Recently The New York Times ran a chart about the height of men who have won the Oscar for Best Actor. The tallest was John Wayne at 6’4”. The shortest, Richard Dreyfuss at 5′ 5″.
Hello Everybody. Mr. Joe Morella and Mr. Frank Segers here. MRS. Norman Maine out buying a tape measure.
Why is it that moviegoers seem obsessed with the height of male stars? No one seems to care how tall, or short, female stars are.
In The New York Times chart referenced above they only count 66 Oscar winners. There have been over 84 actors who have won Oscars as Best Actor. Perhaps records about height weren’t kept in the early days of Hollywood.
At any rate most of the winners fell into the 5’11” or 6 foot category. There were a few 6’2″ guys and a few 5′ 7″ ones, but only one really short guy.
For the last few years we’ve been blogging about our favorite short actor, Alan Ladd (above, who stood all of 5′ 6″ and unhappy about it). He was never even nominated for an Oscar as either best or best supporting actor, although he gave great performances in films such as This Gun for Hire, (above) The Glass Key, The Blue Dahlia and later, Shane.
One of our readers, Larry, had this insight: Veronica Lake was quite short which is why she was teamed with (Ladd) at the same studio. she previously had very little acting experience. other than “The Blue Dahlia,” she didn’t care much for the movies she made nor was she great friends with Alan off screen. But they did stay in touch from time to time. She also seemed to live a miserable, somewhat pauper’s life even after so-called fame.
Larry says he’s taken this info from Lake’s autobiography. Then he adds: for my taste the similarly height challenged Audie Murphy was the better actor and ironically was also self-destructive although he died in a plane crash.
We disagree. Murphy wasn’t any better, or worse, than Ladd. They were both competent, though short, stars. Murphy was 5′ 5″ tall.