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The Oldest Living Celebrities in 2023 — Best Life – Best Life


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From 97-year-old Dick Van Dyke to 100-year-old Norman Lear.
There are some celebrities who seem like they’ve been around forever—and in some cases, that’s because their lives have actually spanned an entire century. But you still may be surprised to learn their actual ages. Dick Van Dyke performed one of his best known film roles—Bert in Mary Poppins—nearly 60 years ago. But, did you realize that he’s now 97 years old? Eva Marie Saint won an Academy Award all the way back in 1955 for her role in On the Waterfront. This year, she’ll turn 99. Read on to learn more about those two stars and six more of the oldest celebrities still alive in 2023.
READ THIS NEXT: This Is Why You Never Hear From Jack Nicholson Anymore.
Birthday: May 8, 1926
First on our list is David Attenborough. The English natural historian and TV producer will turn 97 years old this year. Also a TV host, he’s famous for narrating the BBC series Planet Earth. Most recently, Attenborough published his book A Life on Our Planet: My Witness Statement and a Vision for the Future and released the accompanying documentary David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet in 2020.
In a 2020 interview with 60 Minutes, Attenborough was asked what in life he would do over again, and he gave a poetic answer. “First time seeing the coral reef, watching a humming bird, sitting alongside a gorilla, holding my first born baby,” he said. In the same interview, he was asked if he was scared of death. “No, not of the process,” he responded. “I’d just like it to be a quick process, thank you very much.”
Birthday: Dec. 13, 1925
Dick Van Dyke is now 97 years old, and he’s still more active than many people half his age. The dancer and actor is an icon for movies including Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Mary Poppins, and for his TV series, The Dick Van Dyke Show. In 2018, he made a cameo in the movie Mary Poppins Returns and even performed a dance number on a desk. Also in 2018, he was in Buttons: A Christmas Film, and in 2020 he was in two episodes of the show Kidding.
In an interview with CBS This Morning in 2021, Van Dyke showed off his workout routine and his plans to make it to his centennial birthday. “I’m looking forward to 100,” he said. “George Burns made it, and I’m gonna do it too.”
Birthday: Oct. 1, 1924
At 98, former president Jimmy Carter is the oldest living ex-president and the longest-living one, too. On Feb. 18, it was announced that the 39th president “decided to spend his remaining time at home with his family and receive hospice care instead of additional medical intervention” following a “series of short hospital stays.”
Carter has opened up about staying busy into his later years, including continuing to build homes with Habitat for Humanity. He also released a book titled Faith in 2018.
“I was an avid runner until I was 80 and my knees gave out. I have two new knees, and those have worked well. Now I swim regularly at home and when I travel. I’m active around the house, and with painting and woodworking,” he told The Washington Post (via Insider) in 2013.
Birthday: July 4, 1924
Eva Marie Saint starred in classic films including North by Northwest and On the Waterfront. For her role in the latter, opposite Marlon Brando, she won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. Saint’s most recent live-action role was in 2014’s Winter’s Tale and the same year, she lent her voice to the animated series The Legend of Korra. In 2021, she did more voicework on the podcast series The Pack Podcast.
Saint reflected on her acting career in a 2014 interview with NPR. “The longer you live, I believe, you learn so much about life that you have more to give,” she said. “It’s interesting, people say how, when you watch a film, how do you feel about it? What do you remember? And do you like watching the film? Well, after it’s been several years, many years, it’s almost another person up on the screen.”
Birthday: Dec. 12, 1923
Bob Barker was a TV staple as the host of The Price Is Right, which he emceed from 1972 to 2007. Before that, he spent nearly 20 years hosting another game show, Truth or Consequences. He’s also known for his advocacy for animals.
In 2021, Barker looked back on his time on the daytime game show in honor of its 50th anniversary.
“I’m often asked what I loved most about my years with Price, and the first thing that pops to mind is … the money, of course!” Barker joked to People. “All kidding aside, there was much to love. I had the pleasure of working with a dedicated and talented cast and crew for 35 great years. Particularly close to my heart was the ability our vast popularity gave me to remind our entire audience daily about the importance of spaying and neutering your pets.”
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Birthday: Oct. 5, 1923
British actor Glynis Johns had a career that spanned seven decades and saw her acting in films including Mary PoppinsWhile You Were Sleeping, and The Sundowners, for which she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. She also did theater, winning a Tony Award in 1973 for her performance in A Little Night Music. Her last role was in the 1999 comedy Superstar.
In a 1991 interview with the Los Angeles Times when she was 67, Johns talked about returning to A Little Night Music in a different role.
“There’s no point in acting at my age unless I’m going to feel that I’m stretching—or unless (I were) getting a million bucks a day,” she said. “In classical theater in Europe, everybody plays all kinds of parts. Juliets go on to play the Nurses; they don’t want to play Juliet again. I think we’ve got to remember to grab onto our perks, whatever is the good thing about each age. Each stage of life should be a progression.”
Birthday: July 27, 1922
Legendary TV producer and writer Norman Lear joined the 100 club in 2022. He’s celebrated for creating and working on classic shows including All in the FamilyThe JeffersonsGood Times, and One Day at a Time. And he’s still working as a producer today. Recent projects include the 2021 documentary Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go for It and the Netflix reboot of One Day at a Time, which ended in 2020.
Lear shared some wise words in a video posted on Twitter for his 100th birthday.
“Every person who is seeing me now—some are seeing me within months of my saying this, some are likely to see this years after I have said this. But whenever all of you are seeing it, that will be the moment you’re seeing it, as this is the moment I’m saying it,” Lear says in the video. He continues, “And what that means to me is living in the moment. The moment between past and present or present and past. The moment between after and next. The hammock in the middle of after and next. The moment. Treasure it. Use it. With love.”
Birthday: April 6, 1919
Finally, at age 103, we have Caren Marsh-Doll. Marsh-Doll worked as an actor during the Golden Age of Hollywood but retired from the screen in the 1950s and became a dance teacher. Marsh-Doll is one of the few surviving people who worked on The Wizard of Oz—she was a stand-in for Judy Garland on that film and in Ziegfeld Girl. She also had an uncredited role in Gone with the Wind. In her later years, Marsh-Doll has attended festivals celebrating The Wizard of Oz.
In another unbelievable story from her life, Marsh-Doll was one of 13 survivors of a 1949 passenger plane crash. She shared what she gained from the situation speaking to Syracuse.com in 2011. “I’ll tell you one thing I learned,” she said. “I don’t let myself get stressed out about anything. I don’t worry about anything. Whatever comes, I just try to go with the flow.”
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