All the people that are on this list were huge stars during show business’s “Golden Age,” which lasted from the 1910s to the 1960s, and believe it or not, they’re all still alive! However, just because you don’t hear much about them these days doesn’t mean they’ve died; in fact, many of them are still working in the entertainment industry! Keep reading to find out just who exactly are these golden age entertainers!
Betty White is arguably Hollywood’s most beloved actress, and thank goodness she’s still alive and well! She currently holds the world record for the longest television career, and she most recently voiced Bitey White in Toy Story 4. According to the American people, Betty White is a national treasure who needs to be safeguarded at all costs.
You may not recognize his name, but you are most likely familiar with his role as Mr. Feeny on the 1990s sitcom Boy Meets World. He recently reprised his role as Mr. Feeny in the Disney spinoff show Girl Meets World, and he recently starred as KITT in the 2020 HBO Max film Superintelligence.
Sophia Loren, an Italian beauty, was one of Hollywood’s “it” girls during the Golden Age. Two Women (1961); and Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow (1963) are two of her notable performances. She returned in an Italian short film adaptation of the play The Human Voice in 2013, and she starred in the Italian film The Life Ahead in 2020.
Sir Phillip Anthony Hopkins is best known for his role as Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs, which he played in 1991. But, you might wonder, what has he been up to lately. He played Odin in Thor: Ragnarok in 2017, and he’ll play Dr. Phillip Lewis in Elyse.
Bob Barker is a well-known television personality who hosted The Price Is Right from 1972 to 2007. From 1956 to 1974, he was the host of Truth or Consequences. Most of you may not know it, but you have heard of his voice before! In an episode of Spongebob Squarepants, Barker voiced the character Bob Barnacle!
It isn’t easy to keep track of all the iconic roles that Dame Julie Andrews has played over the years! The Sound of Music and Mary Poppins are two of the most well-known. She starred as Karathen in Aquaman in 2018 and will voice Marlena in Minions: The Rise of Gru. She hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down, and we’re perfectly fine with that.
Dick Van Dyke
Dick Van Dyke has proven that he can do it all as an actor, singer, writer, comedian, and dancer. He got his start in show business on radio and Broadway, then on The Dick Van Dyke Show as Rob Petrie. On the TV show Kidding, he recently voiced Hopscotch the Sasquatch.
Mel Brooks, whose real name is Melvin Kaminsky, has a seven-decade career in the entertainment industry. He’s even on the “EGOT” list, which includes people who have won an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony. Brooks recently voiced Dracula’s father, Vlad, in the film Hotel Transylvania.
Tony Bennett (born Anthony Dominick Benedetto) is an American singer specializing in traditional pop standards, big band, show tunes, and jazz. He is also a painter, with works on permanent public display in several institutions under his birth name. Tony Bennett’s distinctive singing voice has touched the hearts of many people over the years. He’s still going strong, and in 2014, he released the album Cheek to Cheek with Lady Gaga.
We’re grateful that Jon Voight, a.k.a. Angelina Jolie’s father, refuses to retire from acting. Since 2013, he’s played Mickey in the Ray Donovan series, and in 2021, he’ll star in the film Roe v. Wade! His Oscar-nominated performance as Joe Buck, a would-be gigolo in Midnight Cowboy, catapulted him to fame in the late 1960s.
Jerry Lee Lewis
Jerry Lee Lewis, aka “The Killer,” is a wild man and one of the most influential pianists of the twenty-first century. Unfortunately, he was involved in some scandals when he was younger, which hampered his career as a musician, but he eventually rose to prominence as a successful country artist. He still performs regularly and is currently working on a new album. Lewis has been married seven times in his life.
Sidney Poitier, a Bahamian-American actor, is known for roles in films such as Porgy and Bess and The Greatest Story Ever Told. He has also directed a few movies. Since his role as Henry Cobb in The Last Brickmaker in America in 2001, Poitier has been largely inactive in the acting world.
Loretta Lynn is one of country music’s golden girls, holding the title of most award-winning female country singer and songwriter. Lynn has released multiple gold albums over the course of his six-decade career in country music. She’s still performing today, and in 2018, CMT named her Artist of the Year.
Tommy Lee Jones
Tommy Lee Jones is best known for his roles in Batman Forever, The Fugitive, and Men in Black, with The Fugitive earning him several awards. Jones’s most recent roles include Duke Montana in The Comeback Trail and Jimmy Cleats in Wander.
Billy Dee Williams
Fans of Star Wars will be relieved to learn that Lando Calrissian, played by Billy Dee Williams, is still alive and well. He’s appeared in several other films over the years, most notably reprising his role as Lando in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker in 2019.
Norman Lloyd, now 106 years old, was an American actor, producer, and director who had a nearly century-long career in the entertainment industry. With a career that began in 1923, he worked in every major aspect of the industry, including theatre, radio, television, and film. Limelight, released in 1952, and Dead Poets Society, released in 1989, are two of his notable films. His most recent acting role was in the romantic comedy Trainwreck, which was released in 2015.
Marla Gibbs is best known for her role as Marla Jefferson on the television show The Jeffersons, which ran from 1975 to 1985. She’s won a slew of awards for her acting abilities, and she’s most recently appeared in the films Please Stand By and Love Jacked. Did you know that her career has spanned over five decades?
On The Addams Family, you might recognize John Astin as Gomez Addams, who IMDB describes as “usually mustachioed.” He majored in mathematics at Johns Hopkins University before discovering his passion for acting. He most recently appeared in Justice League Action in 2017 as Uncle Dudley.
Richard Chamberlain’s role as “Ralph de Bricassart” in the mini-series The Thorn Birds made him an international celebrity. Over the course of his career, he’s won three Golden Globe awards, and he’s still going strong. In 2019, he starred in Twin Peaks and Finding Julia. He starred alongside Max von Sydow in the drama Echoes of the Past in 2020, but the film’s release date was postponed due to the pandemic.
Tippi Hedren began her career as a model before Alfred Hitchcock discovered her and cast her in The Birds in 1963. Since then, she’s appeared in over 80 films and television shows, with her most recent roles in the TV show Cougar Town in 2013 and the film The Ghost and the Whale in 2017.
Clu Gulager, the star of The Virginian, is now in his early 90s and has left the entertainment industry. He had a role in The Return of the Living Dead in 1985, but he didn’t get many bigger roles after that. He did, however, appear on shows such as North and South, Murder, She Wrote, MacGyver, Walker, Texas Ranger, and Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman regularly.
Kim Novak, who was born in 1933, was rumored to be the next Rita Hayworth for Columbia Pictures. She made her acting debut in the 1954 film Pushover but is best known for playing Madeleine Elster/Judy Barton in Alfred Hitchcock’s 1958 film Vertigo. Novak is now a photographer, poet, and visual artist rather than an actor.
George Hamilton has appeared in over 120 films, including Love Possessed and Love at First Bite. In 2019, he starred as Jack in the TV show Grace and Frankie and as Spencer Blitz in the film American Housewife. Hamilton began his film career in 1958, and while he has a large body of work in film and television, he is best known for his debonair demeanor and perpetual tan.
Eva Marie Saint
Eva Marie Saint is best known for her roles in On the Waterfront and North by Northwest, both directed by Elia Kazan. She is one of the last surviving stars from Hollywood’s Golden Age. Saint took a break from acting for more than a decade before returning in 1986 to play Tom Hanks’ character’s mother in Nothing in Common. She was most recently seen in Nickelodeon’s The Legend of Korra, where she played the elderly Katara.
Ed Asner is a versatile actor who can play both comedic and dramatic roles. On The Mary Tyler Moore Show, he played Lou Grant. He has been nominated for 20 Emmy Awards, tied with Mary Tyler Moore for the most. Perhaps most notably, he portrayed Santa Claus in the 2003 film Elf. Asner’s most recent role was as Mike Cosgrove in Teen Titans Go!
Jackie Mason (whose real name is Yacov Moshe Maza) is a controversial comedian who ranks among Comedy Central’s 100 greatest stand-up comedians of all time. Mason began his career as a rabbi before resigning when he realized his true calling was to tell jokes to his congregations.
This Swedish-American actress is well-known for her singing and dancing abilities, earning her the moniker “The Female Elvis.” She has appeared in the films Bye Bye Birdie and Viva Las Vegas, as well as performing several Elvis Presley covers, including “Heartbreak Hotel.” Ray Donovan and Happy! were two of her TV shows.
Gaslight (1944) and The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945) were among the first films in which British-American actress Dame Angela Lansbury appeared (1945). Her acting career has spanned nearly 80 years, and she has received five Tony Awards and an honorary Oscar. She is currently set to play Mrs. Garrington in Buddy Thunder’s Adventures.
Even if you don’t know Christopher Plummer’s name, you’ve probably seen him in one of the most famous musicals of all time: The Sound of Music. That’s right, he portrayed Captain Von Trapp himself in the film. Murder by Decree and The Return of the Pink Panther are two of his later works. His most recent project is voicing Rizzo in Heroes of the Golden Masks.
Chubby Checker is best known for popularizing the “twist” dance style as a rock ‘n roll singer and dancer, aside from having the best name ever. Throughout the 2000s, he released a few singles here and there, and in 2015, he produced “Rock and Roll to the Rescue,” a show dedicated to animal rescue.
Bob Newhart is best known for his deadpan delivery as a stand-up comedian, but he’s also done some acting. He made six guest appearances on The Big Bang Theory after starring Robert Hartley on The Bob Newhart Show. He has also appeared in Elf, Catch-22, and voiced in The Rescuers. He has recently appeared on the television shows Young Sheldon and Filthy Rich.
Paul Michael Glaser
Paul Michael Glaser is best known for his roles in the Starsky and Hutch television series and the 1971 film Fiddler on the Roof. He recently voiced Kjeld Playwell in Lego: The Adventures of Clutch Powers, and he played Leo in the TV show Grace and Frankie in 2019.
Carole Cook is an actress who has worked in musical theater, film, and television. In 1959, she became Lucille Ball’s protégé and went on to star in Broadway musicals like 42nd Street and Hello, Dolly! She hasn’t done much in the theater since 2006, but she did play Erika Ericson in the film Waiting in the Wings: Still Waiting and Pearl Goodfish in the television show Break a Hip in 2018.
Norman Lear is best known for producing and writing hit television shows like All in the Family, Sanford and Son, and One Day at a Time. He is now a political activist and served as executive producer for the One Day at a Time reboot in 2017. Since May of 2017, he’s been the host of a podcast called All of the Above With Norman Lear.
Due to hard times during the Great Depression, Larry Storch got his start in show business by working as a stand-up comedian for $12 per week instead of graduating from high school. That clearly paid off for him, as he went on to play Corporal Randolph Agarn on F Troop and in a slew of other TV shows and films. Storch is now semi-retired, but he still visits fans across the country and maintains a large social media presence.
Cicely Tyson is an actress and former model with a career spanning over 70 years! Over the years, she’s won and been nominated for a slew of awards, and she’s become known for portraying strong African-American female leads. She’s still very active in the industry; she last performed on stage in 2015, and she’ll be seen in the TV series Cherish the Day in 2020, as well as Alice in the film A Fall From Grace.
Harry Belafonte is regarded as one of history’s most successful Jamaican-American pop stars. Even if you’ve never heard of him, you’re probably familiar with his rendition of “The Banana Boat Song.” He’s become well-known for a variety of acting roles as well as popularizing the Calypso music style. In recent years, he’s been involved in political activism, documentaries, and the 2018 film BlacKkKlansman, in which he played Jerome Turner.
Nancy Sinatra, the younger sister of the legendary swooner Frank Sinatra, is best known for the song “These Boots Are Made For Walking,” which is undeniably an era-defining sound. After an illustrious career, Sinatra, who is now 80 years old, has retired to a peaceful life.