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Penelope Wilton

Penelope Wilton
Penelope Wilton

 

Penelope Wilton was born on June 3, 1946 in Scarborough, North Yorkshire, England as Penelope Alice Wilton. She is an actress, known for Match Point (2005), The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2011) and Shaun of the Dead (2004). She was previously married to Ian Holm and Daniel Massey.    Penelope Wilton enjoyed enormous success in the TV series “Downton Abbey”,    She was made a Dame in the New Yer’s Honours List 2016.

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Bruno Langley

Bruno Langley
Bruno Langley

 

Wikipedia” entry:

Bruno Langley (born 21 March 1983) is a British actor best known for playing Adam Mitchell in the 2005 series of Doctor Who and Todd Grimshaw in Coronation Street.

Langley was born to Australian parents in Somerset, but grew up in Buxton, Derbyshire.[ He attended Harpur Hill Primary School and Buxton Community School. He trained at the North Cheshire Theatre School[ in Heaton Moor. Along with his sisters he was a member of a number of junior string orchestras in which he played the cello.

From 2001 to 2004, Langley played the character of Todd Grimshaw in the ITV soap opera Coronation Street. As the first openly gay character on the show, Langley developed a large gay following.   He also appeared in Coronation Street on 4 August 2000 as Danny, then boyfriend of Candice.

Since leaving Coronation Street, he has played roles such as the part of Adam Mitchell in the 2005 series of Doctor Who with Christopher Eccleston and Billie Piper, appearing in two episodes, “Dalek” and “The Long Game“, and provided an audio commentary for the DVD of these episodes.[5] He also filmed a small role in the feature film The League of Gentlemen’s Apocalypse,[6] released in June 2005, as well an episode of Dalziel and Pascoe[7] and the little-seen film Halal Harry in 2006, and read Horace for BBC Radio 7.

He returned to Coronation Street for a twelve episode guest stint in 2007]

In April 2011 Langley returned to Coronation Street for a one episode appearance.[

In June 2013 it was announced that Langley was returning to Coronation Street as a regular character.Todd Grimshaw returned in the episodes screened on Monday, 4 November.

In the summer of 2005, Langley made his stage debut in an acclaimed run of Romeo and Juliet opposite fellow ex-soap actress Scarlett Alice Johnson at Stafford Castle. Taking on the role of Romeo, The British Theatre Guide described Langley as, ‘immediately comfortable with the verse, finding no difficulty in being the lovesick youngster before he’s gripped with passion for Juliet. Later he convincingly shows a tantrum-like immaturity at his banishment.’

On 30 October 2005, he appeared on stage at the Old Vic in London in the one-night-only play Night Sky with Christopher Eccleston, Navin Chowdhry, David Warner, Saffron Burrows and David Baddiel.

In the spring of 2006, Langley appeared in Life Imitates Art at the Camden People’s Theatre, Camden.[   Also in 2006 he was seen in a production of A Taste of Honey, taking on the role of repressed gay art student, Geoffrey. In his role as Geoffrey, Langley was described as, ‘quietly impressive, poignantly conveying Geoffrey’s unending loyalty with ease.’[14] The production toured the UK extensively and played a short run at the Richmond Theatre.

Beginning in May 2008, he appeared in the premiere stage run of the new musical Sleeping Beauty starring opposite fellow Coronation Street alumna Lucy Evans at the Gaiety Theatre in Dublin.

Langley also appeared in the stage show Flashdance the Musical.[16] with Victoria Hamilton-Barritt, Bernie Nolan and Noel Sullivan. Langley received positive reviews for his role as Jimmy Kaminsky, with What’s On Stage stating, ‘Bruno Langley also fares well as Jimmy, particularly when he has the chance to showcase his fine voice in the second act.’ [17] and Lindsay Corr stating in the Edinburgh Guide that, ‘Bruno Langley as Jimmy shows acting doesn’t have to take a back seat in musical theatre, as he twitches about the stage in his grey hoodie and delivers his number, ‘You Can’t Keep Me Down’, with understated aplomb.’

In 2010-11 he joined the tour of Calendar Girls,[19] in the role of the young photographer, Lawrence. In reviewing the Liverpool Empire Theatre production of the show, Liverpool Sound and Vision said Langley, ‘gave outstanding moments of beautiful comic timing as young photographer Lawrence that it’s no wonder he was asked back to reprise his role from last year.’

In November 2012 he began playing Giles Ralston in the 60th anniversary tour of The Mousetrap by Agatha Christie.[21]

Langley played the cello until the age of 16 when he decided to pursue a career as an actor. In addition, he plays the piano. In 2010 he formed a band, Bruno Langley and the Wonderland Band. In a 2011 interview with Dianne Bourne of the Manchester Evening News, he stated, “I’ve been acting on and off ever since the age of 17, but always in between jobs I’d sit at the piano and write songs, and sing different songs. A year and a half ago I got a band together, we had a few rehearsals, I had fun doing it and it’s gone from there really.” The band performs songs from the 1950s as well as taking modern tracks and arranging them into jazz, blues and swing styles. Langley has stated he does the arrangements himself.

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Connor McIntyre

Connor McIntyre
Connor McIntyre

Connor McIntyre was born in Toxteth, Liverpool, Merseyside, England. He is an actor, known for Coronation Street (1960), Pu-239 (2006) and Visiting Hour (2014).

 

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Malcolm Hebden

Thelma Barlow & Malcolm Hebden
Thelma Barlow & Malcolm Hebden
Malcolm Hebden
Malcolm Hebden
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Phillipa Bevans

 

 

Phillipa Bevans
Phillipa Bevans

Philippa Bevans was born on February 10, 1913 in London, England. She was an actress, known for The World of Henry Orient (1964), The Notorious Landlady (1962) and The Group (1966). She died on May 10, 1968 in New York City, New York, USA.

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Hilary Mason

Hilary Mason
Hilary Mason

 

“Independent” obituary from 2006:

Hilary Lavender Mason, actress: born Birmingham 4 September 1917; married Roger Ostime; died Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire 5 September 2006.

Although a prolific television character actress for almost half a century, Hilary Mason will be best remembered on screen as the blind, psychic Heather in the macabre supernatural thriller “Don’t Look Now”. The 1973 film starred Julie Christie and Donald Sutherland as John and Laura Baxter, a grieving couple holidaying in a wintry Venice after the death of their daughter, Christine, who was drowned in the garden pond while wearing a shiny, red mackintosh. When Laura meets the two spinster sisters in a restaurant toilet, she is shocked to be told that Heather has seen her daughter. “I’ve seen her and she wants you to know that she’s happy,” says the old woman: I’ve seen your little girl, sitting between you and your husband, and she was laughing. Yes, oh, yes, she’s with you, my dear, and she’s laughing. She’s wearing a shiny little mac. She’s laughing, she’s laughing – she’s happy as can be.   Later, Laura attends a seance with the sisters and – when Heather gets what she claims to be a message from Christine – is disturbed to be told that her husband, John (Sutherland), is in danger. A sceptical John fails to heed the warning and in the final scenes of the film is murdered by a female dwarf in a red, hooded coat. Throughout this eerie film, based on a Daphne du Maurier short story, the director, Nicolas Roeg, leaves us unsure whether Mason’s chilling character really is a psychic or a con artist, particularly in a scene showing the sisters laughing after convincing Laura that they have contacted her daughter.

Born in Birmingham in 1917, Mason won a scholarship to the London School of Dramatic Art before gaining repertory theatre experience in Preston, Southport, York and Guildford. During the Second World War she performed with the troops entertainment organisation Ensa.   Mason made her television début as Mrs Drummond in the drama series Thunder in the West (1957), and played Mrs Yapp in the Midlands-based local council serial Swizzlewick (1964) and Mrs Timothy in the soccer soap United! (1965-67), as well as taking two roles in Coronation Street. Following a bit-part as Mrs Ainsworth (1965), she was Derek Wilton’s mother (1976), who disapproved of her son’s relationship with the dithering Mavis Riley and insisted it must end – to no avail.   Adept at character roles, Mason took eight different parts in Z Cars (1962-71) and another three in Dixon of Dock Green (1965, 1966, 1967), before playing Lady Boleyn in the acclaimed, six-part drama The Six Wives of Henry VIII (starring Keith Michell in the title role, 1970), Mrs Nickleby in Nicholas Nickleby (1977), Mrs Gummidge in David Copperfield (1986) and Mrs Fagge in Great Expectations (1989).

In comedy, she acted Mrs Booth, exasperated mother to the chalk-and-cheese twin brothers, in My Brother’s Keeper (1975-76) and Gladys (1990-94) in Maid Marian and Her Merry Men, the children’s series written by Tony Robinson – with Mason’s real-life husband, the actor Roger Ostime, taking the role of Gladys’s father in one episode. She also played Michael Palin’s mother in the Ripping Yarns episode “The Curse of the Claw” (1977).   After her part in “Don’t Look Now”, Mason was cast in the horror films I Don’t Want To Be Born (acting Mrs Hyde, alongside Joan Collins as a stripper who gives birth to a “possessed” baby, 1975), Dolls (1987), Afraid of the Dark (1991) and Haunted (1995).

Anthony Hayward

 

The above “Independent” obituary can also be accessed online here.

 

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Susan Beaumont

Susan Beaumont
Susan Beaumont

 

Susan Beaumont was born on February 26, 1936 in Balham, London, England as Susan Anna Black. She is an actress, known for Carry on Nurse (1959), The Man Who Liked Funerals (1959) and On the Run (1958).

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Joan Benham

Joan Benham
Joan Ben

Joan Benham was born in 1918 in London.   She is best known for her role as Lady Prudence Fairfax in ITV’s long running classic TV series “Upstairs, Downstairs”.   Movie roles include “The Man Who Loved Redheads” and “The V.I.P.’s ” in 1963.   She died in 1981.

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Bernard Bresslaw

 

 

“Independent” obituary by Dick Vosburgh from 1993:

I CLEARLY remember the day I met Bernard Bresslaw. So, I’ll bet, can anyone who met him.

It was 1951. He was leaning his 6ft 7in frame against the wall of the Rada canteen as I walked in. One of us greeted the other and we started talking. Realising I was an American, he began pumping me, gently but thoroughly, about transatlantic pronunciation, with particular reference to the Deep South. This was typical; I don’t think Bernie wasted a minute at Rada, and it paid off when he won the academy’s Emile Littler Award as Most Promising Actor.

He was born in Stepney, his father an impecunious tailor’s cutter. Bernie became an actor thanks to the efforts of his English teacher. (In typically stage-struck fashion, he often likened her to ‘Miss Moffatt’, the dedicated schoolmistress in the Emlyn Williams play The Corn is Green.) Impressed by the young giant’s erudition and acting potential, she encouraged him to try for a Rada scholarship. That’s how he came to be there.   After graduation, Bresslaw gained practical experience by touring hospitals, army camps and prisons as Lachie, the arrogant, doomed Scot in John Patrick’s The Hasty Heart. In 1953 he made his West End stage debut at the Duchess Theatre, playing Roary MacRoary, an Irish wrestler, in The MacRoary Whirl by Gerald McLarnon. It was advertised as a farcical comedy, but audiences and critics detected precious few laughs and its whirl was short.   Far more successful was Maxwell Anderson’s Broadway play The Bad Seed (1955) at the Aldwych Theatre. In this chilling study of an eight-year- old murderess, Bresslaw played ‘Leroy’, a prying janitor who wound up as another of the moppet’s victims. He gave an effectively oily performance and his American accent was, unsurprisingly, faultless.

He had begun making films in 1954, starting with the role of a gullible castle guard in Men of Sherwood Forest, a Hammer second feature. In 1957 Norman Wisdom starred in Up in the World, the tale of a lovable window cleaner who is framed for a crime and sentenced to 25 years. Bresslaw played his lugubrious cellmate, and when the writer and ace talent-spotter Sid Colin saw the film he immediately decided to write the young actor a key role in Granada Television’s new sitcom The Army Game. The series was an enormous success and Bresslaw’s ‘Private ‘Popeye’ Popplewell’ character made him an instant star. The feature film version that quickly followed took its title from his catchphrase I Only Arsked], his records ‘The Army Game Theme’ and ‘Mad Passionate Love’ remained high in the charts for many weeks, and he duly followed in the footsteps of Max Bygraves, Beryl Reid, Harry Secombe, Benny Hill and Tony Hancock by joining the cast of Educating Archie on radio.   In 1958 Bresslaw starred, along with Bruce Forsyth and Charlie Drake, in Sleeping Beauty at the London Palladium. Because of his Army Game popularity, he played ‘Popeye’, a private in the Tyrolean Army. He always said Sleeping Beauty was his all- time favourite booking; also in the show was a strikingly statuesque dancer who, in 1959, became Mrs Bresslaw. The kind of couple guaranteed to give divorce lawyers ulcers, Bernie and Liz produced three splendid sons, Jonathan, Mark and James.   But soon the media incorrectly decided the Popplewell character represented the limit of Bernie’s ability and the offers ceased. ‘OK,’ he reasoned, ‘if film and television jobs are playing hard to get, there’s always my first love, the Theatre.’ So he started going where the work was, tackling Sheridan, Marlowe, Ionesco, Ustinov, Galsworthy, Pinero, Chekhov, Shaw, Moliere, Cooney – you name it. There was Shakespeare too: he did Twelfth Night for the British Council, playing a creditable Sir Toby Belch. (‘It must be the first time,’ he said to me, ‘that Sir Toby’s ever been played by Sir Andrew Aguecheek]’) He played Falstaff in two national tours with the Oxford Playhouse company, and began a long association with the Open Air Theatre. (This summer he was to have appeared in Regent’s Park as Grumio in The Taming of the Shrew and as Merlin in Rodgers and Hart’s A Connecticut Yankee. He collapsed in his dressing room before a performance of The Shrew.)

In 1965 Bresslaw made Carry on Cowboy. The first of his 14 Carry Ons, it cast him as the Indian brave ‘Little Heap’, towering over his father, ‘Chief Big Heap’ (Charles Hawtrey). The juiciest Bresslaw characters from these films are ‘Sockett’, the sinister butler in Carry On Screaming (1966) and the gutteral tribal leader ‘Bungdit Din’ in Carry On Up the Khyber or The British Position in India (1968).   In 1969 – between Carry On Camping and Carry On Up the Jungle – he took over from Laurence Olivier as AB Rayam, the wily lawyer in the National Theatre production of Somerset Maugham’s Home and Beauty. He also worked for the English Stage Company, the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Young Vic and the Chichester Festival Theatre, for whom he played the homicidal Jonathan Brewster in Arsenic and Old Lace.  Bresslaw was a versatile pantomime performer, playing Dame in Jack and the Beanstalk, Ugly Sister in Cinderella and Bernard the Bad in Babes in the Wood. In 1982 he appeared as Abanazar in Aladdin at Richmond. (Ironically, his Widow Twankey was Les Dawson, who died the day before him, also aged 59.)

In 1983 the director Peter Yates (another of Bresslaw’s fellow students at Rada) gave him his most impressive film role. In the dollars 27m Krull he played ‘Rell’, the terrifying Cyclops. In The Science Fiction Film Source Book, David Wingrove praises the movie’s dazzling visuals, particularly ‘the Beast itself, Bernard Bresslaw brilliantly disguised’.   Last summer he appeared at a revue in Blackpool, for which Barry Cryer and I wrote material. Although he had been unwell for some time, our star did us proud, deftly playing an actor laddie, a lecherous landlady, a bibulous heckler, a frowsy poet and a George-Formbyesque Frankenstein Monster. After the show one night, a man came up to us in a restaurant and said, ‘Mr Bresslaw, I must tell you, I loved you in The Ladykillers.’ Bernie smiled and accepted the compliment with thanks. Of course, he didn’t play ‘One Round’, the over-the-hill prize fighter in that 1955 film. Danny Green played the part; Bernie was only 21 at the time. But he certainly wasn’t going to embarrass the man by correcting him. That would have been out of character

The above “Independent” obituary can also be accessed online here.

 

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John Cronin

John Cronin
John Cronin

John Cronin was born in 1967 in Dublin.   He was part of the cast of “The Commitments” in 1989.