Celebrities who died much too soon

by juliette-smits | created - 16 Oct 2018 | updated - 17 Oct 2018 | Public

1. Rudolph Valentino

Actor | The Sheik

Hollywood's original Latin Lover, a term that was invented for Rudolph Valentino by Hollywood moguls. Alla Nazimova's friend,Natacha Rambova (nee Winifred Hudnut) became romantically involved with Rudy and they lived together in her bungalow, from 1921 (during the filming of Camille) until they ...

2. Alvin Ailey

The Turning Point

Ailey was born in the rural town of Rogers, Texas, USA. His childhood memories and experiences often informed his choreography; the most notable of his works was "Blues Suite", "Cry" (choreographed for Judith Jamison), and "Revelations", a ballet based on Ailey's observations and experiences in ...

3. Otis Redding

Soundtrack | Top Gun

Otis Redding was born on September 9, 1941 in Dawson, Georgia, USA as Otis Ray Redding Jr. He was married to Zelma Atwood. He died on December 10, 1967 in Madison, Wisconsin, USA.

4. Paul Walker

Actor | The Fast and the Furious

Paul William Walker IV was born in Glendale, California. He grew up together with his brothers, Caleb and Cody, and sisters, Ashlie and Amie. Their parents, Paul William Walker III, a sewer contractor, and Cheryl (Crabtree) Walker, a model, separated around September 2004. His grandfather, William ...

5. Cory Monteith

Actor | Glee

Cory Monteith was born on May 11, 1982 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada as Cory Allan Michael Monteith. He was an actor, known for playing the singing jock Finn on the American TV show Glee (2009) and films such as Monte Carlo (2011), and Final Destination 3 (2006). He died on July 13, 2013 in Vancouver...

6. Ryan Dunn

Actor | Close-Up

Ryan Dunn (June 11, 1977 - June 20, 2011) was an American reality television personality, actor and stunt man. He was a member of the Jackass and Viva La Bam crew.

Ryan Matthew Dunn was born in Medina, Ohio, to Linda Sue (Reese) and Ronald James Dunn. He came to prominence as a member of the CKY ...

7. Corey Haim

Actor | The Lost Boys

Corey Haim was born in Toronto, Ontario, to Judy Haim, an Israeli-born data processor, and Bernie Haim, a clothing sales representative. He has a sister, Carol, and a half-brother, Daniel. His family is Jewish. He was raised mostly in Willowdale.

Corey appeared in 26 episodes of the early 1980s ...

8. Brittany Murphy

Actress | Just Married

Brittany Murphy was born Brittany Anne Bertolotti on November 10, 1977 in Atlanta, Georgia, to Sharon Kathleen Murphy and Angelo Joseph Bertolotti. Her father's ancestry is Italian, and her mother is of Irish and Slovak descent. Her father moved the family back to Edison, New Jersey as a native New...

9. Heath Ledger

Actor | Brokeback Mountain

When hunky, twenty-year-old heart-throb Heath Ledger first came to the attention of the public in 1999, it was all too easy to tag him as a "pretty boy" and an actor of little depth. He spent several years trying desperately to sway this image, but this was a double-edged sword. His work comprised ...

10. Brad Renfro

Actor | Apt Pupil

Brad Renfro was born on July 25, 1982 in Knoxville, Tennessee, to Angela Denise McCrory and Mark Renfro, a factory worker. He was discovered at age 10 by director Joel Schumacher and was cast in the motion picture The Client (1994), which starred Susan Sarandon and Tommy Lee Jones. Although this ...

11. River Phoenix

Actor | My Own Private Idaho

River Phoenix was born River Jude Bottom in Madras, Oregon. His mother, Arlyn (Dunetz), a Bronx-born secretary, and his father, John Bottom, a carpenter, met in California in 1968. They worked as itinerant fruit pickers, and later joined the Children of God religious group (John was originally ...

12. Brandon Lee

Actor | The Crow

Born on February 1, 1965 to Bruce Lee (Martial Arts idol) and Linda Lee Cadwell. Brother to Shannon Lee. In 1970-71, they moved to Hong Kong where Brandon became fluent in Cantonese by the age of 8. He attended Boston's Art-Oriented Emerson College in Massachusetts. He studied Martial Arts and ...

13. John Belushi

Actor | Saturday Night Live

John Belushi was born in Chicago, Illinois, USA, on January 24, 1949, to Agnes Demetri (Samaras) and Adam Anastos Belushi, a restaurant owner. His father was an Albanian immigrant, from Qytezë, and his mother was also of Albanian descent. He grew up in Wheaton, where the family moved when he was ...

14. Bruce Lee

Actor | Meng long guo jiang

Bruce Lee remains the greatest icon of martial arts cinema and a key figure of modern popular media. Had it not been for Bruce Lee and his movies in the early 1970s, it's arguable whether or not the martial arts film genre would have ever penetrated and influenced mainstream North American and ...

15. Marilyn Monroe

Actress | Some Like It Hot

Marilyn Monroe was an American actress, comedienne, singer, and model. She became one of the world's most enduring iconic figures and is remembered both for her winsome embodiment of the Hollywood sex symbol and her tragic personal and professional struggles within the film industry. Her life and ...

16. James Dean

Actor | East of Eden

James Byron Dean was born February 8, 1931 in Marion, Indiana, to Mildred Marie (Wilson) and Winton A. Dean, a farmer turned dental technician. His mother died when Dean was nine, and he was subsequently raised on a farm by his aunt and uncle in Fairmount, Indiana. After grade school, he moved to ...

17. Jean Harlow

Actress | Bombshell

Harlean Carpenter, who later became Jean Harlow, was born in Kansas City, Missouri, on March 3, 1911. She was the daughter of a successful dentist and his wife. In 1927, at the age of 16, she ran away from home to marry a young businessman named Charles McGrew, who was 23. The couple pulled up ...

18. Jimi Hendrix

Soundtrack | Woodstock

Widely regarded as the greatest and most influential guitarist in rock history, Jimi Hendrix was born on November 27, 1942 in Seattle, Washington, to African-American parents Lucille (Jeter) and James Allen Hendrix. His mother named him John Allen Hendrix and raised him alone while his father, Al ...

19. Jim Morrison

Soundtrack | Forrest Gump

Jim Morrison was born on December 8, 1943 in Melbourne, Florida, to Clara Virginia (Clarke) and George Stephen Morrison, a U.S. Naval Officer who fought in World War II. Jim eventually became so estranged from his parents that he would later claim that they were dead. Not much is known about his ...

20. Kurt Cobain

Soundtrack | Moulin Rouge!

Kurt Cobain was born on February 20 1967, in Aberdeen, Washington. Kurt and his family lived in Hoquiam for the first few months of his life then later moved back to Aberdeen, where he had a happy childhood until his parents divorced. The divorce left Kurt's outlook on the world forever scarred. He...

21. Sam Cooke

Soundtrack | Innerspace

Sam Cooke was born January 22, 1931 in Clarksdale, Mississippi. He was one of eight children of Charles Cook Sr., a Baptist minister. When Sam sang as a little boy in church, everyone made note that his voice had "something special". He sang in church and in local gospel choirs until a group called...

22. John Lennon

Actor | A Hard Day's Night

John Winston (later Ono) Lennon was born on October 9, 1940, in Liverpool, England, to Julia Lennon (née Stanley) and Alfred Lennon, a merchant seaman. He was raised by his mother's older sister Mimi Smith. In the mid-1950s, he formed his first band, The Quarrymen (after Quarry Bank High School, ...

23. Marvin Gaye

Soundtrack | R.I.P.D.

Marvin Gaye was born on April 2, 1939 in Washington, District of Columbia, USA as Marvin Pentz Gay Jr. He was married to Jan Gaye and Anna Gordy Gaye. He died on April 1, 1984 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

24. Buddy Holly

Soundtrack | Mr. Nobody

Buddy Holly was born on September 7, 1936 in Lubbock, Texas, USA as Charles Hardin Holley. He was married to Maria Elena Santiago. He died on February 3, 1959 in Clear Lake, Iowa, USA.

25. Ritchie Valens

Soundtrack | Grease

Ritchie Valens was born on May 13, 1941 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Richard Steven Valenzuela. He died on February 3, 1959 in Clear Lake, Iowa, USA.

26. The Big Bopper

Soundtrack | True Romance

The Big Bopper was born on October 24, 1930 in Sabine Pass, Texas, USA as Jiles Perry Richardson Jr. He was married to Adrianne Joy Fryon. He died on February 3, 1959 in Clear Lake, Iowa, USA.

27. Jeff Buckley

Soundtrack | Jeff Buckley: Everybody Here Wants You

Jeff Buckley was born on November 17, 1966 in Anaheim, California, USA as Jeffrey Scott Buckley. He died on May 29, 1997 in Memphis, Tennessee, USA.

28. Eddie Cochran

Soundtrack | Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

Eddie Cochran was born as Edward Raymond Cochran on October 3, 1938 in Albert Lea, Minnesota. When Eddie was 14, his parents moved to Bell Gardens, California where he began playing the guitar. In 1954, Eddie joined a local band with songwriter Hank Cochran where Eddie performed as the second ...

29. Brian Jones

Soundtrack | Mord und Totschlag

Jones was born on 28 February, 1942, to Lewis and Louise Jones. He had two sisters, Pamela and Barbara. Pamela died when Brian was still a child. He fathered his first of several children in high school and was subsequently made to leave. In the early 1960s, Brian formed the legendary group, The ...

30. Janis Joplin

Soundtrack | Watchmen

Janis Lyn Joplin was born at St. Mary's Hospital in the oil-refining town of Port Arthur, Texas, near the border with Louisiana. Her father was a cannery worker and her mother was a registrar for a business college. As an overweight teenager, she was a folk-music devotee (especially Odetta, ...

31. Andy Gibb

Soundtrack | Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle

A blessing or a curse? Every silver lining has a cloud, yet sadly Andrew Roy Gibb had to find that out the hard way. Born the fifth and final child to parents Barbara (17 November 1920-12 August 2016) and Hugh Gibb (15 January 1916-6 March 1992) Andy grew up with his three older siblings dominating...

32. Hank Williams

Soundtrack | The Last Picture Show

Hank Williams was born in September 1923 in a small Alabama farming community about 70 miles south of Montgomery. His father was a railroad engineer who was also a victim of shell shock after a year of fighting in France in 1918 during World War I and spent many years in veterans hospitals. Hank's ...

33. Elvis Presley

Soundtrack | Tickle Me

Elvis Aaron Presley was born on January 8, 1935 in East Tupelo, Mississippi, to Gladys Presley (née Gladys Love Smith) and Vernon Presley (Vernon Elvis Presley). He had a twin brother who was stillborn. In 1948, Elvis and his parents moved to Memphis, Tennessee where he attended Humes High School. ...

34. Bob Marley

Soundtrack | Strange Days

Bob Marley was born on February 6, 1945, in Nine Miles, Saint Ann, Jamaica, to Norval Marley and Cedella Booker. His father was a Jamaican of English descent. His mother was a black teenager. The couple planned to get married but Norval left Kingston before this could happen. Norval died in 1955, ...

35. Jim Croce

Soundtrack | Django Unchained

Jim Croce was born on Sunday, January 10th, 1943 in a working-class section of Philadelphia, in an Italian-American family. While a teenager, he began playing the accordion, and then learning to play an acoustic guitar when he was 18. After a short stint in the U.S. Army, where he supposedly met ...

36. Keith Moon

Actor | Tommy

Keith John Moon was born to working class parents in Wembley, London, England, on the 23rd August, 1946. At the age of 12, he had joined the Sea Cadet Corp and was given his first musical instrument, the bugle. He left school by 15 and was in his first band, The Beachcombers; this was around the ...

37. Charlie Parker

Soundtrack | Se7en

Charles Christopher Parker Jr. was born on August 29, 1920, in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri, to Charles Parker Sr. and his 18-year-old wife Addie. His father ran out on the family when Charlie was just a little boy. When he was 11 his mother bought him an alto saxophone for his birthday. By ...

38. John Coltrane

Soundtrack | Vanilla Sky

John Coltrane was born on September 23, 1926 in Hamlet, North Carolina, USA as John William Coltrane. He was married to Alice Macleod and Juanita Grubbs. He died on July 17, 1967 in Huntington, Long Island, New York, USA.

39. Robert Johnson

Soundtrack | The Skeleton Key

Robert Johnson was born on May 8, 1911 in Hazlehurst, Mississippi, USA as Robert Leroy Johnson. He was married to Calleta "Callie" Craft and Virginia Travis. He died on August 13, 1938 in Greenwood, Mississippi.

40. Martin Luther King

Soundtrack | Freedom Writers

Martin Luther King Jr. was born on January 15, 1929, in Atlanta, Georgia. He was the son of Alberta Christine (Williams), a schoolteacher, and Martin Luther King Sr., a pastor of the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta. For Martin the civil rights movement began one summer in 1935 when he was six ...

41. Princess Diana

Self | Gala Performance

Diana was born July 1, 1961 at 7:45pm weighing 7lb 12oz at Park House, Sandringham, Norfolk, England. She had her christening at Sandringham Church in Norfolk. Her full name is Lady Diana Frances Spencer. On July 29, 1981 she married her Prince Charming - Prince Charles of Wales, the eldest son of ...

42. Sid Vicious

Soundtrack | The Astronaut's Wife

Along with fellow Sex Pistol member, Johnny Rotten, lanky, sneering, pock faced Sid epitomised the punk movement born in the mid 1970s in working class England. Sid Vicious (real name John Beverly) wasn't an original member of the Pistols, but rather joined the band after original bassist, Glen ...

43. Michael Hutchence

Soundtrack | Face/Off

Michael Hutchence is one of the greatest singers and performers in Australia's history, with a career that spanned 20 years. Born to Kelland Hutchence and Patricia Hutchence (a film and television make-up artist), Michael was the second of three children. He grew up in Hong Kong, USA, and Australia...

44. George Gershwin

Soundtrack | Manhattan

He was born Jacob Gershowitz, 26 September 1898, in Brooklyn, New York, of Russian-Jewish immigrants. As a boy he could play popular and classical works on his brother Ira's piano by ear. In 1913 he quit school to study music and began composing for Tin Pan Alley; by 1919 he had his first hit "...

45. Frédéric Chopin

Soundtrack | Paycheck

Frédéric François Chopin was born Fryderyk Franciszek Chopin, on March 1, 1810, in Zelazowa Wola, Masovia region, Duchy of Warsaw, Poland. His father, named Mikolaj (Nicolas) Chopin, was a Frenchman who came to Poland from Lorraine, and eventually became professor at Warsaw Lyceum. His mother, ...

46. Franz Schubert

Soundtrack | Minority Report

Schubert was musically educated at the "Hofkapelle" in Vienna where he sang as a boy but then had to quit in order to help his father at school. Four years later, he became an independent composer and was destined to live in poverty from then onwards. Having an introverted personality, Schubert ...

47. Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy

Soundtrack | Enemy of the State

Swedish opera singer Jenny Lind erected a plaque in Mendelssohn's memory at his birthplace, and established the Mendelssohn Scholarship Foundation, which makes an award to a British composer every two years. Biographers still debate the true nature of their relationship.

48. John F. Kennedy

Writer | Profiles in Courage

John Fitzgerald Kennedy was born on May 29, 1917 in Brookline, Massachusetts, to Rose Kennedy (née Rose Elizabeth Fitzgerald) and Joseph P. Kennedy. John was named after his maternal grandfather, John "HoneyFitz" Fitzgerald, the mayor of Boston. John was very ill as a child and was given the last ...

49. Anna Nicole Smith

Actress | Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult

Anna Nicole Smith was born on November 28, 1967 in Houston, Texas, USA as Vickie Lynn Hogan. She is known for her work on Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult (1994), Be Cool (2005) and Illegal Aliens (2007). She was married to J. Howard Marshall II and Billy Smith. She died on February 8, 2007 in ...

50. Tupac Shakur

Soundtrack | Poetic Justice

Born in New York City, Tupac grew up primarily in Harlem. In 1984, his family moved to Baltimore, Maryland where he became good friends with Jada Pinkett Smith. His family moved again in 1988 to Oakland, California. His first breakthrough in music came in 1991 as a member of the group Digital ...

51. The Notorious B.I.G.

Soundtrack | Bad Boys

Christopher Wallace, a.k.a. Biggie Smalls, was born on May 21, 1972 in Brooklyn, New York. He was the son of Jamaican parents, Voletta Wallace, a pre-school teacher, and George Latore, a welder and small-time politician. He was raised in the poor Brooklyn neighborhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant. ...

52. Eva Perón

Actress | La cabalgata del circo

Eva María Duarte was born into a small poor village, Los Toldos. When she was still a child she always knew she wanted to break out and get more than the others from her life. She wanted to become an actress. At the age of 15, she seduced the singer Agustín Magaldi to take her with him on his ...

53. Steve Irwin

Actor | Dr. Dolittle 2

Steve Irwin was born in 1962 to parents Lyn and Bob Irwin, who were animal naturalists. He shared the love for animals all his life, stemming from being raised at the Queensland Reptile and Fauna Park. There, he partook in daily duties of animal feeding and care. He quickly established himself with...

54. Aaliyah

Soundtrack | Romeo Must Die

Talented. Beautiful. Modest. These three words described R&B singer-turned-actress Aaliyah perfectly.

Aaliyah Dana Haughton was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Diane (Hankerson) and Michael Haughton. Her uncle was music manager Barry Hankerson and her brother is director Rashad Haughton. Aaliyah was ...

55. Duane Allman

Self | The History of Rock 'n' Roll

Duane Allman was born in Nashville, Tennessee in November 1946. On Christmas Day in 1960, Duane was given a motorcycle as a gift while his younger brother, Gregg Allman, got a guitar. A few months later, Duane wrecked his motorcycle in an accident, but traded in the spare parts for a guitar of his ...

56. Randy Rhoads

Soundtrack | Ghost Rider

Randy Rhoads was born on December 6, 1956 in Santa Monica, California, USA as Randall Williams Rhoads. He died on March 19, 1982 in Leesburg, Florida, USA.

57. Tammi Terrell

Soundtrack | Guardians of the Galaxy

Tammi Terrell was born on April 29, 1945 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA as Thomasina Winifred Montgomery. She died on March 16, 1970 in Philadelphia.

58. Stevie Ray Vaughan

Soundtrack | Unbreakable

Stevie Ray Vaughan was born on October 3, 1954 in Dallas, Texas, USA. He was married to Lenora "Lenny" Darlene Bailey. He died on August 27, 1990 in East Troy, Wisconsin, USA.

59. Freddie Mercury

Soundtrack | Metropolis

Freddie Mercury was born on the Tanzanian island of Zanzibar. His parents, Bomi and Jer Bulsara, sent him off to a private school in India, from 1955 til 1963. In 1964, he and his family flew to England. In 1966 he started his education at the Ealing College of Art, where he graduated in 1969. He ...

60. John Bonham

Soundtrack | The Song Remains the Same

John Bonham is still regularly voted in polls as the greatest and most influential rock drummer of all time, an opinion which has also been expressed by the likes of Roger Taylor of Queen, Dave Grohl of Nirvana and Chad Smith of the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

He started playing drums at the age of five ...

61. Gram Parsons

Soundtrack | Jerry Maguire

Gram Parsons was born on November 5, 1946 in Winter Haven, Florida, USA as Ingram Cecil Connor III. He was married to Gretchen Carpenter. He died on September 19, 1973 in Joshua Tree, California, USA.

62. Tim Buckley

Soundtrack | Lost Highway

Tim Buckley was born on February 14, 1947 in Amsterdam, New York, USA as Timothy Charles Buckley III. He was married to Judy Fern Brejot and Mary Guibert. He died on June 29, 1975 in Santa Monica, California, USA.

63. Marc Bolan

Soundtrack | G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra

Born on September 30, 1947 in London, England, Mark Bolan was always destined to be a star. Even as a teenager, he was already seeking fame. Well known as a sharp dresser, he was employed by a modeling agency and became a "John Temple Boy", wearing John Temple suits in their catalogs as well as ...

64. Gilles Villeneuve

Self | Gasoline

Gilles Villeneuve was born on January 18, 1950 in St.-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Québec, Canada as Joseph Gilles Henri Villeneuve. He was married to Johanne Barthe. He died on May 18, 1982 in Leuven, Flanders, Belgium.

65. Bon Scott

Soundtrack | The School of Rock

Ronald Belford Scott was born on July 9, 1946 in Kirriemuir, Scotland, UK. In 1952, the Scott family relocated to Australia. Bon's strong distaste for authority led him to quit his studies at the age of 15. Bon's earliest musical efforts were both on vocals and drums. His first "real" job in the ...

66. Yuri Gagarin

Self | First Flight to the Stars

Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin became the first man to enter deep space on April 12, 1961, when the Soviet cosmonaut made a flight that orbited Earth lasting one hour and 48 minutes in his Vostok 1 spacecraft. This accomplishment made the smiling Soviet pilot internationally famous as the first man to ...

67. Ronnie Van Zant

Soundtrack | Kingsman: The Secret Service

Ronnie Van Zant was born on January 15, 1948 in Jacksonville, Florida. He was the oldest son of six children (3 sisters and 2 brothers - musicians Donnie and Johnny). Ronnie attended Lee High School in Jacksonville with fellow band members Gary Rossington and Allen Collins. They soon formed what ...

68. Peter Tosh

Soundtrack | Pineapple Express

Peter Tosh was born on October 19, 1944 in Grange Hill, Jamaica as Winston Hubert McIntosh. He died on September 11, 1987 in Kingston, Jamaica.

69. Eddie Guerrero

Actor | WCW Thunder

One of the great Hispanic wrestlers, Eddie Guerrero grew up part of the famous wrestling family: The Guerreros. His father Gory Guerrero became a star in the U.S., an icon in Texas and a legend in Mexico. Eddie's brothers, Hector, Amadno and Chavo, Sr. also became wrestlers. Both Hector and Amando ...

70. Edie Sedgwick

Actress | Ciao Manhattan

Edie Sedgwick was a bright social butterfly whose candle of fame burned brightly at both ends. Born into a wealthy White Anglo-Saxon Protestant family of impressive lineage, Edie became a "celebutante" for her beauty, style, wealth and her associations with figures of the 1960s counterculture.

Edie ...

71. Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle

Actor | The Butcher Boy

Roscoe Arbuckle, one of nine children, was the baby of the family who weighed a reported 16 pounds at birth. Born in Smith Center, Kansas, on March 24, 1887, his family moved to California when he was a year old. At age eight he appeared on the stage. His first part was with the Webster-Brown Stock...

72. Montgomery Clift

Actor | From Here to Eternity

Edward Montgomery Clift (nicknamed 'Monty' his entire life) was born on October 17, 1920 in Omaha, Nebraska, just after his twin sister Roberta (1920-2014) and eighteen months after his brother Brooks Clift. He was the son of Ethel "Sunny" Anderson (Fogg; 1888-1988) and William Brooks Clift (1886-...

73. Judy Garland

Actress | The Wizard of Oz

One of the brightest, most tragic movie stars of Hollywood's Golden Era, Judy Garland was a much-loved character whose warmth and spirit, along with her rich and exuberant voice, kept theatre-goers entertained with an array of delightful musicals.

She was born Frances Ethel Gumm on 10 June 1922 in ...

74. Gérard Philipe

Actor | Le rouge et le noir

In 1940 Gerard left school and his parents wanted him be a lawyer. But soon his mother noticed that he was only interested in acting, although his father was against the idea. After timely intervention from Marc Allégret, who decided he showed some promise, Gerard's debut was in Claude Dauphin's ...

75. Steve McQueen

Actor | The Great Escape

He was the ultra-cool male film star of the 1960s, and rose from a troubled youth spent in reform schools to being the world's most popular actor. Over 25 years after his untimely death from mesothelioma in 1980, Steve McQueen is still considered hip and cool, and he endures as an icon of popular ...

76. Jayne Mansfield

Actress | The Girl Can't Help It

One of the leading sex symbols of the 1950s and 1960s, film actress Jayne Mansfield was born Vera Jayne Palmer on April 19, 1933 in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, the only child of Vera J. (nee Palmer; later Peers) and Herbert W. Palmer. Her parents were well-to-do, with her father a successful attorney ...

77. Sal Mineo

Actor | Rebel Without a Cause

Salvatore (Sal) Mineo Jr. was born to Josephine and Sal Sr. (a casket maker), who emigrated to the U.S. from Sicily. His siblings were Michael, Victor and Sarina. Sal was thrown out of parochial school and, by age eight, was a member of a street gang in a tough Bronx neighborhood. His mother ...

78. Oscar Wilde

Writer | The Picture of Dorian Gray

A gifted poet, playwright and wit, Oscar Wilde was a phenomenon in 19th-century England. He was illustrious for preaching the importance of style in life and art, and of attacking Victorian narrow-mindedness.

Wilde was born in Dublin, Ireland, in 1854. He studied at Trinity College in Dublin before ...

79. George Orwell

Writer | Nineteen Eighty-Four

Born the son of an Opium Agent in Bengal, Eric Blair was educated in England (Eton 1921). The joined the British Imperial Police in Burma, serving until 1927. He then travelled around England and Europe, doing various odd jobs to support his writing. By 1935 he had adopted the 'pen-name' of 'George...

80. Allen Collins

Soundtrack | Kingsman: The Secret Service

Allen Collins was born on July 19, 1952 in Jacksonville, Florida, USA as Larkin Allen Collins Jr. He was married to Kathy Evelyn Johns. He died on January 23, 1990 in Jacksonville.

82. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Soundtrack | Amadeus

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart grew up in Salzburg under the regulation of his strict father Leopold who also was a famous composer of his time. His abilities in music were obvious even when Mozart was still young so that in 1762 at the age of six, his father took him with his elder sister on a concert ...

83. Amy Winehouse

Soundtrack | Amy

Amy Jade Winehouse was born on September 14, 1983 in Southgate, London, England to Janis Holly Collins (previously: Janis Holly Winehouse; born: Janis Holly Seaton), a pharmacist & Mitchell "Mitch" Winehouse, a taxi driver. Her family shared her love of theater and music. Amy was brought up on jazz...

84. Bradley Nowell

Soundtrack | Hardcore Henry

Bradley Nowell was born on February 22, 1968 in Long Beach, California, USA as Bradley James Nowell. He was married to Troy Dendekker. He died on May 25, 1996 in San Francisco, California.

85. Freddie Prinze

Actor | Chico and the Man

Freddie Prinze was born Frederick Karl Pruetzel in New York City, New York, to a Puerto Rican mother, Aurea Elena Ruiz, and a German immigrant father, Edward Karl Pruetzel. Freddie grew up in the Washington Heights section of New York City. As a chubby child, he was often bullied, but was quite ...

86. Lisa 'Left Eye' Lopes

Soundtrack | Space Cowboys

Controversial, flamboyant, and spontaneous are probably the best words to describe Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes. Born in Philadelphia, and raised throughout the world as the daughter of a U.S. Army serviceman, Lisa Lopes became one of the most important trendsetters in the 1990s music scene. After ...

87. Philip Seymour Hoffman

Actor | The Master

Film and stage actor and theater director Philip Seymour Hoffman was born in the Rochester, New York, suburb of Fairport on July 23, 1967. He was the son of Marilyn (Loucks), a lawyer and judge, and Gordon Stowell Hoffman, a Xerox employee, and was mostly of German, Irish, English and Dutch ...

88. Lilyan Tashman

Actress | The Matrimonial Bed

Lilyan Tashman was born on October 23, 1896, in Brooklyn, New York, to Rose (Cook) and Morris Tashman. Her parents were Jewish immigrants, her father from Bialystok, Poland, and her mother from Germany. After toying with some stage work, she made her film debut with Experience (1921). That was her ...

89. Édith Piaf

Soundtrack | A Star Is Born

When one thinks of Edith Piaf, one thinks of love, sorrow and music. One did not breathe without the other two. Born in Paris practically on the streets on December 19, 1915, she struggled from day one, the daughter of street performers. The mother, a singer, eventually abandoned both Edith and her...

90. Hattie McDaniel

Actress | Gone with the Wind

After working as early as the 1910s as a band vocalist, Hattie McDaniel debuted as a maid in The Golden West (1932). Her maid-mammy characters became steadily more assertive, showing up first in Judge Priest (1934) and becoming pronounced in Alice Adams (1935). In this one, directed by George ...

91. Billie Holiday

Soundtrack | Minority Report

Billie Holiday was a true artist of her day and rose as a social phenomenon in the 1950s. Her soulful, unique singing voice and her ability to boldly turn any material that she confronted into her own music made her a superstar of her time. Today, Holiday is remembered for her masterpieces, ...

92. Ona Munson

Actress | Gone with the Wind

Ona Munson was born Owena Elizabeth Wolcott on June 16, 1903 in Portland, Oregon. She took singing and dancing lessons when she was a child. At the age of fourteen, Ona moved to New York City with her mother. She began her career performing in vaudeville. In 1919 she made her Broadway debut in ...

93. Jeanne Eagels

Actress | The Letter

Jeanne Eagels, one of the most intriguing stars of late silent films and the early talkies, was born Amelia Jean Eagles on June 26, 1890 in Kansas City, Missouri, to Edward and Julia Sullivan Eagles. Young Jean was part of an impoverished family of eight, with three brothers and two sisters. She ...



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