Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Charlton Heston, 1923-2008

This week, one of the great Hollywood legends passed away. Academy Award winner Charlton Heston was a cinematic giant who completely redefined stage presence with his powerful voice and dynamic performances. He starred in many great and diverse films, most notably The Greatest Show on Earth, The Ten Commandments, Planet of the Apes, and Ben Hur. He was a controversial political figure on both the liberal and conservative ends of the spectrum. He marched for civil rights in the 1960's long before it was considered right or even acceptable, he opposed President Johnson's Gun Control Act in 1968, and he openly opposed the Vietnam War.

Becoming more conservative in later years, he spoke out against affirmative action, referred to political correctness as "tyranny with manners," and served as President of the National Rifle Association from 1998 to 2003. His political and social stances were always bold and often questioned, but he will ultimately be remembered for his incredible film performances. He was a superlative actor and a true legend, and he created some movie moments that will live on for generations.

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