27 September 2008

Paul Newman vs. Robert Redford vs. Clint Eastwood vs. Sean Connery vs. Charlton Heston vs. Robert Duvall

Yesterday, Paul Newman died. He was one of the greatest actors of his generation and a remarkable, generous man. I faced him off against his good friend Robert Redford with whom he was often mentioned in one breath, even though they only made two movies together: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, 1969, and The Sting, 1973—but what movies!

I stopped the comparison at April 2008 to exclude the distorting effect of his being terminally ill and dying these last several months. I am at a loss to explain why his top point is in January 2005—does anyone have any ideas? Nevertheless, Redford did slightly surpass Newman on average regarding Google-popularity. However, Redford (72) is actually quite a bit younger than Newman (✝83). So I found four award-winning actors more of his generation who were still alive till this year: Clint Eastwood, Sean Connery, Charlton Heston and Robert Duvall.

Again to make a fair comparison, I stopped the graph at March 2008, just before Heston's death. To my surprise, Newman was preceded by Eastwood and Connery. Note esp. Eastwood's peaks in February 2005 (4 Oscars and 3 Oscar nominations for Million Dollar Baby) and in February 2007 (2 Oscar nominations for Flags of Our Fathers and 1 Oscar and 3 Oscar nominations for Letters from Iwo Jima).

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