As the young actor aged, he made the transition to less precocious roles, famously donning prosthetic makeup to play a talking simian in the Planet of the Apes franchise. He also appeared as a regular guest in popular small-screen fare such as "The Twilight Zone," "Fantasy Island" and "The Carol Burnett Show."
In 1960, McDowall earned two major acting awards: an Emmy for an episode of "Sunday Showcase" and a Tony for "The Fighting Cock." Although his performance in the big-budget epic Cleopatra (1963) was widely considered one of his best, a clerical goof on the part of the movie studio likely kept him from earning an Oscar nod. McDowall died from lung cancer Oct. 3, 1998.