Marlon Brando: Stories, Bio, And Facts You Didn't Know About The Legendary Actor

By | April 2, 2020

test article image
Marlon Brando on the set of The Wild One, directed by Laslo Benedek. (Photo by Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)

In A Streetcar Named Desire (1951), On The Waterfront (1953), and The Wild One (1954), Marlon Brando established himself as one of the great acting talents of the 20th century. With Brando, the facts and stories of his real life often mirror those of his best characters. He was a brooding, smoldering, menacing presence in person and moreso on screen, from the beginning through later work like The Godfather (1972) and Apocalypse Now (1979). From his early life as a grave digger to wearing cotton balls in his cheeks during his audition for The Godfather, Brando never made the obvious choice. Throughout a career that can only be described as quixotic Brando had massive highs and deep lows. He was essentially kicked out of Hollywood after becoming one of its biggest stars and then clawed his way back in the 1970s with a series of huge films, and on each one he acted weirder and weirder.

He was like Holden Caulfield as a young man

test article image
source: facebook

Born in Omaha, Nebraska in 1924, Marlon Brando spent much of his early years on the move. His family moved to Evanston, Illinois when he was just a boy and after his parents separated when he was 11 his mother moved with Brando and his two siblings to Santa Ana, California. Two years later, in 1937, his parents reconciled and they reconvened in Libertyville, Illinois, a small town north of Chicago. It was here that Brando, known as “Bud,” began mimicking the people around him and developing his character work.

As a teen he was sent to the Shattuck Military Academy in Minnesota but military life wasn’t for him. He didn’t like his teachers and he didn’t like his fellow students. He snuck out hung out in town until he was kicked out of school. When he was offered a chance to return he decided to drop out of school and become a gravedigger instead. As World War II got under way he attempted to enlist in the Army but a bad knee left him with a 4-F classification so he went to New York City instead.