Hollywood legend Kirk Douglas, who died in February at the age of 103, left the majority of his fortune to charity, it has emerged.

The star gifted $50m to be distributed through the Douglas Foundation, whose stated aim is to “help those who cannot otherwise help themselves”.

Among the foundation’s beneficiaries are St Lawrence University, where it funds a scholarship for minority and underprivileged students; the Kirk Douglas Theatre and the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, The Daily Mirror reports.

It seems the star has not, however, left anything to his son Michael Douglas, whose own net worth is estimated at around $300m.

Considered the last of the greats of Hollywood’s Golden Age, Kirk Douglas enjoyed a movie career that spanned seven decades and included such classics as Spartacus, Paths of Glory and Lust for Life.

The actor was born Issur Danielovitch on 9 December 1916 in Amsterdam, New York, the only son among seven siblings born to parents who came to the USA from what was then the Russian Empire and is now Belarus.

Writing in his 1988 autobiography, The Ragman’s Son, Douglas remembered how tough his childhood had been: “My father, who had been a horse trader in Russia, got himself a horse and a small wagon, and became a ragman, buying old rags, pieces of metal, and junk for pennies, nickels, and dimes,” he wrote. “Even on Eagle Street, in the poorest section of town, where all the families were struggling, the ragman was on the lowest rung on the ladder. And I was the ragman’s son.”