Famous People Born In 1931

Discover the most famous people born in 1931. The list includes people like A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, James Dean, James Earl Jones, Rupert Murdoch, Mikhail Gorbachev and many more. This list of celebrities is loosely sorted by popularity. People featured on this list, include political leaders, philosophers, poets and playwrights born in 1931. This list includes people from United States, United Kingdom, India & Canada and many more countries.
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 1 
James Dean
(American Actor Who is Remembered as a Cultural Icon of Teenage Disillusionment and Social Estrangement)
James Dean
58
Listed In: Actors
Birthdate: 8th February
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Marion, Indiana, United States
Died: September 30, 1955

Best remembered for his role in the film, Rebel Without a Cause, actor James Dean was a cultural icon of teenage disillusionment. Despite having a difficult childhood, he was an exceptional student. He began acting as a young man and was quite successful. Sadly, he was killed in a car crash at the young age of 24.

 2 
James Earl Jones
(One of the Greatest Actors in American History)
James Earl Jones
55
Listed In: Actors
Birthdate: 17th January
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Arkabutla, Mississippi, United States

A veteran actor with a career spanning more than seven decades, James Earl Jones has been described as "one of America's most distinguished and versatile" actors. He initially aspired to be a doctor but fate had other plans for him. He began his career as a stage actor and soon joined films as well.

 3 
William Shatner
(Famous for His Portrayal of Captain James T. Kirk in the 'Star Trek' Franchise)
William Shatner
58
Listed In: Actors
Birthdate: 22nd March
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Montreal, Canada

Canadian actor, William Shatner, is best known for his roles in the television series Boston Legal, a legal drama for which he won two Emmy Awards and Star Trek, a science fiction adventure. He has also worked in many other sitcoms and films and has authored a number of science fiction novels. He is a singer and a spoken-word artist too.

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 4 
Sam Cooke
(Singer-songwriter)
Sam Cooke
53
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: 22nd January
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Clarksdale, Mississippi, United States
Died: December 11, 1964
The King of Soul Sam Cooke is best remembered for his hits A Change is Gonna Come, You Send Me, and Wonderful World. He began singing gospel as a child and later joined The Soul Stirrers. He was shot and killed by a motel manager in Los Angeles. 
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 5 
Leonard Nimoy
(Known for Playing 'Spock' in The 'Star Trek' Franchise)
Leonard Nimoy
21
Birthdate: 26th March
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Died: February 27, 2015
Three-time Emmy nominee Leonard Nimoy is best known for playing the iconic character Spock in the Star Trek franchise, for almost 50 years. Spock became a cult, and even Nimoy’s autobiographies were named after the character. He also appeared in Zombies of the Stratosphere and hosted a documentary series.
 6 
Desmond Tutu
(First Black African Archbishop of Cape Town & Nobel Peace Prize Winner)
Desmond Tutu
69
Birthdate: 7th October
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Klerksdorp, South Africa
Died: December 26, 2021
Desmond Tutu is known for his anti-Apartheid activism in South Africa. The first black Archbishop of Cape Town, he has also been the Bishop of Johannesburg. His efforts to eradicate AIDS, poverty, anti-LGBT sentiments, and human rights violations earned him the Nobel Peace Prize and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
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 7 
Rita Moreno
(Puerto Rican Actress and Singer Best Known for Her Role as 'Anita' in 'West Side Story')
Rita Moreno
31
Listed In: Actresses
Birthdate: 11th December
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Humacao, Puerto Rico

Rita Moreno is an American actress, singer, and dancer. Renowned for her work in film, television, and theater in a career spanning more than seven decades, Rita is among a few elite performers to have received all four major American entertainment awards: Tony, Grammy, Emmy, and an Oscar. Among Rita Moreno’s numerous accolades is the prestigious Presidential Medal of Freedom.

 8 
Mikhail Gorbachev
(Former General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union)
Mikhail Gorbachev
41
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: 2nd March
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Privol'noe, Russia
Died: August 30, 2022

Born into a poor peasant family, Mikhail Gorbachev went on to become one of the most influential figures of the Soviet Union. He served in various positions, most notably as the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. He is regarded as one of the most prominent personalities of the 20th century.

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 9 
Angie Dickinson
(Actress role in Gun the Man Down (1956) with James Arness and the Western film Rio Bravo (1959))
Angie Dickinson
21
Listed In: Actresses
Birthdate: 30th September
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Kulm, North Dakota, United States
 10 
Mickey Mantle
(One of the Greatest Switch Hitters in Baseball History)
Mickey Mantle
14
Listed In: Baseball Players
Birthdate: 20th October
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Spavinaw, Oklahoma, United States
Died: August 13, 1995

Professional baseball player Mickey Mantle played his entire Major League Baseball (MLB) career with the New York Yankees. He played as a center fielder, right fielder, and first baseman. Regarded by many as the greatest switch hitter in baseball history, he won the Triple Crown in 1956 and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974. 

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 11 
Anne Bancroft
(Actress)
Anne Bancroft
15
Listed In: Actresses
Birthdate: 17th September
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: June 6, 2005

Anne Bancroft was an American actress known for her versatility. Having won an Oscar, two Primetime Emmy Awards, and two Tony Awards, she is one of the 24 performers to have achieved the Triple Crown of Acting. In 2010, her husband Mel Brooks credited her for being an inspiration behind the development of his musicals Young Frankenstein and The Producers.

 12 
Rip Torn
(Actor)
Rip Torn
10
Listed In: Actors
Birthdate: 6th February
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Temple, Texas, United States
Died: July 9, 2019
Rip Torn is best remembered for his Emmy-winning role of Arthur in The Larry Sanders Show and his Academy Award-nominated role of Marsh Turner in Cross Creek. Fans also loved him as Zed in the Men in Black franchise. He lent his voice to many animated films and video games.
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 13 
Robert Duvall
(One of the Greatest American Actors of All Time)
Robert Duvall
24
Birthdate: 5th January
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: San Diego, California, United States

As an actor and filmmaker, Robert Duvall has had a remarkable career spanning more than 60 years. In recognition of his service to performing arts, President George W. Bush honored him with the National Medal of Arts at the White House in 2005. Apart from being an actor, he is also a skilled Argentine Tango dancer.

 14 
Barbara Eden
(Actress, Singer and Producer Known for Her Role as ‘Jeannie’ in the TV Series ‘I Dream of Jeannie’)
Barbara Eden
32
Listed In: Actresses
Birthdate: 23rd August
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Tucson, Arizona, United States

Barbara Eden is an American actress known for playing Jeannie in the TV series I Dream of Jeannie. Over the years, Barbara Eden has made significant contributions to television for which she was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She was also honored with a Doctor of Laws degree by the University of West Los Angeles.

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 15 
Regis Philbin
(Actor)
Regis Philbin
21
Birthdate: 25th August
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States
 16 
A.P.J. Abdul Kalam
(Aerospace Scientist & 11th President of India)
A.P.J. Abdul Kalam
142
Listed In: Presidents
Birthdate: 15th October
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu, India
Died: July 27, 2015
A. P. J. Abdul Kalam, India’s 11th president, had earlier been an aerospace scientist at DRDO and ISRO. Known as the “People’s President” and the “Missile Man of India,” he was instrumental in India's Pokhran-II nuclear tests. He died of a cardiac arrest while delivering a lecture at IIM Shillong.
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 17 
Willie Mays
(One of the Best All-Around Players in the History of Baseball)
Willie Mays
7
Listed In: Baseball Players
Birthdate: 6th May
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Westfield, Alabama, United States

Willie Mays is considered one of the all-time greats of baseball. His breathtaking catch of Vic Wertz’s fly ball is etched as a great movement in the history of the sport. Associated with New York / San Francisco Giants for about two decades, the former center fielder with record Major League Football putouts, features in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

 18 
Charles Nelson Reilly
(Best Known for His TV Shows “Match Game” and “The Ghost & Mrs. Muir”)
Charles Nelson Reilly
12
Birthdate: 13th January
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: May 25, 2007

Charles Nelson Reilly was an American actor, director, comedian, and drama teacher. He was best known for his work on the television panel game show Match Game where he was a regular panelist between 1973 and 1991. He was also known for voicing popular animated characters like Humpty Dumpty, Mr. Toad, and Dirty Bubble.

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 19 
Larry Hagman
(Actor, Director and Producer Known for His Role as ‘J. R. Ewing’ in the TV Soap Opera ‘Dallas’)
Larry Hagman
3
Birthdate: 21st September
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Fort Worth, Texas, United States
Died: November 23, 2012
Larry Hagman, son of actor Mary Martin, is best remembered as astronaut Tony Nelson from the iconic series I Dream of Jeannie and as oil baron J.R. Ewing from the long-running soap Dallas. He had also delivered several guest performances and dabbled in direction and production, before dying of leukemia.
 20 
Toni Morrison
(Novelist)
Toni Morrison
46
Listed In: Novelists
Birthdate: 18th February
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Lorain, Ohio
Died: August 5, 2019
Author, editor, and Princeton professor Toni Morrison is best remembered for her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel Beloved, part of a trilogy. Some of her other notable works include The Bluest Eye and Song of Solomon. She received the 1993 Nobel Prize in Literature. She also wrote several children’s books and plays.
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 21 
Jerry Van Dyke
(Actor)
Jerry Van Dyke
5
Birthdate: 27th July
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Danville, Illinois, USA
Died: January 5, 2018
 22 
George Jones
(Country Singer Best Known for His Song ‘He Stopped Loving Her Today')
George Jones
7
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: 12th September
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Saratoga, Texas, United States
Died: April 26, 2013

George Jones was an American singer, songwriter, and musician. Renowned for his distinctive voice and phrasing, George Jones was widely regarded as the greatest living country singer during the last 20 years of his life. Jones is also remembered for staying painstakingly loyal to country music throughout his life. He was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1992.

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 23 
Della Reese
(Known for Her 1959 Hit Single 'Don't You Know?' and Her Role in the TV Series 'Touched by an Angel')
Della Reese
9
Birthdate: 6th July
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Black Bottom, Detroit, United States
Died: November 19, 2017
Jazz and gospel singer and actor Della Reese, who was also an ordained minister, gained fame with tracks such as Don't You Know? and Some of her best-known films were Harlem Nights and A Thin Line Between Love and Hate. She played Tess in the series Touched by an Angel
 24 
Dan Rather
(Journalist and News Anchor of the ‘CBS Evening News’)
Dan Rather
14
Listed In: Journalists
Birthdate: 31st October
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Wharton, Texas, United States
Dan Rather shot to fame when he saved thousands of people during Hurricane Carla through the first radar weather report. Subsequently, he had a 24-year stint on CBS Evening News. He was fired following the Killian documents controversy and then joined AXS TV, hosting shows such as Dan Rather Reports
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 25 
Jack Swigert
(Astronaut)
Jack Swigert
21
Listed In: Astronauts
Birthdate: 30th August
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Denver, Colorado
Died: December 27, 1982

Jack Swigert was an American astronaut who flew to the moon and spent nearly six days in space. He was an engineer who also held a masters degree in business administration. He was involved in the infamous Apollo 15 postal covers incident. He ventured into politics with mixed fortunes.  He was elected to the US Congress but died before being sworn in.

 26 
Ian Holm
(British Actor Best Known for His Role in the Film 'Chariots on Fire')
Ian Holm
8
Listed In: Actors
Birthdate: 12th September
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Goodmayes, Essex, England
Died: June 19, 2020
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 27 
Diana Dors
(English Actress and a 'Sex Symbol' of the Mid 20th Century)
Diana Dors
11
Listed In: Actresses
Birthdate: 23rd October
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Swindon, Wiltshire, England
Died: May 4, 1984

Diana Dors was an English singer and actress who became renowned as one of the most famous sex symbols of her generation in the UK. She achieved stardom, first as a blonde bombshell—who made headlines for organizing lavish parties—and later as a regular chat-show guest. Diana Dors’ life and career inspired a 1999 TV biographical film titled The Blonde Bombshell.      

 28 
Martin Milner
(Best Known for His Roles in the TV Series ‘Route 66’ and ‘Adam-12’)
Martin Milner
6
Listed In: Actors
Birthdate: 28th December
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Detroit, Michigan, United States
Died: September 6, 2015
Martin Milner is best remembered for his roles as Tod Stiles in Route 66 and Officer Pete Malloy in Adam-12. Fans also loved him as Karl Robinson in The Swiss Family Robinson. He was a polio survivor and has begun acting at local children’s theater at the age of 9.
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 29 
Olympia Dukakis
(Best Known for Her Role as ‘Rose Castorini’ in the Film ‘Moonstruck’)
Olympia Dukakis
22
Listed In: Actresses
Birthdate: 20th June
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Lowell, Massachusetts, United States
Died: May 1, 2021
Olympia Dukakis gained recognition for her Obie Award-winning performance in the play Man Equals Man. She was also seen as Rose Castorini in Moonstruck, a role that earned her an Academy Award and a Golden Globe. Fans also loved her in the TV film Lucky Day and the miniseries Sinatra.
 30 
Leslie Caron
(Actress & Dancer Known for Her Films: 'Lili' and 'The L-Shaped Room')
Leslie Caron
6
Listed In: Dancers
Birthdate: 1st July
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Boulogne-sur-Seine, Paris, France
French-American actor Leslie Caron is best known for her BAFTA-winning roles in The L-Shaped Room and Lili. She has also won a Golden Globe and an Emmy. A seasoned actor, she began her career as a ballerina. She has also been a jury member at various international film festivals.
 31 
Mike Nichols
(Director Best Known for His Works 'Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?' and 'The Graduate')
Mike Nichols
8
Birthdate: 6th November
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Berlin, Germany
Died: November 19, 2014

Mike Nichols started as a comedian with the troupe The Compass Players and then performed as part of the Grammy-winning duo Nichols and May. Nichols then delivered Tony-winning directorial stage ventures such as Luv and Death of a Salesman and won the Academy Award for his direction in The Graduate

 32 
Barbara Bain
(Best Known for Her Role as ‘Cinnamon Carter’ in TV Series ‘Mission: Impossible’)
Barbara Bain
3
Listed In: Actresses
Birthdate: 13th September
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States

Barbara Bain is an American actress best known for playing Cinnamon Carter in the popular TV series Mission: Impossible, for which she received a Golden Globe Award nomination and three Primetime Emmy Awards. For her contribution to the American film and TV industry, Barbara Bain was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on April 28, 2016. 

 33 
Marla Gibbs
(Actress)
Marla Gibbs
11
Birthdate: 14th June
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, USA
 34 
David Janssen
(Best Known for His Role as ‘Richard Kimble’ in the TV Series ‘The Fugitive’)
David Janssen
15
Listed In: Actors
Birthdate: 27th March
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Naponee, Nebraska, United States
Died: February 13, 1980
David Janssen is best known for his portrayal of Richard Kimble in the series The Fugitive. He also played titular roles in Richard Diamond, Private Detective; O'Hara, U.S. Treasury; and Harry O. He made it to TV Guide’s list of the 50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time.
 35 
Roger Penrose
(English Mathematician, Mathematical Physicist and Winner of the 2020 Nobel Prize for Physics)
Roger Penrose
3
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: 8th August
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Colchester, England

Roger Penrose’s contribution to the research related to the black hole and general relativity earned him the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2020. The Emeritus Rouse Ball Professor of Mathematics at Oxford, Roger is also a fellow of Wadham College, St John's College of Cambridge, and University College London.

 36 
Boris Yeltsin
(Former President of Russia)
Boris Yeltsin
30
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: 1st February
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Butka
Died: April 23, 2007
Boris Yeltsin served as the first president of Russia, from 1990 to 1999. He contributed to the dissolution of the Soviet Union. His regime was marked by capitalism, monopoly, inflation, and corruption. He introduced a modified constitution that increased the presidential powers. He later abruptly announced his resignation on TV.
 37 
Gavin MacLeod
(Actor)
Gavin MacLeod
3
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: 28th February
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Mount Kisco, New York, United States
 38 
Tom Wolfe
(American author)
Tom Wolfe
8
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: 2nd March
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Richmond, Virginia, United States
Died: March 14, 2018
 39 
Anita Ekberg
(Swedish Actress Best Known for Her Role as ‘Sylvia’ in the Film ‘La Dolce Vita’)
Anita Ekberg
10
Listed In: Actresses
Birthdate: 29th September
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Malmö Municipality, Sweden
Died: January 11, 2015

Swedish actress Anita Ekberg is best known for her role in the comedy-drama film La Dolce Vita. She worked primarily in Italy and later became a citizen of the country. She began modeling as a teenager and eventually entered films as well. Beautiful and voluptuous, she became a popular name within a few years.

 40 
Dominic Chianese
(Best Known for His Role as ‘Corrado "Junior" Soprano’ in the TV Series ‘The Sopranos’)
Dominic Chianese
3
Listed In: Actors
Birthdate: 24th February
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: The Bronx, New York, United States
Dominic Chianese is best known for his Emmy-nominated role of Corrado "Junior" Soprano in The Sopranos. Fans also loved him as Johnny Ola in The Godfather Part II and as Leander Cephas Whitlock in the series Boardwalk Empire. He has also received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
 41 
Daniel Ellsberg
(Activist)
Daniel Ellsberg
4
Birthdate: 7th April
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois

Economist and political activist Daniel Ellsberg has also served as a U.S. military analyst and worked for RAND Corporation. He made headlines after releasing the Pentagon Papers to leading newspapers such as The New York Times. However, the charges of theft and conspiracy levelled against him were later dismissed.

 42 
Hal Linden
(Actor)
Hal Linden
6
Birthdate: 20th March
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
 43 
Dean Smith
(Basketball Coach)
Dean Smith
7
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: 28th February
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Emporia, Kansas, United States
Died: February 7, 2015
 44 
Mitzi Gaynor
(American actress)
Mitzi Gaynor
1
Listed In: Actresses
Birthdate: 4th September
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States
 45 
Philip Baker Hall
(Actor)
Philip Baker Hall
9
Birthdate: 10th September
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Toledo, Ohio, USA
 46 
Alvin Ailey
(Dancer)
Alvin Ailey
24
Listed In: Dancers
Birthdate: 5th January
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Rogers, Texas, United States
Died: December 1, 1989
 47 
Tom Laughlin
(Actor)
Tom Laughlin
6
Birthdate: 10th August
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA
Died: December 12, 2013
 48 
Bill Walsh
(Former American football coach of the San Francisco 49ers in the 1980s who popularized spread-passing in the West Coast Offense)
Bill Walsh
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: 30th November
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States
Died: July 30, 2007
 49 
Carl Brashear
(Sailor)
Carl Brashear
6
Listed In: Sailors
Birthdate: 19th January
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Tonieville, Kentucky, United States
Died: July 25, 2006
 50 
Carroll Baker
(Actress)
Carroll Baker
2
Listed In: Actresses
Birthdate: 28th May
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Johnstown, Pennsylvania, United States