Telly Savalas Overview:

Legendary character actor, Telly Savalas, was born Aristotelis Savalas on Jan 21, 1922 in Garden City, NY. Savalas died at the age of 72 on Jan 22, 1994 in Universal City, CA .


Shaven-headed, strong-faced, and grinning American character star of Greek parentage. He switched from being a TV executive to an actor in the late 1950s. His slightly unbalanced features got him cast as psychopathic villains, and it was only with his great personal success as the tough detective in the TV series Kojak that he managed to break the mold. His attempts at direction on that series were very promising. Nominated for an Academy Award in Birdman of Alcatraz. Died from prostate cancer.

(Source: available at Amazon Quinlan's Film Stars).



Although Savalas was nominated for one Oscar, he never won a competitive Academy Award.

Academy Awards

YearAwardFilm nameRoleResult
1962Best Supporting ActorBirdman of Alcatraz (1962)Feto GomezNominated

He was honored with one star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in the category of Motion Pictures.

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Telly Savalas Quotes:

Sheriff Franciscus: I could put the next bullet between your eyes! But you're not gonna die that easy, punk!

Ernst Stavro Blofeld: I've taught you to love chickens, to love their flesh, their voice.

Lord Bostwick: A fallen horse near Piccadilly caused a terrible congestion. How the traffic will flow when it is all motorized.

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Best Supporting Actor Oscar 1962

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Telly Savalas on the
Hollywood Walk of Fame

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Telly Savalas Facts
He wasn't the first choice to audition for "Kojak" (1973), when Marlon Brando had been offered the role.

His younger brother, George Savalas, starred in "Kojak" (1973) with him.

Nicollette Sheridan, daughter of his companion Sally Sheridan, considered him as her father.

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