Paul Leonard Newman was an American actor, film director, entrepreneur, humanitarian, and auto racing enthusiast. He won numerous awards, including an Academy Award for best actor for his performance in the 1986 Martin Scorsese film The Color of Money and eight other nominations, three Golden Globe Awards, a BAFTA Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award, a Cannes Film Festival Award, an Emmy award, and many honorary awards. He also won several national championships as a driver in Sports Car Club of America road racing, and his race teams won several championships in open wheel IndyCar racing.
Newman was a co-founder of Newman’s Own, a food company from which Newman donated all post-tax profits and royalties to charity. As of August 2010, these donations had exceeded US $300 million.
Newman was born in Shaker Heights, Ohio, the son of Theresa and Arthur Samuel Newman, who ran a profitable sporting goods store. Newman’s father was Jewish, the son of immigrants from Poland and Hungary; Newman’s mother, who practiced Christian Science, was born to a Slovak Roman Catholic family at Pti?ie in the former Austria?Hungary. Newman had no religion as an adult, but described himself as “a Jew”, stating that “it’s more of a challenge”. Newman’s mother worked in his father’s store, while raising Paul and his brother, Arthur, who later became a producer and production manager.
Newman showed an early interest in the theater, which his mother encouraged. At the age of seven, he made his acting debut, playing the court jester in a school production of Robin Hood. Graduating from Shaker Heights High School in 1943, he briefly attended Ohio University in Athens, Ohio, where he was initiated into the Phi Kappa Tau fraternity.