Strother Martin – Character Actor with Profound Impact

Strother Martin in Cool Hand Luke (1967)

Strother Martin Short Biography Strother Martin while famous for that line and many others, he was a springboard champion, taught swimming in the Navy during WWII, and missed the 1948 Olympic team by one place. He moved to Hollywood and among other things, was a swimming instructor to Charles Chaplin’s children. After meeting Sam Peckinpah he began to get roles like Cool Hand Luke (1967), Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969), Slap Shot (1977), and The Wild Bunch (1969). Strother Douglas Martin, Jr. (March 26, 1919 – August 1, 1980) was a character actor who often worked with John Wayne and Paul Newman. Many of his memorable western films were directed by John Ford and Sam Peckinpah. He is no doubt best known as the prison “captain” in Cool Hand Luke (1967), where he utters the famous line “What we’ve got here is failure to communicate.” This line is ranked number 11 on the American Film Institute list 100 Years…100 Movie Quotes. As a youth, he was very good…

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Hard Times (1975) – Episode 17

Charles Bronson in Hard Times (1975)

Hard Times (1975) features Charles Bronson as a bare-knuckle fighter in New Orleans during the Great Depression. This movie also features James Coburn and Strother Martin in what may be his strongest role. Welcome to Episode 17. Continuing on the Strother Martin line today’s subject is the 1975 movie Hard Times (1975). Hard Times (1975) features Charles Bronson as Chaney a tuff as nails fighter with no background and very few words. In this entire movie, Bronson only speaks about 500 words. Bronson was around 53 when he took this role. The producers wanted a younger man and Jan-Michael Vincent was considered. However, Bronson was perfect for the role and was in great shape. Bronson was born in Pennsylvania to Lithuanian parents. As a result of his upbringing, he could speak several languages fluently. He also worked in the coal mines where he was in a tunnel collapse resulting in a lifelong fear of closed spaces. This fear and his languages were integrated into his roles in The Great Escape…

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