One of the last survivors of Hollywood's golden age, movie legend Kirk Douglas, has died.
His son, actor Michael Douglas, announced his father's death Wednesday afternoon in Los Angeles. He was 103 years old.
The son of poor Russian Jewish immigrants, Douglas appeared in 90 films over a 60-year career.
He worked a number of different jobs to pay for his college education and to study at New York's American Academy for Dramatic Arts.
Douglas appeared in his first film in 1946 following a brief career on Broadway and serving in the Navy in World War II. His title role in 1949's The Champion, playing a merciless boxer who refused to let anyone get in his way, cemented his stardom and brought his first Oscar nomination.
Tall with a strong handsome face and a cleft in his chin that became his trademark, Douglas became a major star in the 1950s and 1960s — earning two more Oscar nominations for The Bad and the Beautiful and as painter Vincent van Gogh in Lust for Life.
Appearing in 1959's Spartacus, Douglas hired screenwriter Dalton Trumbo, who had been blacklisted in Hollywood for alleged communist activities, forcing him to write under pseudonyms and forgoing credit for his work.
Douglas openly defied the blacklist by hiring Trumbo and allowing him to write the script for Spartacus under his own name, openly and without fear.
Douglas suffered a major stroke in 1995 that nearly killed him. But he recovered enough to write his best-selling autobiography The Ragman's Son, write fiction, and make occasional film and stage appearances, including his critically acclaimed one-man autobiographical show Before I Forget.
Despite his screen image as powerful, tough and ruthless, those who knew Douglas off-screen called him a gentle, compassionate and charitable man who loved children and donated millions to various charities.
"My mother said to me, 'You must take care of other people,' " he once said. "That stayed with me."