Edward G. Robinson, classic film star of Key Largo and Double Indemnity, was a Renaissance Man. Popcorn Talk presents 5 things you might not know about him.

Written by: Tami Goveia – May 10th, 2020 6:17pm pst

PTN Classic Film Corner: 5 Things You Didn’t Know About Edward G. Robinson

The ‘G’ in his name stands for Goldenberg. Born Emanuel Goldenberg, he changed his name when he went into acting. He was to say years later, “If I had to do it again I’d take a shorter one – you have no idea how long it takes to write ‘Edward G. Robinson’ for a flock of autograph hunters… “


He was a human rights activist. From the late 1930’s, as Nazism began to sweep through Europe, Robinson would actively support the war effort: 

“:..contributing… during World War II, both at the behest of the U.S. government (making speeches to troops and broadcasting in foreign languages to occupied lands), and privately (funding numerous organizations). In addition to putting monies into the hands of such groups as the Anti-Nazi League, Bundles for Britain, Committee to Defend America by Aiding the Allies, and Fight for Freedom, he donated all of his 1942 earnings to war funds, particularly the USO and war bonds. As well as covering dozens of USO-related expenses that year, he also made donations to China War Relief, War Service Inc., Hollywood Canteen, Medical Aid to Russia, and the American Flying Service Foundation.” ~ CineCollage.net 

His history of anti-communist support would come back to haunt him during the dark times of “McCarthyism” that would nearly destroy his career.


Edward G. Robinson was an established Broadway actor and loved the theatre. Several attempts were made from Hollywood studios to lure him to California, and it was finally a contract offer from Jack Warner that would lead him and his wife to Los Angeles; A fortuitous move. The second film he made under contract, 1931’s Little Caesar, would catapult him into stardom.


Along with his massive success in film  Edward G. Robinson had a hit radio show called Big Town. He starred in it from 1937 to 1942 alongside Claire Trevor who he would be reunited with in 1948’s, Key Largo.


Besides acting, art was a passion of his. Over the course of his life he would amass two  impressive collections; One which he would lose in a divorce settlement, the second he would rebuild alongside his second wife, Jane (Adler) Robinson.

If you love Edward G. Robinson and Turner Classic Movies,share this article with a friend.  Tune in daily to Popcorn Talk Network for the best in movie articles, podcasts and video discussion and our sister network AfterbuzzTV for articles, aftershows, and all the latest news on the world of entertainment.

About The Author:

Tami Goveia is a producer, writer and entertainment host for AfterbuzzTV. Classic film and television are her passion, napping is her indulgence and saving all rescues is her mission.

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