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Kirk Douglas

Kirk Douglas

Birthday: 9 December 1916, Amsterdam, New York, USA
Birth Name: Issur Danielovitch Demsky
Height: 175 cm

Cleft-chinned, steely-eyed and virile star of international cinema who rose from being "the ragman's son" (the name of his best-selling 1988 autobiography) to become a bona fide superst ...Show More

Kirk Douglas
It isn't a manly profession. It's a childish profession. You couldn't be a complete, grown-up adult Show more It isn't a manly profession. It's a childish profession. You couldn't be a complete, grown-up adult and be an actor . . . I mean, if I were a sophisticated adult, how could I say, "Here I am, fighting evil, represented by Yul Brynner"? You have to have a childish part of you! It's true! You know, I watch as my kids have grown up, I've watched, them, you know. Children are natural actors; they pretend they're cops and robbers, and I think all actors retain a certain amount of that within themselves. They have to, or they can't function as actors. And that's why they become self-deprecating. They think, well, it's not Hide
I've never tried to win popularity contests. I've always been blunt - never hesitated about expressi Show more I've never tried to win popularity contests. I've always been blunt - never hesitated about expressing myself. Hide
When you become a star, you don't change. Everyone else does. When you become a star, you don't change. Everyone else does.
Michael didn't like me much after his mother and I got divorced. It was only when he started acting Show more Michael didn't like me much after his mother and I got divorced. It was only when he started acting that we became close. Hide
I want my sons to surpass me, because that's a form of immortality. I want my sons to surpass me, because that's a form of immortality.
In order to achieve anything you must be brave enough to fail. In order to achieve anything you must be brave enough to fail.
Virtue is not photogenic. What is it to be a nice guy? To be nothing, that's what. A big fat zero wi Show more Virtue is not photogenic. What is it to be a nice guy? To be nothing, that's what. A big fat zero with a smile for everybody. Hide
Making movies is a form of narcissism. Making movies is a form of narcissism.
[In his autobiography] I think that... I am unfairly given credit for Michael's talents, as if he ha Show more [In his autobiography] I think that... I am unfairly given credit for Michael's talents, as if he had only my genes. Diana is a talented actress, and Michael has inherited from both of us. My wife and I see Diana and her husband, Bill Darrid, often... and have a pleasant relationship with them Hide
I can't tell you how many times someone has said, "I've heard you're such an S.O.B.I'll say, 'Who sa Show more I can't tell you how many times someone has said, "I've heard you're such an S.O.B.I'll say, 'Who said that?' Ninety percent of the time, it;s someone with whom I've never worked. Hide
Why is it that often the people you do the most for resent you the most? Maybe you remind them of th Show more Why is it that often the people you do the most for resent you the most? Maybe you remind them of their weaknesses. The hell with them! Hide
If the good guy gets the girl, it's rated PG; If the bad guy gets the girl, it's rated R; and if eve Show more If the good guy gets the girl, it's rated PG; If the bad guy gets the girl, it's rated R; and if everybody gets the girl, it's rated X. Hide
[The Mike Wallace Interview, 1957] Well then you don't understand what acting really is. And of cour Show more [The Mike Wallace Interview, 1957] Well then you don't understand what acting really is. And of course, that would be quite a long conversation to go into. I mean acting is an interpretive art. I mean you may hear Heifetz play the violin. He didn't write the piece, but oh, how he plays it. That's what's wonderful. That's what an actor tries to do. He may not have written the piece, but what he wants to do is interpret it.(In answer to MIke Wallace's statement; "but you're reading somebody else's words. Somebody else is telling you what to do, where to go, how to stand, what to say.") Hide
[asked who his favorite director was] I would NEVER do that. I've enjoyed working with Wilder, Wyler Show more [asked who his favorite director was] I would NEVER do that. I've enjoyed working with Wilder, Wyler, Mankiewicz. Hawks, Kazan. I did three films with Minelli and got nominated for two of them - but I could never name just one director. Hide
[on Paths of Glory (1957)] A truly great film with a truly great theme: the insanity and brutality o Show more [on Paths of Glory (1957)] A truly great film with a truly great theme: the insanity and brutality of war. As I predicted, it made no money. Hide
I came from abject poverty. There was nowhere to go but up. I came from abject poverty. There was nowhere to go but up.
[to ABILITY Magazine] You see, when a person becomes disabled, often their family starts thinking, " Show more [to ABILITY Magazine] You see, when a person becomes disabled, often their family starts thinking, "Oh dear, don't move, let me get that for you". Once I told my wife that I thought I wanted breakfast in bed the next morning, she said the old joke, "If you want breakfast in bed, sleep in the kitchen." Hide
I have always told my sons that they didn't have my advantages of being born into abject poverty. I have always told my sons that they didn't have my advantages of being born into abject poverty.
I've always believed virtue is not photogenic, and I think I've always been attracted to a part, uh, Show more I've always believed virtue is not photogenic, and I think I've always been attracted to a part, uh, I'd rather play the *evil* character, most of the time, than the nice fella. And I think it really *bothered* my mother, because she would tell people, "You know, my son's not like that, he's really a nice boy!" Hide
My kids never had the advantage I had. I was born poor. My kids never had the advantage I had. I was born poor.
[2011, on Anne Hathaway] She's gorgeous! Wow! Where were you when I was making pictures? [2011, on Anne Hathaway] She's gorgeous! Wow! Where were you when I was making pictures?
I often played the good cowboy on screen, riding in to save the day. Now, everybody thinks he is a c Show more I often played the good cowboy on screen, riding in to save the day. Now, everybody thinks he is a cowboy too. That frightens me. We have become a cowboy country with too many guns. I cannot understand the people who are against some form of gun control. They should be the first to welcome a message on making it more difficult to get a gun. Many of them seem to propose more guns being available to everybody. Why? Are they interested in making more money for the gun manufacturers? Are they politicians who just want to oppose the president in anything he endorses? It's incomprehensible to me. (2013) Hide
I never, ever thought I would live to be 100. That's shocked me, really. And it's sad, too. I miss B Show more I never, ever thought I would live to be 100. That's shocked me, really. And it's sad, too. I miss Burt Lancaster - we fought a lot, and I miss him a lot. And John Wayne, even though he was a Republican and I was a Democrat. Hide
[on John Wayne] John Wayne was a star because he always played John Wayne. Frankly, he wasn't an exc Show more [on John Wayne] John Wayne was a star because he always played John Wayne. Frankly, he wasn't an excellent actor, but good heavens, what a star! It wasn't John Wayne who served the roles; the roles served John Wayne. Hide
[on Linda Darnell] Linda Darnell is the most unspoilt star on the screen -- and also the most beauti Show more [on Linda Darnell] Linda Darnell is the most unspoilt star on the screen -- and also the most beautiful. Hide
Let's face it - the world is a mess and he young people will inherit this mess. We should do all we Show more Let's face it - the world is a mess and he young people will inherit this mess. We should do all we can to help deal with it. That's why I wrote the book "Let's Face It" and dedicated to the young people. I try, with humor, to help them navigate through what lies ahead. But the reality is, he problems they face are not very funny. Hide
I'm too old to change. Like Popeye, "I yam what I yam." Love me or hate me, just don't be indifferen Show more I'm too old to change. Like Popeye, "I yam what I yam." Love me or hate me, just don't be indifferent. Hide
Life is like a B-picture script! It is that corny. If I had my life story offered to me to film, I'd Show more Life is like a B-picture script! It is that corny. If I had my life story offered to me to film, I'd turn it down. Hide
We are the strongest country in the world. We are the richest. We must take self-inventory. We must Show more We are the strongest country in the world. We are the richest. We must take self-inventory. We must look less into the stars and planets in the heavens and more into ourselves. What can we do to make our country better? To earn back the respect we used to have? Hide
If you want to know about a man you can find out an awful lot by looking at who he married. If you want to know about a man you can find out an awful lot by looking at who he married.
You have to leave your country to get a perspective, to see what makes America great. Now I can say Show more You have to leave your country to get a perspective, to see what makes America great. Now I can say that nowhere in the world is there a match for what we have in Hollywood. Hide
I've finally gotten away from Burt Lancaster. My luck has changed for the better. I've got nice-look Show more I've finally gotten away from Burt Lancaster. My luck has changed for the better. I've got nice-looking girls in my films now. Hide
[on the death of Tony Curtis]: Tony Curtis was one of the best-looking guys in Hollywood. He was oft Show more [on the death of Tony Curtis]: Tony Curtis was one of the best-looking guys in Hollywood. He was often described as beautiful, but he was also a fine actor. I worked with Tony in The Vikings (1958) and in Spartacus (1960), and we were friends for a long time. What I will miss most about him is his sense of humor. It was always fun to be with him. Hide
I think half the success in life comes from first trying to find out what you really want to do. And Show more I think half the success in life comes from first trying to find out what you really want to do. And then going ahead and doing it. Hide
I've made a career of playing sons of bitches. I've made a career of playing sons of bitches.
I don't know who any of the new stars are, and they probably don't know me. I don't know who any of the new stars are, and they probably don't know me.
I did four movies with [John Wayne]. We were a strange combination. He was a Republican and I was a Show more I did four movies with [John Wayne]. We were a strange combination. He was a Republican and I was a Democrat. We argued all the time. Hide
I was not a tough guy. I just acted like one. I was not a tough guy. I just acted like one.
[December 9, 2006] My name is Kirk Douglas. You may know me. If you don't . . . Google me. I was a m Show more [December 9, 2006] My name is Kirk Douglas. You may know me. If you don't . . . Google me. I was a movie star and I'm Michael Douglas' dad, Catherine Zeta-Jones' father-in-law, and the grandparents of their two children. Today I celebrate my 90th birthday. I have a message to convey to America's young people. A 90th birthday is special. In my case, this birthday is not only special but miraculous. I survived World War II, a helicopter crash, a stroke, and two new knees. It's a tradition that when a "birthday boy" stands over his cake he makes a silent wish for his life and then blows out the candles. I have followed that tradition for 89 years but on my 90th birthday, I have decided to rebel. Instead of making a silent wish for myself, I want to make a loud wish for The World. Let's face it: The World is in a mess and you are inheriting it. Generation Y, you are on the cusp. You are the group facing many problems: abject poverty, global warming, genocide, AIDS and suicide bombers, to name a few. These problems exist and the world is silent. We have done very little to solve these problems. Now we leave it to you. You have to fix it because the situation is intolerable. You need to rebel, to speak up, write, vote, and care about people and the world you live in. We live in the best country in the world. I know. My parents were Russian immigrants. America is a country where EVERYONE, regardless of race, creed, or age has a chance. I had that chance. You are the generation that is most impacted and the generation that can make a difference. I love this country because I came from a life of poverty. I was able to work my way through college and go into acting, the field that I love. There is no guarantee in this country that you will be successful. But you always have a chance. Nothing should interfere with it. You have to make sure that nothing stands in the way. When I blow out my candles - 90! . . . it will take a long time . . . but I'll be thinking of you. Hide
[on Michael Moore's interview with Charlton Heston in Bowling for Columbine (2002)] I cannot forgive Show more [on Michael Moore's interview with Charlton Heston in Bowling for Columbine (2002)] I cannot forgive the way he treated Charlton Heston. Even if I don't agree with much of Heston's politics, Chuck is a gentleman. He agreed to have an interview with Moore, and Moore took advantage of the situation and made Chuck look foolish. He had been invited to Heston's home and he was treated with courtesy. I winced when I saw the expression on Chuck's face change as he realized that he had been duped. And yet he remained a gentleman and dismissed the interloper with grace. Hide
[on Doris Day] That face she shows the world -- smiling, only talking good, happy, tuned into God -- Show more [on Doris Day] That face she shows the world -- smiling, only talking good, happy, tuned into God -- as far as I'm concerned, that's just a mask. I haven't a clue as to what's underneath. Doris is just about the remotest person I know. Hide
Senator McCarthy was an awful man who was finding Communists all over the country. He blacklisted th Show more Senator McCarthy was an awful man who was finding Communists all over the country. He blacklisted the writers who wouldn't obey his edict. The heads of the studios were hypocrites who went along with it. My company produced Spartacus, written by Dalton Trumbo, a blacklisted writer, under the name Sam Jackson. Too many people were using false names back then. I was embarrassed. I was young enough to be impulsive, so even though I was warned against it, I used his real name on the screen. Hide
People are always talking about the old days. They say that the old movies were better, that the old Show more People are always talking about the old days. They say that the old movies were better, that the old actors were so great. But I don't think so. All I can say about the old days is that they have passed. Hide
Kirk Douglas's FILMOGRAPHY
as Actor (52)
Kirk Douglas Kirk Douglas'S roles
Capt. Matthew Yelland
Capt. Matthew Yelland

Harrison
Harrison

Einar
Einar

Spartacus
Spartacus

Peter Sandza
Peter Sandza

Whit Sterling
Whit Sterling

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