Prior to heading for Owensboro, Kentucky, Walter had a 10-foot bullwhip delivered. He went to the roof of his West 44th Street apartment. The loud cracking attracted a trio of New York's finest (United Artists | PG-13 | 104 min | English).
1955 The Indian Fighter
Walter was cast on recommendation from Burt Lancaster to Kirk Douglas. The film was shot on location in Bend, Oregon. (United Artists | NR | 88 min | English)
1956 Bigger Than Life
The film was directed by cult filmmaker Nicholas Ray (Twentieth Century-Fox | NR | 95 min | English).
1957 A Face in the Crowd
A drama about media manipulation, the power of television, and the cult of celebrity (Warner Bros. | NR | 125 min | English).
1957 Slaughter on Tenth Avenue
Matthau is appropriately menacing as a brutal New York City waterfront racketeer ( | Universal Pictures | NR | 103 min | English).
1958 King Creole
Shot on location in New Orleans, Louisiana (Paramount Pictures | NR | 116 min | English).
1958 Voice in the Mirror
Walter said, "I was angry wth Harry Keller, the director. He asked, "Will you leave me alone? I'm really a cutter." Richard Egan said, "You see, Matthau's a New York actor. He likes to argue." (Universal Pictures | NR | 103 min | English)
The title concerns Andy Griffith's character's hair falling out and having an onion mixture applied to promote growth (Warner Bros. | NR | 111 min | English).
1958 Ride a Crooked Trail
An Audie Murphy Western about a thief who is mistaken for a lawman (Universal Pictures | NR | 87 min | English).
1960 Strangers When We Meet
A well-done film depicting a torrid suburban affair in Los Angeles before a repressed America would burst into the sexual revolution of the '60s (Columbia Pictures | PG 117 min | English).
1960 Gangster Story
Producers asked for a title. "Chopped Herring," Walter replied. "That's no title. They have to know there are gangsters." "You mean like 'Gangster Story?" Matthau wondered. "Great!" they exclaimed (RCIP | NR | 65 min | English).
1962 Lonely Are the Brave
Walter became friends with William Schallert, cast as the soft-spoken radio operator to Matthau's sheriff. The two remained pals for almost forty years, sharing a love of Mozart (Universal Pictures | PG | 107 min | English).
1962 Who’s Got the Action?
Matthau plays Tony Gagouts, a big-time bookie with an elaborately concealed electronic control room for his illegal numbers racket (Paramount Pictures | NR | 93 min | English).
1963 Island of Love
The film was shot on location in Athens and the Greek islands of Hydra and Spetsai (Warner Bros. | NR | 101 min | English).
1964 Ensign Pulver
Walter Matthau continues the role of Doc first played by William Powell in the classic and popular "Mister Roberts" (Warner Bros. | NR | 104 min | English).
1964 Fail Safe
A dark Cold War-era drama (Columbia Pictures | NR | 112 min | English).
Matthau's son, Charlie, was born the day after Charade finished shooting (Universal Pictures | NR | 113 min | English/French/German/Italian).
1964 Goodbye Charlie
As Matthau plays this role he keeps changing accents, sometimes aping Bela Lugosi, other times Peter Sellers (Twentieth Century-Fox | NR | 116 min | English).
Matthau was disappointed that he did not have a lot of screen time in the film (Universal Pictures | PG | 108 min | English).
1967 A Guide for the Married Man
Walter is the headliner before an array of superstars who make cameo appearances in short vignettes (Twentieth Century-Fox | PG | 89 min | English).
1966 The Fortune Cookie
Ironically, the film that mad him a movie star and won him an Oscar nearly killed him. Production was halted for five months after Walter had a serious heart attack with ten days left on the shoot (United Artists | PG | 125 min | English).
1966 The Odd Couple
The film version of Neil Simon's play is memorable for its classic comic bits, including an irate Oscar hurling a plate of linguine against a wall (Paramount Pictures | G | 105 min | English).
Matthau makes a cameo appearance as right-wing General Smight (Cinerama | R | 115 min | English).
1968 The Secret Life of an American Wife
Walter was reunited for this comedy with writer and director George Axelrod (Twentieth Century-Fox | 92 min | English).
1969 Cactus Flower
Matthau had romantic scenes with both Goldie Hawn and Ingrid Bergman (Columbia Pictures | PG | 103 min | English).
1969 Hello Dolly!
Walter Matthau quibbled with Barbra Streisand intensely on set. They became friendlier later in life (Twentieth Century-Fox | G | 142 min | English).
1971 A New Leaf
The film as delivered by Elaine May was drastically re-cut and shortened (butchered according to come) by Paramount before its release (Paramount Pictures | G | 102 min | English).
This movie is directed by Jack Lemmon. It was Lemmon's one and only film as a director (Cinerama | PG | 113 min | English).
1971 Plaza Suite
The film version of Neil Simon's play has three separate acts set in the same suite in New York's Plaza Hotel. Walter Matthau stars in a triple role (Paramount Pictures | PG-13 | 114 min | English).
1973 Charley Varrick
Walter Matthau won Best Actor at the British Academy Awards in 1973 for his role as Charley Varrick (Universal Pictures | PG | 11 min | English).
1973 The Laughing Policeman
Shot on location in San Francisco, Matthau enjoyed walking the streets of the hilly city between takes (Twentieth Century-Fox | R | 112 min | English).
1972 Pete ‘n’ Tillie
Walter Matthau won Best Actor at the British Academy Award (1973) for his role as Pete and was nominated for the Golden Globe Award in 1973 (Universal Pictures | PG | 100 min | English).
1974 The Front Page
Walter Matthau was nominated for the Golden Globe Award as Best Motion Picture Actor (Universal Pictures | PG | 105 min | English).
1974 The Taking of Pelham One Two Three
Though born and raised in New York City, at the time the movie was shot Matthau had not been on the subway system in many years (United Artists | R | 104 min | English).
The lives of innocent people are devastated when a major earthquake rips through Los Angeles and reduces the city to ruins (Universal Pictures | PG | 123 min | English).
1976 The Bad News Bears
Walter Matthau was nominated for the BAFTA Film Award as Best Actor (Paramount Pictures | PG | 102 min | English).
1975 The Sunshine Boys
Walter Matthau was nominated for the Golden Globe Award (1976), Academy Award (1976) and British Academy Award (1976) as Best Actor (United Artists | PG | 111 min | English).
1978 House Calls
The song Walter attempts to sing in the shower is Cherubino's song from Act II of Mozart's "Nozze di Figaro" (Universal Pictures | PG | 98 min | English/Spanish).
1978 California Suite
The movie was shot extensively inside and on the grounds of the famous Beverly Hills Hotel. Today a strict no-filming policy is enforced, sparing the camera-shy clebrity guests media hassle (Columbia Pictures | PG | 103 min | English).
1978 Casey’s Shadow
In April 1976, a decade after suffering a near-fatal heart attack, fifty-six-year-old Matthau underwent coronary bypass surgery. Three and a half months later, he began shooting this film (Columbia Pictures | PG | 117 min | English).
1981 First Monday in October
The film is based on a Jerome Lawrence-Robert E. Lee stage hit (Paramount Pictures | R | 98 min | English).
Glenda Jackson and Walter team again in this marvelous spoof of the world of spies (Avo Embassy Pictures | R | 104 min | English/French/German).
1980 Little Miss Marker
Walter Matthau was also the Executive Producer on this film (Universal Pictures | PG | 103 min | English).
1981 Buddy Buddy
Matthau plays a professional killer going by the name of Trabucco, on his way to rub out a gangster set to testify against the mob (MGM/UA | R | 96 min | English).
1982 I Ought to Be in Pictures
Matthau stars as a screenwriter who favors gambling and drinking (Twentieth Century-Fox | PG | 108 min | English/Spanish).
1983 The Survivors
Matthau stars opposite Robin Williams in this satire that lampoons America's obsession with guns (Columbia Pictures | R | 102 min | English).
1985 Movers & Shakers
This comedy was filmed on location in Los Angeles, California, USA (MGM/UA | PG | 80 min | English).
This was a physically challenging role which required sixty-five-year-old Matthau to wear a peg leg and heavy costumes (Cannon Films | PG-13 | 124 min | English).
1988 The Couch Trip
Director Michael Ritchie remembered co-star Dan Aykroyd had "tremendous admiration for Walter, and recognition of his formidable comic talents." (Orion Pictures Corp. | R | 96 min | English)
1988 Il Piccolo Diavolo (The Little Devil)
Walter Matthau plays a priest living in a residential college for priests in Rome, is called out one day to "exorcise" the devil from someone (Columbia Pictures | NR | 96 min | Italian).
Top-lining is Kevin Costner, playing New Orleans District Attorney Jim Garrison (Warner Bros. | R | 189 min | English).
1992 How The Grinch Stole Christmas!
A reading of the beloved Christmas story set to Dr. Seuss' original drawings, straight from the book. Walter's narration is warm and grandfatherly (Random House Home Video).
Walter Matthau plays Albert Einstein in this romantic, comedy film (Paramount Pictures | PG | 100 min | English/German).
1993 Dennis the Menace
20,000 children auditioned for the part of Dennis. Ten of them were selected to test the role with Walter Matthau (Warner Bros. | PG | 94 min | English).
1993 Grumpy Old Men
After filming this movie in Minnesota in freezing temperatures, Walter Matthau was hospitalized with double pneumonia (Warner Bros. | PG-13 | 103 min | English).
1995 The Grass Harp
This film, directed by Walter's son Charlie, is based on an autobiographical novella by Carol Matthau's friend, Truman Capote (Fine Line Features | PG | 107 min | English).
1995 Grumpier Old Men
Sophia Loren played his romantic interest; Matthau said, "I just love the idea of me fooling around with Sophia Loren." (Warner Bros. | PG-13 | 101 min | English)
1996 I’m Not Rappaport
Matthau's final serio-comic role is Old Nat Moyer, a Jewish talker, a philosopher, and a troublemaker with a fanciful imagination (Gramercy Pictures | PG-13 | 135 min | English).
1998 The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg
Aviva Kempner interviewed Walter for her documentary (Twentieth Century-Fox | PG | 90 min | English).
1998 The Odd Couple II
At the core of Neil Simon's follow-up to 'Odd Couple' is the story of a reunion between Oscar and Felix when the former's son marries the latter's daughter (Paramount Pictures | PG-13 | 97 min | English).
1997 Out to Sea
Care-free Charlie Gordon (Walter Matthau) cons his widower brother-in-law Herb (Jack Lemmon) into an expenses-paid luxury cruise in search of rich, lonely ladies (Twentieth Century-Fox | PG-13 | 109 min | English).
2000 Hanging Up
Walter Matthau's final film (Columbia Pictures | PG-13 | 94 min | English).