Rare Photo Surfaces of Gene Hackman After His Retirement From Acting

by Clayton Edwards

Gene Hackman is a Hollywood legend. His career lasted nearly five decades and included some of the most memorable movies to grace the silver screen. From Superman to The French Connection and beyond, he never turned in less than stellar performances. Then, he walked away from acting in 2004. He was 74 at the time and had put in more than enough work.

Since his retirement, Gene Hackman hasn’t been in the public eye too often. He keeps to himself while he works on his new career as a novelist. However, a rare photo of the legendary actor surfaced on Twitter yesterday. Check out the photo below.

Writer and film historian, James Neibaur posted the photo on his feed yesterday. In the caption, he said that Gene Hackman had the photo taken to show that he was still alive and well at the ripe old age of 91. He added that Hackman lives in New Mexico and keeps himself busy with hobbies, friends, and a daily bike ride.

However, another Twitter user replied to the tweet to say that the caption wasn’t exactly accurate. If you look more closely at the photo you can tell that it is cropped out of a larger photo. @SirDidymus posted the whole photo. Apparently, Gene Hackman posed for the picture after signing several items for OfficialPix, a company that sells authentic autographs. Furthermore, he added that the photo was two years old. You can see the full photo, as well as a screenshot of the Facebook post in which it was originally shared here.

Gene Hackman’s Retirement

Gene Hackman’s last role was that of former US President Monroe Cole in the 2004 comedy Welcome to Mooseport. It wasn’t the best film he was ever in. However, he was able to elevate the film above what it would have been without him. After that movie, he quietly slipped away from Hollywood to enjoy the rest of his days at home with his wife.

Gene Hackman told Empire that his reason for retirement was a practical one.  “The doctor advised me that my heart wasn’t in the kind of shape that I should be putting it under any stress,” he told the publication in a 2009 interview.

Hackman went on to talk about what he did to fill all of his free time. At the time, he and his wife enjoyed watching DVDs at home. About this, the two-time Oscar winner said, “We like simple stories that some of the little low-budget films manage to produce.” For the Hackmans, Friday night was always comedy night. Gene revealed that he and his wife were both big fans of the standup comedy of Eddie Izzard.

Hackman also enjoys fishing and painting. However, he filled a good portion of his time by writing novels with his neighbor and friend Daniel Lenihan. Together, they penned a series of historical adventure novels. At the time of the interview, they had just finished the third of their series. Escape from Andersonville: A Novel of the Civil War was set to hit shelves just days after the interview was originally published.