Anthony Quinn

From Robin's SM-201 Website
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Anthony Quinn
Anthony Quinn 1960s.jpg
Quinn, c. 1960
Background information
Born as: Manuel Antonio Rodolfo Quinn Oaxaca
Born Apr 21, 1915
Chihuahua, Mexico
Died Jun 3, 2001 - age  85
Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
Radiation Therapy for Cancer
Spouse(s): Katherine DeMille
(1937 - 1965) divorced
Jolanda Addolori
(1966 - 1997) divorced
Kathy Benvin

(1997 - )
Children: 12; including Francesco, Danny and Lorenzo Quinn
Occupation: Actor, film director, painter, sculptor, restaurateur, writer
Years active 1936–2001
Citizenship: Mexico and United States

Manuel Antonio Rodolfo Quinn Oaxaca (✦April 21, 1915 – June 3, 2001), known professionally as Anthony Quinn, was a Mexican-American actor. He was known for his portrayal of earthy, passionate characters "marked by a brutal and elemental virility" in numerous critically acclaimed films both in Hollywood and abroad. His notable films include La Strada, The Guns of Navarone, Guns for San Sebastian, Lawrence of Arabia, The Shoes of the Fisherman, The Message, Lion of the Desert, and Jungle Fever. He also had an Oscar-nominated titular role in Zorba the Greek.

Quinn won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor twice: for Viva Zapata! in 1952 and Lust for Life in 1956. In addition, he received two Academy Award nominations in the Best Leading Actor category, along with five Golden Globe nominations and two BAFTA Award nominations. In 1987, he was presented with the Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime Achievement Award. Through both his artistic endeavors and civil rights activism, he remains a seminal figure of Latin-American representation in the media of the United States.

Life and career

Wikipedia article: Anthony Quinn Life and career

Personal life

Relationships and children

Quinn's first wife was the actress Katherine DeMille, the adopted daughter of Cecil B. DeMille; they wed in 1937. The couple had five children: Christopher (1938–1941), Christina (born December 1, 1941), Catalina (born November 21, 1942), Duncan (born August 4, 1945), and Valentina (born December 26, 1952).[20] Their first child, Christopher, aged two, drowned in the lily pond of next-door neighbor W. C. Fields.

In 1965, Quinn and DeMille divorced because of his affair with Italian costume designer Jolanda Addolori (died 2016), whom he married in 1966. They had three children: Francesco Quinn (March 22, 1963 – August 5, 2011), Danny Quinn (born April 16, 1964), and Lorenzo Quinn (born May 7, 1966).

In the 1970s, during his marriage to Addolori, Quinn also had two children with Friedel Dunbar, an event producer in Los Angeles: Sean Quinn (born February 7, 1973) and Alexander Anthony Quinn (born December 30, 1976).

By the 1990s, Quinn then had two children with his secretary, Katherine Benvin; daughter Antonia Patricia Rose Quinn (born July 23, 1993) and son Ryan Nicholas Quinn (born July 5, 1996).[21][22] His marriage with Addolori finally ended in divorce in August 1997. He then married Benvin in December 1997 and remained married to her until his death.

Civil rights activism

Quinn, who experienced discrimination growing up in Los Angeles, participated in various civil rights and social causes. He provided funding for the Latino advocacy group, the Spanish-Speaking People's Congress. He assisted in fundraising efforts for the legal defense of Mexican American youth in the racially charged Sleepy Lagoon murder trial in 1942. While in Paris, he and several other prominent Americans composed a petition endorsing the 1963 March on Washington; the petition, which was reprinted in several high-profile publications, was intended to rally support among Americans living abroad, according to Elliott Miller, writing in CounterPunch. In 1969, he visited with Native American student activists occupying Alcatraz Island in protest, promising to offer assistance. In 1970, Quinn was a panelist at the Mexican-American Conference. In 1971, he narrated a documentary film by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission discussing job discrimination faced by Hispanic Americans. He was a supporter of the United Farm Workers organization led by his friend and labor activist Cesar Chavez.

Painting and writing

Art critic Donald Kuspit explains, "Examining Quinn's many expressions of creativity together—his art, collecting, and acting—we can see that he was a creative genius".

Early in life Quinn had an interest in painting and drawing. Throughout his teenage years he won various art competitions in California and focused his studies at Polytechnic High School in Los Angeles on drafting. Later, Quinn studied briefly under Frank Lloyd Wright through the Taliesin Fellowship — an opportunity created by winning first prize in an architectural design contest. Through Wright's recommendation, Quinn took acting lessons as a form of post-operative speech therapy, which led to an acting career that spanned over six decades.

Apart from art classes taken in Chicago during the 1950s, Quinn never attended art school; nonetheless, taking advantage of books, museums, and amassing a sizable collection, he managed to give himself an effective education in the language of modern art. By the early 1980s, his work had caught the eyes of various gallery owners and was exhibited internationally in Mexico City, Los Angeles, New York City and Paris. His work is now represented in both public and private collections throughout the world.

He wrote two memoirs, "The Original Sin" (1972) and "One Man Tango" (1997), a number of scripts, and a series of unpublished stories currently in the collection of his archive.


Quinn made an appearance at the John Gotti trial, according to John H. Davis, author of Mafia Dynasty: The Rise and Fall of the Gambino Crime Family. He told reporters he wanted to play Paul Castellano, the boss of the Gambino family after Carlo Gambino. Gotti had Castellano murdered, becoming the boss of the Gambino family thereafter. Gotti was on trial concerning a variety of felony charges when Quinn visited the courtroom.

Although he tried to shake hands with Gotti, federal marshals prevented him from doing so, Davis says. The actor interpreted the testimony of Sammy ("The Bull") Gravano, Gotti's underboss, against Gotti as "a friend who betrays a friend." He had not come to "judge" Gotti, Quinn insisted, but only because he wanted to portray Castellano, who inspired the actor because he had had a "thirty-year-old" mistress, which Quinn believed was "a beautiful thing". He would later portray Gambino family underboss Aniello Dellacroce in the 1996 HBO film Gotti as well as Joe Masseria in the 1991 film Mobsters.

Quinn had a personal relationship with New York City Mafia crime boss Frank Costello and other Genovese gangsters.


Quinn spent his last years in Bristol, Rhode Island. He died of respiratory failure (due to complications from radiation treatment for lung cancer) on June 3, 2001, in Boston, at age 86. Quinn's funeral was held in the First Baptist Church in America in College Hill, Providence, Rhode Island. His wife asked for the permission of Bristol authorities to bury him in his favorite spot in the backyard of his house, near an old maple tree. They had bought the property in 1995; it had a view of the Narragansett Bay. Permission was granted and he was laid to rest there.

Tributes and legacy

Quinn's hand & footprints are outside the Grauman's Chinese Theatre

On January 5, 1982, the Belvedere County Public Library in East Los Angeles was renamed in honor of Anthony Quinn. The present library sits on the site of his family's former home.

In 1984, artist Eloy Torrez produced a 70-foot (21 m) high portrait mural of Quinn titled both Anthony Quinn and The Pope of Broadway in Los Angeles. It depicts Quinn in his famous Zorba the Greek role, and it remains one of the largest portrait murals in California, United States. Both the portrait mural and Anthony Quinn himself are the subject of a 2018 Google Arts & Culture exhibit.

In his birthplace of Chihuahua, Mexico, there is a statue of Quinn doing his famous "Zorba the Greek" dance.

There is an Anthony Quinn Bay and Beach in Rhodes, Greece, just 2.7 miles (4.3 km) south of the village of Faliraki (also called Falirakion or Falirákion). Quinn bought the land during the filming of The Guns of Navarone in Rhodes; however, it was reclaimed by the Greek government in 1984 due to a change in property law.

Since 2002, the National Council of La Raza has given the Anthony Quinn Award for Excellence in Motion Pictures as an ALMA Award. His widow, Katherine Benvin Quinn, established the Anthony Quinn Foundation, which advocates the importance of arts in education.


Wikipedia article: Anthony Quinn Filmography

See also [ Zorba, aRRyana and I ] or, a session in which aRRyana learned to love "Zorba the Greek"

External links

Wikipedia article: Anthony Quinn
Note:   Anthony Quinn was a volunteer at the Hollywood Canteen
Jump to: Main PageMicropediaMacropediaIconsTime LineHistoryLife LessonsLinksHelp
Chat roomsWhat links hereContact informationCategory:Root