Kirk Douglas earned his first Oscar nomination for playing the dogged boxer Midge Kelly in a black-and-white drama written by Carl Forman (“High Noon”).
Ace in the Hole (1950)
In one of Billy Wilder’s most cynical dramas, Douglas plays a ruthless journalist who exploits a mining disaster — even sabotaging rescue efforts at one point — to prolong the media furor.
The Bad and the Beautiful (1951)
He earned his second Oscar nomination playing another cad — this time a power-obsessed Hollywood producer said to be modeled on David O. Selznick.
Lust for Life (1956)
In a departure from his cynical big-screen roles, Douglas brought real sympathy to his portrayal of tortured artist Vincent Van Gogh in Vincente Minnelli’s biopic — and the actor earned his third Oscar nomination for Best Actor.