Home Samurai culture Who was Henry Silva? Tributes pour in as ‘Ocean’s 11’ and ‘The Manchurian Candidate’ star dies aged 95

Who was Henry Silva? Tributes pour in as ‘Ocean’s 11’ and ‘The Manchurian Candidate’ star dies aged 95

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Actor Henry Silva died on September 14, 2022. He was 95 years old.

Henry Silva was well known for his performances in popular movies like Ocean’s 11, The Manchurian Candidate, Johnny Coo, Sharky’s Machine, and Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai. He mostly played criminals or gangsters in his movies.

Henry’s son Scott Silva revealed that at the time of his death Henry was hospitalized at the Motion Picture & Television Country House and Hospital in Woodland Hills. He died of natural causes.


‘Great in Johnny Cool’: Twitter flooded with tributes to Henry Silva

Henry Silva was a famous name among the public for the many memorable performances he delivered throughout his career. Twitter was inundated with tributes when people heard of his passing:

RIP Henry Silva Terrific in Johnny Cool, Alligator, Sharky’s Machine & Ghost Dog but my first vivid memory of him is having a brutal martial arts fight with Sinatra in The Manchurian Candidate: youtu.be/sTcofHd5ILE https://t.co/l8TvzZR6i6

RIP to the legendary, the savage, the unforgettable Henry Silva. https://t.co/pvZopO44FL

Henry Silva had been stealing movies as characters since the 1950s, his Italian run is legendary and, most importantly, his screaming killer in SHARKY’S MACHINE is never far from my thoughts. true legend, RIP https://t.co/4DKlAN3SBo

RIP Henry Silva, a real piece of work in SHARKY’S MACHINE https://t.co/N9ApC4FnSx

RIP Henry Silva – appearing in nearly every genre picture between 1960 and 1990, he was riotous in the mental Megaforce and terrifying in the sensational Sharky’s Machine 💔 https://t.co/giCqkTR2qI

RIP to one of the biggest faces in film. Henry Silva’s career spanned from the mid-century studio system to the Italian poliziotteschi of the 70s to the independent movement of the 90s. As a hitman duo with Woody Strode in The Italian Connection and as an arrogant big game hunter in Alligator, he was iconic. https://t.co/165V2R5W9S


Henry Silva in the Entertainment Industry: Exploring His Career Trajectory

Born on September 23, 1926, Henry Silva left school at the age of 13 and began taking acting classes while working as a dishwasher and waiter in a Manhattan hotel. He then auditioned for the Actors Studio in 1955 and was accepted. He then appeared in the film version of the play, A rain hat.

Henry has been recognized for his performances as an antagonist in films like The Tall T, The Bravados and The Law, and Jake Wade. He portrayed a Venezuelan native living in the forest, Kua-Ko, in the 1959 adventure film, Green mansions. He rose to fame through his performances in Ocean 11 (1960), The Manchu Candidate and Sergeants 3 (1962).

Henry Silva was a popular actor (Image via Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
Henry Silva was a popular actor (Image via Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

Stepping away from his usual villainous roles, Silva tried out for a comedic role as one of the half-brothers in the semi-classic 1960 film adaptation of Cinderellaentitled Cinderella. He then made guest appearances on TV shows like The Outer Limits, The Untouchables, Gallery of the Night, Journey to the Bottom of the Sea, Thriller, and more.

Silva’s performance as Salvatore “Johnny Cool” Giordano in the 1963 gangster film johnny cool was acclaimed by critics and audiences. Following this, in 1965 he received an offer from an Italian film producer, who said he would play him as a hero. Silva started with the 1966 film Spaghetti Western, Blood on the mountainand had appeared in 25 Italian films by 1977.

He returned to the United States in the mid-1970s and starred opposite Frank Sinatra in Contract on Cherry Street. He became a familiar face in the film industry in the 80s and 90s and appeared in several successful films including Alligator, Escape from the Bronx, Cannonball Run II, Batman: The Animated Series, The New Batman Adventures and Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai.

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Silva also contributed to a 2012 feature documentary, Eurocrime! Italian cop and gangster movies that dominated the 70swho was helmed by Mike Malloy.


Silva died nine days before his 96th birthday. He is survived by his sons Scott and Michael.


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