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Summary Article: Hackman, Gene (Eugene Alden)
from Chambers Biographical Dictionary


♦ US actor

Born in San Bernardino, California, he was a Marine and had studied journalism before pursuing acting at the Pasadena Playhouse. Working in television from 1959, he made his film debut in Mad Dog Coll (1961). He received Academy Award nominations for Bonnie and Clyde (1967) and I Never Sang for My Father (1970) before winning the award for his performance as the obsessive cop "Popeye" Doyle in The French Connection (1971). His star roles include The Poseidon Adventure (1972), The Conversation (1974) and Night Moves (1975) and he played villain Lex Luthor in Superman (1978) and its sequels. One of US cinema's most respected and prolific character actors, he received a further Academy Award nomination for Mississippi Burning (1988) and won the Best Supporting Actor award for Unforgiven (1992). Recent films include The Royal Tenenbaums (2001), for which he won a Golden Globe award, but he has since retired from acting and published several novels.

© Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd 2011

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