Oscar-winning actor Edmond O’Brien, whose roles ranged from the original “1984" to “Julius Caesar,” died at a sanitorium after a long bout with Alzheimer’s disease, a spokesman announced today. He was 69.
The New York-born O’Brien, who won the Academy Award in 1954 as best supporting actor for his portrayal of Hollywood press agent Oscar Muldoon in “The Barefoot Contessa,” died at 9:30 p.m. Wednesday at St. Erne’s Sanitorium, said spokesman Bill Feeder of the public relations firm of Rogers & Cowan.
O’Brien was nominated for a second Oscar in 1964 for his role of Sen. Raymond Clark in “Seven Days in May.”
O’Brien, who starred as the beleaguered Winston Smith in the 1955 production of George Orwell’s classic “1984,” and as Casca in “Julius Caesar,” had a range which took him from tough-guy roles in film noir to the classics.
Worked With Orson Wells
He had studied drama at Columbia University and worked with Orson Welles’ Mercury Theater, including the famous radio broadcast based on H. G. Wells’ “War of the Worlds” that caused a panic among Americans who thought the Martian invasion was real.
Other film roles included, “The Killers,” based on the Ernest Hemingway story, “A Double Life,” “Another Part of the Forest,” “White Heat,” “The Bigamist,” “The Great Impostor,” “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance,” “The Birdman of Alcatraz,” “The Longest Day,” “Fantastic Voyage” and “The Wild Bunch.” He also starred in “The Long, Hot Summer” television series.
His friends and fellow actors called him “Tiger.”
Survivors include daughters Bridget and Maria O’Brien of Los Angeles; son Brendan of Los Angeles; brother Liam O’Brien, producer of the “Miami Vice” TV series, and two grandchildren.
A Rosary will be held Friday at 7:30 p.m. at the St. Martin of Tours Church in Brentwood. Funeral mass will be held Saturday at 1 p.m. at St. Martin of Tours, with burial at Holy Cross Cemetery.