Martin Landau Was The Most Handsome Comic Strip Artist Ever
Martin Landau's 60-year Hollywood career included working with Alfred Hitchcock, starring in the original Mission: Impossible, winning an Oscar for Tim Burton's Ed Wood, and, of course, guest-starring in HBO's Entourage (they nominated him for an Emmy just for refraining from punching the other douches in that show). But, before all that, he had a whole other career as a cartoonist who simply looked like he belonged in movies.
But dapper young Landau had no intention to get into acting: he freaking loved comics and dreamed about getting to draw silly crap for a living. That's why he lied about his age to get a job as a cartoonist at the New York Daily News, which put him to work on a popular comic strip called The Gumps. Landau started out drawing backgrounds and such, but those must have been fancy-ass backgrounds because he was soon ghost writing and drawing entire strips himself. He did that for five years and was making good bank, but then something happened that changed his whole life: he found out acting is easy as hell.
Part of Landau's job at the Daily News involved going to plays and drawing the cast. One day, he saw an actor so terrible that he figured even a dork like himself could do better. So, he quit his cushy cartoonist job to join the Actor's Studio, where he became best buds with some other out of work actor, a young "James Dean" type called James Dean.
Even after he made it to Hollywood, Landau's cartooning talents continued to come in handy: he helped Hitchcock with the storyboards in North by Northwest, bonded with Tim Burton over their shared cartooning background, and needed no additional training of fakery to play a doodle artist in the 2008 film Lovely, Still (Tom Cruise isn't the only Mission: Impossible actor who does his own stunts). By then he was still cartooning on his free time and collecting original comic strip art, because geekery is something that never truly dies, no matter how handsome life tries to make you. Sigh.
Follow Maxwell Yezpitelok's heroic effort to read and comment every '90s Superman comic at Superman86to99.tumblr.com.
Top Image: Netflix