Reggie Dunlop was more Sam Allardyce than James Dean: a coach who finds a way of winning without playing the beautiful game.Reggie is not a Cool Hand Luke or Butch Cassidy type."The boxer is played by Paul Newman, an actor with an unfortunate resemblance in appearance, style and mannerisms to Marlon Brando.
One of his first important performances was as the troubled middleweight champ Rocky Graziano in Robert Wise's Somebody Up There Likes Me (1956).
His military career at the end of the Second World War wasn't especially distinguished.
As Levy tells us, Newman had yearned to be a pilot but "a routine eye test revealed that the blue eyes that would someday become world-famous were, in fact, colour-blind." Newman ended up serving as a radio man and gunner in the navy.
So I kept my mouth shut and my ears opened and that was the way I seemed to learn." Other Actors Studio alumni were famously introspective and self-obsessed, but Newman – at least by middle-age – was gregarious and genial. He used to claim that he had no physical grace and was a "failed jock" who had turned to the stage because he hadn't succeeded at sport.
"Paul Newman is a handsome boy, but quite stiff, to my disappointment," film-maker Fred Zinnemann said of him after auditioning him for a production of Oklahoma!