: It's a bit rough priding oneself that one isn't too bad an actor and then finding one's only remembered for a giggle.
Richard Widmark established himself as an icon of American cinema with his debut in the 1947 film noir Kiss of Death (1947) in which he won a Best Supporting Actor Academy Award nomination as the killer "Tommy Udo".
With fellow post-War stars Kirk Douglas and Robert Mitchum, Widmark brought a new kind of character to the screen in his character leads and supporting parts: a hard-boiled type who does not actively court the sympathy of the audience. Widmark was not afraid to play deeply troubled, deeply conflicted, or just downright deeply corrupt characters.
After his debut, Widmark would work steadily until he retired at the age of 76 in 1990, primarily as a character lead. His stardom would peak around the time he played the U.S. prosecutor in Judgment at Nuremberg (1961) as the 1950s segued into the 1960s, but he would continue to act for another 30 years.
In fall 2007, he sustained a fractured vertebrae after a fall. He died about six months later of complications.
Despite playing heartless killers and bigots on film, he personally denounced all kinds of violence and the usage of guns. He admitted that once he went fishing and regretted the fact he caught a trout and took its life.
He also apologized profusely to Sidney Poitier during the shoot of the movie No Way Out (1950) after filming scenes together which called for Widmark to spew out racist remarks.