So sad. One of the most prolific, multi-talented actors of his generation passed away on June 24. Eli Wallach, who may be best known as Tuco in the Clint Eastwood/Sergio Leone classic Western, was 98 years old.
Goodbye, Tuco. Eli Wallach, who famously starred as “The Ugly” in the classic Western The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, died at the age of 98 on June 24. His death was confirmed by his daughter, according to the New York Times.
Eli Wallach: Prolific Actor Dies
No other details on Eli’s death were immediately available.
The prolific, old school actor was one of the first major proponents of “Method” acting in movies, becoming the characters he portrayed on the big screen. His dedication to the craft led to a long, impressive list of memorable performances. His first starring role in Elia Kazan‘s Baby Doll is still seen as a marvel, he created illuminating characters in The Magnificent Seven, Nuts, and The Misfits (just to name a few), and he of course became a Western icon by playing the villain Tuco alongside Clint Eastwood in The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. All in all, Eli appeared in more than 80 films.
But he also had an extremely successful career on the stage and on television. Eli got his acting start in the 1950s, earning a Tony Award for his role in Tennessee Williams‘ The Rose Tattoo. He often appeared onstage alongside his wife Anne Jackson, whom he married in 1948, like in the Off Broadway play The Scarecrow.
Eli won an Emmy for his supporting role in Poppies Are Also Flowers, and was nominated four more times between 1968 and 2010. He never really stopped acting — a testament to how much he loved it — making guest appearances in ER, Law and Order, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, and Nurse Jackie.
He and his wife Anne had three children, Peter David, Roberta, and Katherine. Our thoughts and prayers go out to them, as well as Eli’s friends, during this difficult time. He was a true Hollywood legend.
— Andrew Gruttadaro