Steve McQueen

Rumpled good looks and effortless charisma made Steve McQueen Hollywood’s “King of Cool”. This former US Marine became the highest-paid actor in the world while simultaneously leading a busy off-screen life. An avid race car driver and motorcycle enthusiast, he nearly raced professionally but settled for performing his own big-screen stunts.

Neither the film industry nor his fans could resist this brash iconoclast. McQueen's string of hit movies from the 1960s and ‘70s continue to define the style of that era.


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Steve McQueen


McQueen was dyslexic and partially deaf.

He often performed his own stunt-driving in films like The Great Escape, where he can be seen both as himself and, with clever editing, as his Nazi pursuers.

He was inducted into the Motorcycle Hall of Fame.

He turned down leading roles in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, and Dirty Harry, among others.

McQueen was invited to Sharon Tate’s home on the night of the Charles Manson murders, but didn’t attend.


  • Racing is life. Anything before or after is just waiting.
  • Stardom equals financial success and financial success equals security.
  • There’s something about my shaggy-dog eyes that makes people think I’m good.
  • I’m not sure whether I’m an actor who races or a racer who acts.
  • I don’t believe in that phony hero stuff.
  • In my own mind, I’m not sure that acting is something for a grown man to be doing.