George Hilton (actor)

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George Hilton
Vado l ammazzo e torno-George Hilton.jpg
Hilton in Any Gun Can Play (1967)
Born
Jorge Hill Acosta y Lara[1]

(1934-07-16)July 16, 1934
DiedJuly 28, 2019(2019-07-28) (aged 85)
OccupationActor
Years active1956–2019

George Hilton, born Jorge Hill Acosta y Lara (July 16, 1934 – July 28, 2019),[1] was a Uruguayan actor well known for his many spaghetti western performances. Sometimes credited as Jorge Hilton, he appeared in over 20 Euro-westerns as well as several Giallo and action films.

Biography[edit]

Born in Montevideo, Uruguay. He began his career working in radio. In 1955 he moved to Argentina, adopting the pseudonym Jorge Hilton. He soon began to appear in several soap operas and film production for Argentina's domestic market.

In 1963 he moved to Italy, following the footsteps of other famous South American actors such as the Argentines Jorge Rigaud and Alberto de Mendoza, who were attracted by the thriving Italian film industry of the '60s. After Anglicizing his name to George, he got the lead role in The Masked Man Against the Pirates (Il corsaro nero nell'isola del Tesoro, 1965) and appeared in the Franco and Ciccio Bond spoof comedy Due mafiosi contro Goldginger, directed by Giorgio Simonelli.

His career in the Euro-western genre was launched by director Lucio Fulci with the film The Brute and the Beast (1966), starring Franco Nero, where his supporting role made him an instant icon in the genre. In 1967 he appeared to even greater effect as "Stranger" in Any Gun Can Play (also known as Go Kill and Come Back) with Edd Byrnes and Gilbert Roland. In the following year he participated in seven productions, enhancing his international reputation and garnering him significant attention, especially in Spain. Soon Hilton became one of the major stars of spaghetti westerns, eventually playing Sartana in the last film of the "Sartana" series, Sartana's Here… Trade Your Pistol for a Coffin, after Gianni Garko left the role. His most famous character is arguably that of the gunslinger Allelujah (or Hallelujah) in They Call Me Hallelujah (1971), created with director Giuliano Carnimeo, who also directed the sequel involving the same character (Return of Hallelujah, 1972) as well as Man Called Invincible (1973), in which Hilton played Tresette, another of his famous roles. Besides westerns, Hilton appeared in numerous "gialli" (mostly in the 1970s), and in more conventional crime and action films after the spaghetti western craze ended.

In his last years Hilton reduced his film appearances but nevertheless remained active, and he is still fondly remembered as one of the biggest stars of Italian cinema, along with Terence Hill, Franco Nero and Giuliano Gemma. His legacy as a film star also remains intact, with Hilton asked to do many interviews and retrospectives on his film career on a regular basis.[1][2]

On July 28, 2019, Hilton's former wife and partner released a statement on his social media accounts announcing Hilton had died after a long undisclosed illness in Rome, Italy.[3]

Selected filmography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Retrospective week dedicated to George Hilton (plus 2018 studio interview) Filmoteca: Movie Themes. Retrieved November 30, 2018, Televisión Pública Argentina (in Spanish)
  2. ^ Massacre Time (Le colt cantarono la morte e fu... tempo di massacro - 1966) and studio interview with George Hilton 11-27-2018, Filmoteca, Film Themes (on YouTube) (in Spanish)
  3. ^ "Addio a George Hilton, icona dello spaghetti western". Il Tempo (in Italian). July 29, 2019. Retrieved July 29, 2019.

External links[edit]