One of the last of his generation of which really only Clint Eastwood is still around and active (Redford is a good 11 years younger), Paul Newman was able to find the rare combination of cool dignity and emotional vulnerability within his characters. His portrayal of the self-destructive pool hustler "Fast" Eddie Felson in The Hustler is one of the most powerful performances in cinematic history.
Of late he had pretty much retired from acting, choosing instead to focus on philanthropist work, race car promoting and his very successful line of food products.
Its a real shame that he and frequent co-star Robert Redford were not able to get that final collaboration they had discussed for several years off the ground.
Below are the posters for several of my favorite Newman starring films. If you haven't seen any, I recommend to watch one or all to get a full sense of the range of his talent.