Jennifer Jason Leigh added the Jason to her stage name in tribute to Robards, a long-time family friend. She said, "I like the way it sounds between Jennifer and Leigh.".
As of 2005, he was the only actor to win consecutive best supporting actor Oscars (for _All the President's Men (1976)_qv) and Julia (1977)).
Attended Hollywood High School in Hollywood, CA, and played on the football, baseball, basketball, and track teams, at one time entertaining the idea of becoming a professional athlete.
Avoided films until age 37 because he felt his acting father, Jason Robards Sr., had sold out and tarnished his own reputation by "going Hollywood".
Father of actor Jason Robards III.
First lead role was in the 1953 off-Broadway production of "American Gothic" directed by José Quintero.
Has portrayed President Abraham Lincoln in Lincoln (1992), The Perfect Tribute (1991) and Abe Lincoln in Illinois (1964), President Ulysess S. Grant in The Civil War (1990) and The Legend of the Lone Ranger (1981), President Franklin D. Roosevelt in F.D.R.: The Last Year (1980) and fictional President Richard Monckton (A Richard Nixon-type) in Washington: Behind Closed Doors (1977).
He and Leonardo DiCaprio both received Oscar-nominations for portraying Howard Hughes. Robards was nominated for Melvin and Howard (1980) and DiCaprio for The Aviator (2004).
He has three children with Eleanor Pitman. He has two children with 'Lois O'Connor (I)'. He won an Emmy in 1988 for Inherit the Wind (1988) (TV).
He is more closely associated with the works of Eugene O'Neill than any other actor.
He studied drama at HB Studio in Greenwich Village in New York City.
He was awarded the American National Medal of the Arts in 1997 by the National Endowment of the Arts in Washington, DC.
He was nominated for a 1976 Joseph Jefferson Award for Best Guest Artist in a play, Hughie, at the Academy Festival Theatre in Chicago, Illinois.
He won an Oscar for playing Benjamin Bradlee in All the President's Men (1976), making him one of 12 actors to win the Award for playing a real person who was still alive at the evening of the Award ceremony (as of 2007). The other ten actors and their respective performances are: Spencer Tracy for playing Father Edward Flanagan in Boys Town (1938), Gary Cooper for playing Alvin C. York in Sergeant York (1941), Patty Duke for playing Helen Keller in The Miracle Worker (1962), Robert De Niro for playing Jake La Motta in Raging Bull (1980), Sissy Spacek for playing Loretta Lynn in Coal Miner's Daughter (1980), Jeremy Irons for playing Claus Von Bullow in Reversal of Fortune (1990) (1990),
His and Leonardo DiCaprio's Oscar nominations for playing Howard Hughes makes them only the second pair to both lose. Robards lost to Timothy Hutton, while DiCaprio lost to Jamie Foxx. Prior to that, only Fredric March and James Mason both lost Oscars for playing Norman Maine in the 1937 and 1954 versions of "A Star is Born". Subsequently, the only pair of actors to both lose an Oscar for playing the same part were Anthony Hopkins and Frank Langella for playing Richard Nixon. Previously, Marlon Brando and Robert De Niro both won for playing Vito Corleone. José Ferrer won while Gérard Depardieu was only nominated for playing Cyrano de Bergerac; and John Wayne won while Jeff Bridges was only nominated for playing Rooster Cogburn. Richard Burton and
In 1972, he was in a horrifying accident on a winding California road. He drove his car into the side of a mountain and nearly died. His acute drinking problem contributed to the accident. He slowly recovered after extensive surgery and facial reconstruction.
In 1978 he became the second actor to receive an Oscar, Emmy and Tony nomination in the same calendar year (for Julia (1977), "Washington: Behind Closed Doors" (1977) and "A Touch of the Poet," respectively).
In 1988, he became the 11th performer to win the Triple Crown of acting: Oscar, Tony, Emmy. Two Oscars: Best Supporting Actor, All the President's Men (1976), and Best Supporting Actor, Julia (1977). Tony: Best Actor, Play, "The Disenchanted" (1959). Emmy: Best Actor, Miniseries/Special: Inherit the Wind (1988) (TV).