Charlton Heston

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Charlton Heston (October 4, 1923 – April 5, 2008) was an American actor of film, theatre and television.[1][2][3]

Heston is known for having played heroic roles, such as Moses in The Ten Commandments, Taylor in Planet of the Apes, twice as Andrew Jackson in The President's Lady and The Buccaneer; the eponymous characters of El Cid and Judah Ben Hur in Ben-Hur, for which he won the Academy Award for Best Actor.

Heston was also known for his political activism. In the 1950s and 1960s he was one of a handful of Hollywood actors to speak openly against racism and was an active supporter of the Civil Rights Movement. Initially a moderate Democrat, he later supported conservative Republican policies and was president of the National Rifle Association from 1998 to 2003.


Early years

Heston was born John Charles Carter, the only child of Lilla (née Charlton; 1899–1994) and Russell Whitford Carter (1897–1966), a mill operator.[4] Most sources state that he was born in Evanston, Illinois.[5][6][7] Heston's autobiography,[8] however, and some other sources place his birth in No Man's Land, Illinois, which usually refers to a then-unincorporated area now part of Wilmette, a well-off northern suburb of Chicago. The confusion stems from Heston being born in an Evanston hospital at a time when the family lived in the Wilmette area.[9] Heston said in a 1995 interview that he was not very good at remembering addresses or his early childhood.[10]

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