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Facts about actor Charlton Heston

world Updated: Apr 06, 2008 15:15 IST
Reuters
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* He was born John Charlton Carter but took his stepfather's last name for his stage name.

* In The Ten Commandments Heston not only played Moses, he supplied the voice of God. His son, Fraser, 3 months old at the time, played the baby Moses floating down the Nile in a basket.

* Heston was active in the civil rights movement in the 1960s and before becoming a conservative Republican he campaigned on behalf of Democrats Adlai Stevenson and John F Kennedy.

* Heston served as president of the National Rifle Association from 1998 to 2003. He once summed up his belief in the second amendment to the US Constitution, which includes the right to bear arms, by calling it "America's first freedom, the one that protects the others."

He often appeared at conventions holding an antique flintlock rifle above his head and telling gun-control advocates they would not get his gun unless they could pry it "from my cold, dead hands."

* In August 2002 Heston released a video statement saying he had "symptoms consistent with Alzheimer's disease."

"If you see a little less spring to my step, if your name fails to leap to my lips, you'll know why," he said.

He still finished his term as NRA president after the diagnosis.

(Writing by Bill Trott)