Thousand Clowns" (1965) (repeating his stage performance), "The Night They Raided Minsky's" (1968), and "Once Upon a Time in the West" (1968).

Robards played three different US Presidents on film - namely Abraham Lincoln in "The Perfect Tribute" and a television production of "Abe Lincoln in Illinois," Ulysses S. Grant in "The Legend of the Lone Ranger" (a role he also voiced in the PBS miniseries "The Civil War"), and Franklin Delano Roosevelt in "FDR: The Final Years". He also created a sensation as the fictional president Richard Monckton (based on Richard Nixon) in the television miniseries "" (1977). He also voiced a number of documentaries, including Ken Burns'

Robards received eight Tony Award nominations, [ [http://www.tonyawards.com/en_US/archive/dyk/ "American Theatre Wing"] .] more than any other male actor, and won in 1959 as Best Actor for his work in "The Disenchanted," which was also his only stage appearance with his father. Robards received the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in consecutive years for "All the President's Men" (1976) and "Julia" (1977). [ [http://awardsdatabase.oscars.org/ampas_awards/BasicSearchInput.jsp "Oscars data base of nominees and winners"] .] He was also nominated for another Oscar for his role in "Melvin and Howard" (1980) and received the Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Special for the 1988 production of "Inherit the Wind". [ [http://emmys.com/awards/awardsearch.php "Emmy Awards Database of nominees and winners"] .] He was among the recipients at the Kennedy Center Honors in 1999. [ [http://www.kennedy-center.org/programs/specialevents/honors/history/home.html "Kennedy Center list of Honorees"] .]

Personal life

Robards had six children from his four marriages, including actor Sam Robards by his third wife, actress Lauren Bacall, whom he married in 1961 and from whom he was divorced in 1969.

In 1972, he was in a terrible automobile accident on a winding California road. He drove his car into the side of a mountain and nearly died. His acute drinking problem contributed to the accident. He slowly recovered after extensive surgery and facial reconstruction.

A resident of the Southport section of Fairfield, Connecticut, ["From the Archives" feature ("The Week of July 8") of "The Advocate" of Stamford, Connecticut, July 9, 2007, page A7, Stamford edition.] he died of lung cancer in Bridgeport, Connecticut in December, 2000. His death was mourned by both fans and actors, and at a memorial service at Broadway's Broadhurst Theater to honor Robards, it was actors who seemed to feel most profoundly the loss of one of the greats, one of their own. "He was the last of a breed of actors who dedicated themselves to a life in the theater," said Kevin Spacey.Fact|date=May 2007

Robards was cremated and his ashes were given to a friend or family.

Jennifer Jason Leigh chose her middle name in honor of Robards. Robards was a major U.S. Civil War buff and scholar. He ultimately did the voice of Ulysses S. Grant for Ken Burns' miniseries "The Civil War", and received an Emmy nomination for playing Abraham Lincoln in "Abe Lincoln in Illinois" for The Hallmark Hall of Fame in 1963.

"The Jason Robards Award" was created by the Roundabout Theatre Company in honor of the late actor and his relationship with the theatre.



*"Long Day's Journey Into Night" (1956)
*"The Disenchanted" (1958)
*"Toys in the Attic" (1960)
*"Big Fish, Little Fish" (1961)
*"A Thousand Clowns" (1962)
*"Hughie" (1964)
*"But for Whom Charlie" (1964)
*"After the Fall" (1964)
*"The Devils" (1965)
*"A Thousand Clowns" (1965)
*"We Bombed in New Haven" (1968)
*"The Country Girl" (1972)
*"A Moon for the Misbegotten" (1973)
*"A Boy and His Dog" (1975)
*"A Touch of the Poet" (1977)
*"You Can't Take It with You" (1984)
*"The Iceman Cometh" (1985)
*"A Month of Sundays" (1987)
*"Ah, Wilderness!" (1988)
*"Long Day's Journey Into Night" (1988)
*"Love Letters" (1989)
*"Park Your Car in Harvard Yard" (1991)
*"No Man's Land" (1994)
*"Molly Sweeney" (1996)


*"The Journey" (1959)
*"By Love Possessed" (1961)
*"Long Day's Journey Into Night" (1962)
*"Tender Is the Night" (1962)
*"Act One" (1963) (as George S. Kaufman)
*"A Thousand Clowns" (1965)
*"Any Wednesday" (1966)
*"A Big Hand for the Little Lady" (1966)
*"Hour of the Gun" (1967) (as Doc Holliday)
*"The St. Valentine's Day Massacre" (1967) (as Al Capone)
*"Divorce American Style" (1967)
*"Isadora" (1968)
*"The Night They Raided Minsky's" (1968)
*"Once Upon a Time in the West" (1968)
*"Fools" (1970)
*"Julius Caesar" (1970) (as Brutus)
*"" , aka "Operation Snafu" (1970)
*"Tora! Tora! Tora!" (1970) (as Gen. Walter Short)
*"The Ballad of Cable Hogue" (1970)
*"Murders in the Rue Morgue" (1971)
*"Jud" (1971)
*"Johnny Got His Gun" (1971)
*"The War Between Men and Women" (1972)
*"The Death Merchants" aka "Tod eines Fremden", aka "The Execution" (1973)
*"Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid" (1973) (as Lew Wallace)
*"Mr. Sycamore" (1975)
*"A Boy and His Dog" (1975)
*"All the President's Men" (1976)
*"Julia" (1977)
*"Comes a Horseman" (1978)
*"Hurricane" (1979)
*"Melvin and Howard" (1980) (as Howard Hughes)
*"Raise the Titanic!" (1980)
*"Caboblanco" (1980)
*"The Legend of the Lone Ranger" (1981) (as President Ulysses S. Grant)
*"Fitzcarraldo (1981) http://stockpunkt.com/2007/11/22/fotokiste-jason-robards/
*"Tempest (1982)
*"Something Wicked this Way Comes" (1983)
*"Max Dugan Returns" (1983)
*"The World of Tomorrow" (1984) (voice narration)
*"America and Lewis Hine" (1984) (voice-over)
*"Square Dance" (1987)
*"The Good Mother" (1988)
*"Bright Lights, Big City" (1988)
*"Black Rainbow" (1989)
*"Parenthood" (1989)
*"Reunion" (1989)
*"Dream a Little Dream" (1989)
*"Quick Change" (1990)
*"" (1991) (voice narration)
*"Storyville" (1992)
*"Philadelphia (1993)
*"The Trial (1993 film)" (1993)
*"The Adventures of Huck Finn" (1993)
*"Little Big League" (1994)
*"The Paper" (1994)
*"Crimson Tide" (1995)
*"A Thousand Acres" (1997)
*"The Great American West" (1997) (voice narration)
*"Heartwood" (1998)
*"Enemy of the State" (1998)
*"Beloved" (1998)
*"The Real Macaw" (1998)
*"Magnolia" (1999)
*"" (2000)


*"A Doll's House" (1959)
*"The Iceman Cometh (1960)
*"Abe Lincoln in Illinois" (1964)
*"Noon Wine" (1966)
*"The House Without a Christmas Tree" (1972)
*"The Country Girl" (1973)
*"The Holiday Treasure" (1973)
*"A Moon for the Misbegotten" (1975)
*"The Easter Promise" (1975)
*"Addie and the King of Hearts" (1976)
*"" (1977)
*"A Christmas to Remember" (1978)
*"Haywire" (1980) (as Leland Hayward)
*"" (1980) (as Franklin D. Roosevelt)
*"The Day After" (1983)
*"You Can't Take It with You" (1984)
*"Sakharov" (1984) (as Andrei Sakharov)
*"Hughie" (1984)
*"The Long Hot Summer" (1985)
*"The Atlanta Child Murders" (1985)
*"Johnny Bull" (1986)
*"The Last Frontier" (1986)
*"Breaking Home Ties" (1987)
*"Laguna Heat" (1987)
*"Thomas Hart Benton " (1988)
*"The Christmas Wife" (1988)
*"Inherit the Wind" (1988)
*"The Civil War" (1990)
*"Mark Twain and Me" (1991) (as Mark Twain)
*"An Inconvenient Woman" (1991)
*"" (1991) (as Dr. Armand Hammer)
*"American Masters: Helen Hayes – First Lady of the American Theatre" (1991) (voice narration)
*"When It Was a Game" (1991) (voice)
*"The Perfect Tribute" (1991) (as Abraham Lincoln)
*"" (1992)
*"Lincoln" (1992) (voice, as Abraham Lincoln)
*"When It Was a Game 2" (1992) (voice)
*"Heidi" (1993)
*"The Enemy Within (TOS episode)" (1994)
*"Baseball" (1994) (voice)
*"Journey" (1995)
*"My Antonia" (1995)
*"TR" (1996) (voice narration)
*"The West" (1996) (voice)
*"Truman" (1996) (voice narration)
*"" (1998) (voice)
*"Going Home (TV Movie - his final performance on screen.) [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0200668/ IMDB] " (2000)


External links

*imdb name | id=001673 | name=Jason Robards
*ibdb name|ID=68627|name=Jason Robards
* [http://www.tonyawards.com/en_US/archive/dyk/ American Theatre Wing's Tony Awards Website]

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • 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

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  • 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

  • Jason Robards, Sr. — Infobox Person name = Jason Robards Senior image size = caption = birth date = December 31, 1892 birth place = death date = April 4, 1963 (aged 70) death place = occupation = Actor, Relative spouse = Hope Maxine Glanville parents = children =… …   Wikipedia

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  • 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

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