Who’s Montana’s Most Famous Movie Star? The Envelope Please…
There's just something special about going to the movie theater. You go, you get your ticket, you get your snacks (I'm a Junior Mint guy), you buy your 8 dollar soda and then you go find your seat and wait for the trailers. I mean, who doesn't love going to the movies, right?
The other day we were talking about the greatest Montana-based movies of all time (by the way, the votes are in and A River Runs Through It won by a landslide) so I thought, well what about the greatest Montana movie star of all time? I mean surely Montana has produced some movie stars, right?
Yes, yes we have.
Not all of the stars on our list were born in Montana, however, they all have lived here at some point or another. So, let's take a look, shall we?
First up, Carroll O'Conner. Most folks will know Mr. O'Conner as Archie Bunker from All In The Family, however, he was in several movies in his career. His final role came in 2000 when he appeared in Return To Me. O'Conner was a graduate of the University of Montana.
Michelle Williams was born in Kalispell back in 1980. Williams is a four-time Academy Award-nominated actress who has appeared in critically acclaimed films like Brokeback Mountain, My Week With Marilyn, Manchester By The Sea, and The Greatest Showman.
Academy Award Winner J.K Simmons is also a University of Montana alum. Simmons is knowns not only for his Farmers Insurance commercials but for also being a scene-stealer when it comes to motion pictures. Simmons won his Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in the 2015 film Whiplash. Simmons has appeared in blockbusters like the Spiderman series, as well as multiple other movies, and is one of the busiest men in the business.
Christopher Lloyd spent a few years living in the Bitterroot Valley. Lloyd, who most know from his time on the television show TAXI as the burnt-out hippie Jim, as well as Doc from the Back To The Future franchise. Lloyd also appeared in One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest.
Finally, there is the Hollywood legend Gary Cooper. Born in Helena, Copper who was a cowboy at heart loved living and working on the family ranch in Craig, Montana. In fact, Cooper would have been content with the ranching life if it wasn't for a Bozeman teacher that suggested that Mr. Cooper check out Debate and Dramatics. Cooper would later credit the teacher a changing force in his life. Gary Cooper would start out in silent pictures before moving on to the "talkies" where he would become one of the biggest stars in Hollywood. Cooper would be awarded three Academy Awards, two for best actor and one as an honorary award.