MONTGOMERY CLIFT BIOGRAPHY & FILMOGRAPHY:
Montgomery Clift was born October 17th, 1920 in Omaha, Nebraska, USA with the first name Edward. Monty had one older brother, Brooks and a twin sister, Roberta. His father did quite well financially working in banking and as a stock broker. When Clift's father worked, his mother Ethel, would travel abroad with the children and always brought along a private tutor to educate the three children. However, during the great depression, things were bad financially, and therefore, they had to get used to living a different type of lifestyle.
His family relocated to Sarasota, Florida when Clift was thirteen and he decided to join a local youth theater and see what acting was all about. Ethel recognized that Clift had a talent and so the family soon relocated to Sharon, Massachusetts and he auditioned for a Broadway play, "Fly Away Home" and was cast. The play ran for two seasons, giving Clift quite a bit of experience working on stage.
His family next relocated to Manhattan and Clift again auditioned for another play, "Dame Nature" where this time he was cast in the lead role which helped him earn Broadway star status at only the age of seventeen. Even though he had caught the attention of Hollywood, Clift wanted nothing to do with the film industry. He was enjoying his career as a Broadway actor and for the next ten years he continued to be cast in various Broadway plays such as, "There Shall Be No Night", "The Skin of Our Teeth" and "Our Town".
After much persuasion, Clift finally agreed to travel to Hollywood to discuss a possible career in film. He met with MGM first, but upon them not agreeing to his own terms he left and was immediately contacted by United Artists who agreed to his terms and so he chose to work with them.
He was cast in "Red River" (1948) alongside of western stars John Wayne, Walter Brennan, Noah Beery, Joanne Dru and John Ireland, which turned out to be one of the most famous Westerns ever and made him an overnight sensation. Soon after he took on a new and challenging role in the film, "The Search" (1948) and his film career was heading in the right direction. Clift began to make some well known friends in Hollywood such as Mira Postova, who coached him for every acting role he accepted as well as Elizabeth Taylor whom he worked with on, "A Place in the Sun" (1951), "Raintree County" (1956) and "Suddenly Last Summer" (1959).
Clift took a two year break from the film industry and then returned with a role on, "From Here to Eternity" (1953) starring alongside Frank Sinatra, Burt Lancaster, Deborah Kerr, Jack Warden, Ernest Borgnine and Donna Reed, which earned him a best actor nomination and the film won eight Oscars total. He took on two more roles in, "I Confess" (1953) and "Indiscretion of an American Housewife" also 1953. Again, Clift decided to take another break from Hollywood, this one lasting three years.
Clift's personal life was not as successful as his professional. He suffered mental problems and his alcohol and drug addiction had an effect on him both personally and professionally. Clift suffered a car accident in 1957 when driving home from a dinner party with Elizabeth Taylor and although he did survive and recover, the accident did take a toll on his physical appearance. Clift was also a homosexual and so never married or had any children. His health also suffered severely from dysentery and colitis for most of his adult life.
Clift received another nomination for Best Supporting Actor for his role in, "Judgment at Nuremberg" (1961). When he was filming the movie, "Freud" (1962) he was ill for many days of the filming and caused Universal to lose a lot of money, however, when the film became quite successful, Clift's attorney proved to Universal that the films success was due to Clift's involvement in the film and he therefore won a settlement.
Clift was in high demand not only in the film industry but on Broadway as well. He could not take on every offer that came his way and turned down some films that became quite successful. He was supposed to work with Elizabeth Taylor again on a film called, "Reflections in a Golden Eye", however while waiting to begin filming he took a role on, "The Defector" (1966) which sadly turned out to be his last screen role.
Montgomery Clift died suddenly at the young age of forty five from a heart attack on July 23rd, 1966 and was buried in Quaker Cemetery, Brooklyn, New York.
Montgomery Clifton was chosen by Empire Magazine as one of the 100 Sexiest Stars in film history in 1995. He was also voted the 60th Greatest Star of all time by Entertainment Weekly. Despite his personal issues, when he took on a role, he gave it his all and proved in his short lifetime that he was indeed a very talented actor.
1966 The Defector
1961 Judgment at Nuremberg
1961 The Misfits
1960 Wild River
1959 Suddenly, Last Summer
1958 The Young Lions
1957 Raintree County
1953 From Here to Eternity
1953 Indiscretion of an American Wife
1953 I Confess
1951 A Place in the Sun
1950 The Big Lift
1949 The Heiress
1948 Red River
1948 The Search
1939 Hay Fever