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Archive for February, 2011

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Isabel Bigley

Isabel Bigley was born in 1926 in the Bronx, New York.   She originated the part of the Salvation Army member Sarah Brown in the 1951 production of the Broadway hit “Guys and Dolls”.   She retired to rear her family in 1958 and lived for a time in London with her husband and six children.   She died aged 80 in 2006.

Michael Freedland’s obituary in “The Guardian”:

The American singer and actor Isabel Bigley, who has died aged 78, will be remembered by British and US theatregoers for singing People Will Say We’re in Love in Oklahoma! and If I Were a Bell in Guys And Dolls.

Bigley was born in New York, the daughter of a salesman, and was educated at Walton high school in the Bronx before going to the Juilliard School of Music in 1944. Her Broadway debut was in the chorus of Oklahoma! in 1946. She followed the show to Drury Lane, where a brief period in the chorus led to the small part of Armina in 1947. She was so good that by the time the show closed in 1949, she was playing the female lead, Laurey, serenaded in The Surrey with the Fringe on Top.

News of her success got her a recommendation to Feuer and his partner, Ernie Martin, for Guys and Dolls. Bigley went on to be a sensation in the show, winning a Tony award in 1951. This was followed by a Theatre World award for the most promising newcomer. When she sang Sarah’s other hit, If I Were a Bell, critics remarked that that was how her voice sounded – like a bell. That same year, Bigley took part in the first television spectacular in colour. The show, Premiere, starred some of the most important American entertainment figures of the day.

When the Broadway production of Guys and Dolls ended in 1953, Rodgers and Hammerstein cast Bigley in the lead role of Jeannie in Me and Juliet, a show that ran for 358 performances. From then on, she concentrated on television, hosting the US version of the TV cabaret show Café Continental and appearing on the Ed Sullivan Show. She was a regular, too, on the Paul Whiteman, Eddie Fisher and Abbott and Costello shows, and was on the team of the American What’s My Line? She yearned to go back to the stage, but somehow the right part never cropped up at the right time.

In July 1953, Bigley married Lawrence Barnett, an important theatrical agency boss. Together, they endowed scholarships at Ohio State University and funded a biennial public policy symposium. Lawrence survives his wife, as do her four sons and two daughters.

· Isabel Bigley Barnett, actor and singer, born February 23 1928; died September 30 2006

The above article can be accessed online at the Guardian” here.

Isabel Bigley
Isabel Bigley
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Irene Handl

 

Irene Handl was born in 1901 in London.   Her father was Austrian and her mother French.   She made her London stage debut in 1937.   Her films included “On the Night of the Fire” in 1939, “Millions Like Us”, “Brief Encounter”,”Upstairs and Downstairs”, Two-Way Stretch” and “The Rebel”.   She was featured in over 100 movies.   Irene Handel was also a published novelist.   She died in 1987 at the age of 85.

“Times” obituary:

Irene Handl, the comedy actress who made a speciality out of   warm-hearted Cockneys, died yesterday. She was 85.  She was getting on for 40 before she started acting but quickly made   her mark and had a long and fruitful career on the stage, in films and   on television. Small, dumpy and invariably cheerful, she took   naturally to comedy and will be remembered for her portrayals of maids   and charladies and dotty aunts.   She was also a successful novelist – a late starter here as well, her first book not appearing until she was in her sixties.   Irene Handl was born in Maida Vale, London, on December 27, 1901. Thedaughter of a Viennese banker and aFrench mother, she was educated at a variety of schools and travelled widely in her youth. After hermother’s death she stayed at home to look after her father.   When she decided, at an advanced age for such things, to try for a  career on the stage, she trained at the Embassy School under Eileen   Thorndike (sister of Dame Sybil). She had an immediate success playing   the maid in the West End comedy “George and Margaret”, which opened in   1937.

In time she played most of the classic comedy roles, from Mrs Malaprop to Lady Brakcnell and her own favourite, the medium Madame Arcati in Noel Coward’s “Blithe Spirit”. But her biggest stage success was in her more familiar guise as the lovable Cockney char in “Goodnight Mrs Puffin”, which ran for three years in the 1960s.   By then she had become a national figure through the cinema. She hadmade her first film in 1938 and after a long apprenticeship in small parts she came to the fore in comedies of the 1950s and 1960s like “The Belles of St Trinians”, “Brothers in Law”, “I’m All Right Jack”, “The Rebel” (with Tony Hancock) and “Heavens Above”. Her best film parts were the disapproving wife of Peter Sellers’s Communist shop steward in “I’m All Right Jack” and the Marxist mother of David Warner in “Morgan, A Suitable Case for Treatment”.    In 1965 she surprised and delighted the publishing world with her first novel, “The Sioux”, the portrait of an aristocratic French family, written with originality and insight and revealing a less comfortable side to her personality than had been suggested by her stage Cockneys. She had begun the first draft of the book when she was 14. For 40 years it lay untouched in a linen cupboard and was finally pulled out during a long run of “Goodnight Mrs Puffin” – when she decided that writing might be a good way of recharging her creative batteries.   A sequel, “The Gold Tip Pfitzer”, appeared to similar acclaim in 1973.

The climax of a busy career on television was the comedy series “For the Love of Ada”, in which she and Wilfred Pickles played an elderly couple finding romance late in life. It rans for three years from 1970 and spawned a film, though its comedy did not transfer happily to the large screen.   Her other television work included the children’s comedies “Metal Mickey” and “Supergran”.   Irene Handl continued to make films, do television shows and even
appear in Christmas pantomimes until she was well into her eighties.

Unmarried, she usually had a chihuahua dog for a close companion, and she had an unlikely passion for the records of Elvis Presley.

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

Irene Handl
Irene Handl
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Martin Jarvis

Martin Jarvis was born in 1941 in Cheltleham.   He made his first television appearance in 1965 in an episode of “Doctor Who” on BBC.   Two years later he played Jon in the hughly popular “The Forsyte Saga” and also starred in “Rings on her Fingers” between 1978 and 1980.   He has made appearances in Hollywood on American television series such as “Murder She Wrote” and “Walker”.   His films include “Buster”, “Titanic” and “Mrs Caldicot’s Cabbage War”.   He is married to actress Rosalind Ayres.

IMDB entry:

Martin Jarvis OBE is one of Britain’s most versatile leading actors. His distinguished career continues to encompass just about every aspect of the entertainment industry: film, television, theatre, radio and audio recording. He is also the author of two bestselling books: a hilarious autobiography Acting Strangely and a compelling account of his award-winning time on Broadway in 2001: Broadway, Jeeves – The Diary of a Theatrical Adventure, both published by Methuen. In 2010 he starred as Vincent Hogg in a new production of Agatha Christie’s The Mirror Cracked in ITV/WGHB’s popular ‘Miss Marple’ series. In 2009, he starred in BBC2’s comedy/drama Taking the Flak, receiving outstanding reviews for his performance as national treasure tv journalist David Bradburn. He stars in the feature film Neander Jin – Return of the Neanderthal Man (US/ Germany co-production, 2010) as Peter Blodnik, network mogul. Alongside his screen and theatre career he is a prolific director of radio drama and, with his wife, actress/director Rosalind Ayres, produces plays and readings for BBC. His award-winning productions include Shadowlands, David Mamet’s Keep Your Pantheon, Ayckbourn’s Man of the Moment and Ian Fleming’s Dr No. He has homes in London and Los Angeles. He trained at RADA (Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London, England), where he won the Vanbrugh Award and the Silver Medal. He is an Associate of RADA (Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London, England). He was awarded the OBE (Officer of the British Empire) in the 2000 Queen’s New Years Honors List for his services to drama. In 2006, he appeared at the Santa Fe Arts Festival in New Mexico in Wilde’s The Canterville Ghost with Shirley Maclaine and Ali McGraw. Earlier in the same year, he starred in Honour at Wyndham’s Theatre, London giving an acclaimed performance opposite Dame Diana Rigg. On screen that year he played Leonard in BBC-TV’s modern version of “Much Ado About Nothing” and (in 2005) starred as “Malvolio” in “Twelfth Night” at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre. He received a Theatre World Award on Broadway in 2001 for his title role performance in “By Jeeves” which he also filmed. His West End, National, Almeida and Donmar theatre appearances include works by Sir Alan Ayckbourn, Michael Frayn, Harold Pinter CH, Somerset Maugham, Sir George Bernard Shaw and Oscar Wilde. He played Jack Worthing opposite Dame Judi Dench’s Lady Bracknell in Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest” at the National Theatre in the 1980s directed by Sir Peter Hall, and premiered Pinter’s “Other Places” in the National’s Cottesloe Theatre. Pinter directed him in the leading role of Hector in Giraudoux’s “The Trojan War Will Not Take Place.” He met Sir Alan Ayckbourn at the National and subsequently went on to star in his “Woman in Mind,” “Henceforward,” “Just Between Ourselves” and “By Jeeves.” His Screen credits include leading roles in the British/Australian mini-series “Bootleg,” “Inspector Lynley Mysteries,” “Lorna Doone,” Frayn’s “Make and Break,” “Ike – The War Years” (with Robert Duvall) and “The Bunker” (with Sir Anthony Hopkins.) He was “Linus” in Sir Richard Eyre’s film, “Absence of War written by Sir David Hare. He has guest starred (very often as villains) in “Inspector Morse,” “Frost,” “Lovejoy,” “Casualty,” “Murder Most Horrid,” “Dr Who,” “Space Above and Beyond,” “Murder, She Wrote” and “Walker: Texas Ranger” in the US. He played monstrous Neil Biddle in “Sex ‘N’ Death” and was a memorable television Uriah Heep in “David Copperfield” on British television. First major screen role: ‘Jon’ in the multi-award winning “The Forsyte Saga.” He followed this with many ‘classic serials’ including “The Way of All Flesh (in which he starred as Ernest Pontifex), “Nicholas Nickleby” (title role), “The Moonstone,” “Little Women” and “The Pallisers.” His feature films include the psychological thriller “Framed” (2007), “Mrs Caldicot’s Cabbage War,” James Cameron’s “Titanic,” “Kid With the X-Ray Eyes,” “Buster,” “The Last Escape,” and “Taste the Blood of Dracula.” His voice can be heard in numerous television animation series as well as feature films including “Flushed Away” and “Eragon.” He has narrated “Peter and the Wolf at the Barbican” and appeared with City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Scottish Chamber Orchestra as Narrator for Egmont and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” At the Chichester Festival Theatre he starred with Sir John Gielgud in “Paradise Lost,” with Googie Withers CBE and Susan Hampshire OBE in “The Circle” and with concert pianist Lucy Parham in “Beloved Clara.” Jarvis & Ayres Productions, which he founded with his wife, Rosalind Ayres, has produced many award-winning dramas and readings for BBC Radio, National Public Radio in America and for audio books. Their work includes outstanding interpretations of plays by Sir George Bernard Shaw, Sir Alan Ayckbourn, Harold Pinter CH, Michael Frayn, David Mamet, Hugh Whitemore, Robert Shearman, Tennessee Williams, Oscar Wilde, and many more. British and American stars who have been associated with J&A productions include, in the UK: Dame Judi Dench, Sir Ian McKellen, Dame Diana Rigg, Alfred Molina, Richard E. Grant, Michael York OBE, Richard Briers CBE, Pauline Collins OBE, Janie Dee, Fiona Shaw CBE, Miriam Margolyes OBE, Patricia Hodge, Twiggy Lawson, Natascha McElhone, Martin Freeman, Barry Humphries CBE, Phil Collins and in the US: Brendan Fraser, Elaine Stritch, Teri Garr, Stacy Keach, Shirley Knight, Hector Elizondo, Bruce Davison, Matthew Wolf, Eric Stoltz, Rebecca Pidgeon, Ed Begley Jr, Ed O’Neill and Gregory Peck. Directors of J&A dramas include: David Mamet, Michael Grandage, David Grindley, Sir Alan Ayckbourn, Pete Atkin, Rosalind Ayres. Their productions have received Audie and Earphone awards in the US. In September 2006, he directed Teri Garr, Michael York OBE and Alfred Molina in an acclaimed production of “Pack of Lies” for BBC Radio 4. He and Fiona Shaw CBE starred for five years in the popular BBC series “Our Brave Boys.” His Just William audio and radio recordings are world wide best sellers. He was the subject of BBC TV’s This Is Your Life in 1999.

– IMDb Mini Biography By: Tricia Giles

The above IMDB entry can also be accessed online here.

 

Martin Jarvis
Martin Jarvis
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Paula Prentiss

 

Paula Prentiss is a tall lanky comedy actor who graced American films of the 1960’s.   She was born in 1938 in San Antonio, Texas.   In 1960 she made her movie debut with her often film partner Jim Hutton in “Where the Boys Are”.   She went on to star in “The Honeymoon Machine”, “The Horizontal Lieutenant” and “The World of Henry Orient” with Peter Sellers and Angela Lansbury.   She and her husband Richard Benjamin had their own television series “He & She” from 1967 for a season.

TCM Overview:

A vivacious brunette comic player, Paula Prentiss began in lightweight, coquettish roles in the 1960s and shifted to more meaty dramatic fare in the 70s before curtailing her career in favor of raising a family. The daughter of an Italian immigrant and his wife, Prentiss graduated from the famed acting program at Northwestern University. Spotted by talent scouts, she was put under contract at MGM, where she was frequently partnered onscreen with Jim Hutton, beginning with her debut feature “Where the Boys Are” (1960). Having conquered the teen audience, Prentiss offered what many feel is her best performance as Rock Hudson’s overbearing girlfriend in Howard Hawks’ “Man’s Favorite Sport?” (1964) She continued to win the attention of adult moviegoers as Peter Sellers’ married conquest in “The World of Henry Orient” (1964) and as a stripper chasing Peter O’Toole in “What’s New Pussycat” (1965). She retired from features for five years, during which she co-starred with her husband Richard Benjamin in the CBS sitcom “He and She” (1967-68) as a scatterbrained social worker married to a cartoonist.

Prentiss resumed her film career as Elliot Gould’s wife in the dismal “Move” (1970). She fared better as the sexy Nurse Duckett in “Catch-22” (also 1970), directed by Mike Nichols. In “The Parallax View” (1974), Prentiss shone in the brief role of a TV reporter who feared for her life after witnessing a political assassination. The following year, her natural, down-to-earth style was most apparent when she uttered her introductory line concerning her family’s last name being “Marco. That’s upward mobility for Markowitz” in “The Stepford Wives” (1975).

Prentiss curtailed her schedule for much of the late 70s into the early 90s to concentrate on child-rearing, although she accepted the occasional juicy role. In “The Black Marble” (1980), she was a cop romantically involved with her partner, played Jack Lemmon’s wife in Billy Wilder’s last feature “Buddy, Buddy” (1981) and acted opposite Benjamin in the horror spoof “Saturday the 14th” (1981). Her small screen credits include the TV-movies “Packin’ It In” (CBS, 1983) and “M.A.D.D.: Mothers Against Drunk Driving” (NBC, 1983). With her children grown and in college, she began to resume her career in earnest with guest appearances on “Murder, She Wrote” and “Burke’s Law”, an uncredited bit as a nasty nurse in the Benjamin-directed “Mrs. Winterbourne” (1996) and an L.A. stage role as a dying woman in “Angel’s Share” in 1997.

 The above TCM overview can also be accessed online here.
Paula Prentiss
Paula Prentiss
Paula Prentiss
Paula Prentiss
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Judith Anderson

Judith Anderson was a commanding stage actress who acted on film on occasion.   She was born in 1898 in Adelaide, South Australia.   She made her stage debut at 15.   She made her Broadway debut in 1922 in “On the Stairs”.   Her best known work on celluloid is as Mrs Danvers, the housekeeper of Manderly in Alfred Hitchcock’s classic “Rebecca” in 1940.   Other films included “The Furies”, “Laura” with Gene Tierney, “The Ten Commandments” in 1956, “Cinderfella” as the stepmother of Jerry Lewis and “A Man Called Horse” with Richard Harris.   She died in Santa Barbbara at the age of 93 in 1992.

TCM Overview:
A leading Broadway star from the 1920s through the 50s, Judith Anderson was perhaps most famous for her savage, award-winning performance as “Medea” in 1947; as a formidable Lady Macbeth (opposite Laurence Olivier in London in 1937 and Maurice Evans on Broadway in 1941); and as an interpreter of the neurotic heroines of Eugene O’Neill (Nina in “Strange Interlude” in 1928 and Lavinia in “Mourning Becomes Electra” in 1932). Anderson made her film debut in 1933 and played the sinister housekeeper Mrs. Danvers in Hitchcock’s “Rebecca” seven years later. It was the first, and most memorable, in a series of malevolent character roles that exploited her severe features and commanding presence. Cast against type, Anderson made an effective Big Mama in Richard Brooks’ film adaptation of “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” (1958). Late in her career she gained a new following as campy grande dame Minx Lockridge on the NBC TV soap opera, “Santa Barbara”.

Dame Judith Anderson
Dame Judith Anderson
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Jack Warden

Jack Warden was born in 1920 in Newark, New Jersey.   He first achieved major public recognition as one of the jury members in the 1957 classic film “12 Angry Men” which starred Henry Fonda.   His other films included “Brian’s Song”,”Shampoo”, “Heaven Can Wait” and “And Justice for All”.   He died in 2006 aged 86.

Tom Vallance’s obituary in “The Independent”

The actor Jack Warden, whose accolades included an Emmy award and two Oscar nominations, was one of several notable talents who came from television to the movie screen in the late Fifties, along with such directors as John Frankenheimer and Sidney Lumet, and writers such as Paddy Chayevsky and Reginald Rose.

His first major screen roles were in three exceptional films of 1957, all adapted from television plays, including Lumet’s Twelve Angry Men, written by Rose, in which he made an indelible impression as the irascible, gruff-voiced juror number seven, a gum-chewing salesman who wants a quick verdict so that he can attend a baseball match. His other films that year were Martin Ritt’s Edge of the City, written by Robert Alan Aurthur, and Delbert Mann’s The Bachelor Party, by Chayevsky.

An intense actor with a tough exterior, Warden was memorable in both films – in the first as a corrupt and bigoted dockside union official who becomes homicidal when he clashes with an army deserter (John Cassavetes) and a rebellious black dock worker (Sidney Poitier), and in the second as a book-keeper who invites office pals to a party for a friend who is about to get married. Ageing and lonely, Warden’s character puts on a brave front until breaking down in a painfully real crying scene.

Warden was later to show that he could also get laughs and he won two Oscar nominations for humorous performances, for his role as a husband in Shampoo (1975) who is easily cuckolded by hairdresser Warren Beatty because he is convinced that all hairdressers are gay, and as a perpetually flustered football coach in Heaven Can Wait (1978) aware (though incredulous) that his former protégé has been reincarnated after a fatal accident. Though critics generally found the latter a heavy- handed remake of Alexander Hall’s delightful fantasy-comedy Here Comes Mr Jordan (1941), many singled out Warden’s hilarious performance as its saving virtue. “Warden’s done it all,” said his friend the actor Jack Ging. “He’s the kind of guy that Spencer Tracy used to play.”

Born in Newark, New Jersey, in 1920, he was raised in Kentucky, where he attended the DuPont Manuel High School in Louisville. At the age of 17, he was expelled for frequent fighting. Becoming a professional welter-weight prize-fighter, he had 13 fights, calling himself Johnny Costello (adopting his mother’s maiden name), but he was not notably successful. In 1938, having worked as a night-club bouncer, tugboat deckhand and lifeguard, he joined the US Navy and spent three years in China with the Yangtze River Patrol.

In 1941 he joined the Merchant Marine, but when the US entered the Second World War he switched to the Army, serving as a paratrooper with the 101st Airborne Division. He was due to take part in the Normandy landings in 1944, but just before D-Day he broke his leg during a night-time practice jump in England. It was during the ensuing long spell in hospital that he was given a copy of Clifford Odets’ play Waiting for Lefty, which prompted him to read more plays and instilled in him the ambition to be an actor. “That year in hospital was the turning point of my life,” he said later.

He returned to active duty to take part in the Battle of the Bulge, then, on his discharge at the war’s end he studied acting on the GI Bill. He spent more than a year with the Margo Jones repertory group in Dallas, then moved to New York, where he made his television début in 1948 with parts in the prestigious drama anthology series The Philco Television Playhouse and Studio One.

He made his screen début (the first of several bit roles) in a comedy starring Gary Cooper, You’re in the Navy Now (1951), in which two other unknowns, Lee Marvin and Charles Bronson, made their first film appearances. His first credited role was in the crime drama The Man with My Face (1951), starring Barry Nelson as an accountant who is the double of a gangster, and other early films included The Frogmen (1952) and From Here to Eternity (1953, as a corporal).

From 1953 he had a recurring role for three years in the television comedy series Mr Peepers. Later he became part of television history when he starred in the first episode filmed for the cult series The Twilight Zone (though it was not the first shown). Titled “The Lonely” (1959), it starred Warden as a convicted murderer imprisoned for life alone on an asteroid. Given a robotic companion, Alicia (Jean Marsh), by the sympathetic captain of a supply ship, he falls in love with the machine and when given a pardon he refuses to leave without her until it is dramatically proven that Alicia is not flesh and blood.

From 1967 to 1969 Warden starred in a crime series, NYPD, which was shot largely on location in New York City. In 1971 he won an Emmy Award as best supporting actor for his portrayal of the real-life football coach George Halas, of the Chicago Bears, in the tragic tale Brian’s Song.

Warden made his Broadway début in a revival of Golden Boy (1952) in which John Garfield reprised his original leading performance, and he also played small roles in the Arthur Miller double-bill A View From The Bridge/A Memory of Two Mondays (1955). His only musical was the Jerry Bock-Sheldon Harnick show The Body Beautiful (1958), but his most notable Broadway appearance came when he replaced Donald Pleasence as the star of Robert Shaw’s The Man in the Glass Booth (1969), directed by Harold Pinter.

After his breakthrough appearances in the 1957 movies, he was in constant demand for the sort of screen parts – cops, sports coaches, military men – that matched his gruff exterior, though many of his characters displayed a soft centre. He played military men in The Thin Red Line (1964) and Raid on Entebbe (1977), the brusque President in Being There (1978), a German doctor in Death on the Nile (1978), twin automobile salesmen – one good, one bad – in Used Cars (1980), Paul Newman’s law partner in The Verdict (1982), and he showed his comic flair as the senile, gun-carrying judge in the satiric . . . And Justice for All (1979), Shampoo, Heaven Can Wait and as a flustered theatre producer in Woody Allen’s Bullets Over Broadway (1995).

In All The President’s Men (1976), Alan J. Pakula’s riveting account of the exposure of the Watergate scandal by the journalists Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, Warden played the Washington Post’s city editor, Harry M. Rosenfeld, who recalled that the actor spent some time watching him work, though he assured the editor that “I play a part – I don’t play you.” Rosenfeld described Warden as “a skilled performer and a splendid fellow who possessed a strong personality and yet seemed rather shy for an actor”.

Warden made over 100 movies, more recent ones including While You Were Sleeping (1995), Things to Do in Denver When You’re Dead (1995), Woody Allen’s Mighty Aphrodite (1995), Warren Beatty’s Bulworth (1998) and, his final film, a football comedy, The Replacements (2000), with Keanu Reeves and Gene Hackman.

Tom Vallance

The above obituary can also be accessed online here.

Jack Warden
Jack Warden
Jack Warden & Madlyn Rhue
Jack Warden & Madlyn Rhue
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Mike Gwilym

 

 

Mike Gwilym was born in Wales in 1949.   He made his television debut in “Edward the Seventh” in 1975.   Other television roles included “How Green Was My Valley” and Dick Francis’s “The Racing Game” where he played ex-jockey now private detective Sid Halley.   His films include “Hopscotch” in 1980 with Walter Matthau and Glenda Jackson, “Priest of Love” and “Venom”.

“Wikipedia” entry:

Born in Neath, Gwilym is the brother of actor Robert Gwilym, son of Arthur Aubrey Remington Gwilym and Renée Mathilde Eugénie Léonce Dupont.   His parents were the proprietors of a women’s clothing chain in Wales. Mike’s Belgian maternal grandfather was the oil industrialist Edmond Jules Dupont from Liège. Mike Gwilym’s interest in acting began while at Wycliffe Preparatory School,[4][5]but he began his acting career while at university at Oxford with the Oxford University Dramatic Society, and went on to join the Glasgow Citizens’ Theatre before becoming an associate actor of the Royal Shakespeare Company  His stage debut was as ‘Prince Hal’ in Henry IV, Part 1 at the Playhouse Theatre, Sheffield, UK in 1969.

Gwilym joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1974; his debut in London was with that company in that year as ‘Vlass’ inSummerfolk, at the Aldwych Theatre.[3] He starred in many of their productions during the late 1970s and early 1980s, including The Comedy of Errors, King Lear, Troilus and Cressida, and Love’s Labour’s Lost. He made his television debut in the BBC‘s 1975 adaptation of How Green Was My Valley. His most high-profile role was as jockey-turned-detective Sid Halley in The Racing Game, a six-part Yorkshire Television series based on Dick Francis‘s 1965 novel Odds Against,[6] and his film credits include roles in Hopscotch (1980), Venom (1981), Priest of Love(1981), A.D. (1985), and Peter the Great (1986). He subsequently returned to playing classical roles on stage and screen. In the BBC Television Shakespeare series, he starred in Coriolanus (as Aufidius), in Love’s Labour’s Lost (as Berowne), and Pericles, Prince of Tyre in the title role.

Gwilym retired from the professional stage to the South of Spain (province of Malaga), where his parents had a summer home. From the year 2001 he has shared a home with his partner in Sotogrande in the province of Cadiz.

The above “Wikipedia” entry can lso be accessed online here.

Mike Gwilym
Mike Gwilym
Mike Gwilym
Mike Gwilym
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Ian Gillan

Ian Gillan
Ian Gillan
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David Duchovny

David Duchovny was born in 1960  in New York City.   His film ebut came in 1988 in “Working Girl” with Melanie Griffith.   His other early work included “Chaplin” and the television series “Twin Peaks”.   He starred in the hughly popular TV series “The X Files” from 1993 until 2002.   Since then he has been in such films as “Trust the Ma” and “The Joneses”.

IMDB entry:

David William Duchovny was born on August 7, 1960, in New York City, New York, USA. His mother was a school teacher, his father a writer and publicist who worked for the American Jewish Committee. David has a sister, Laurie and an older brother namedDaniel Ducovny, an award winning director of commercials, as well as a director of photography.

David attended Yale University where he undertook a Master’s Degree in English Literature. A keen poet and writer, David’s work was well recognized by his peers and teachers while he was in attendance at Yale. He was even nominated for a college prize by the Academy of American Poets for his outstanding work within the literary field.

Like any actor or celebrity, David began his career on the bottom, by acting in numerous commercials in the late-eighties. He crossed over into films with bit parts in low key films such as New Year’s Day (1989) and Bad Influence (1990). Although these parts were small and somewhat insignificant, it was a start and David was able to get his foot in the door.

In 1991, David got offered the role of DEA Dennis Bryson on the acclaimed TV series,Twin Peaks (1990). He only appeared in three episodes, but at that early stage, it was his biggest claim to fame yet, as Twin Peaks (1990) was watched by millions of people worldwide. Needless to say, David’s talents as an actor would finally be recognized and he would get the acknowledgment that he so richly deserved.

In the early 1990s, he got more bit parts in films, this time, however, the films weren’t “low key”, but hits, such as Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead (1991) and the family favorite comedy, Beethoven (1992). David’s role in Beethoven (1992) was small, but it was hard to forget the poor guy who was dragged across the lawn by the giant St. Bernard!

A year later, in 1993, David got the lead role in the independent film Kalifornia (1993). The film also starred another up-and-coming young actor, Brad Pitt. In Kalifornia (1993), David played a journalist who goes on a cross-country tour of famous murder sites with his girlfriend as research for a book he is writing about serial killers. He takes Pitt’s character along to help pay the bills, unaware that Pitt’s character is in fact a serial killer himself. Although it did not do much business at the box office, it is still a great film and has become somewhat of a cult favorite among fans.

That same year, David was offered the role of FBI Agent Fox “Spooky” Mulder on the long-running TV series The X-Files (1993). The show was a tremendous international success and propelled David (and his co-star Gillian Anderson) into super-stardom. His character of Mulder has become somewhat of a pop culture legend and is renowned the world over for his satirical wit and dry sense of humor. Fans loved the fact that he could keep a straight face and still crack and joke in the face of extreme danger. David improvised a lot of his own lines of dialogue while on the show and even penned and directed a few episodes. The series ended in 2002 and still has a strong, dedicated following. To date, David has reprised his role of Fox Mulder in two “X Files” feature films: The X Files (1998) and The X Files: I Want to Believe (2008).

During the initial run of The X-Files (1993), David kept busy and made several films, such as: Return to Me (2000), alongside actress Minnie Driver and the comedy favoriteEvolution (2001), with Julianne MooreSeann William Scott and Orlando Jones. He even had a hysterical cameo as a self-obsessed, simple-minded hand model in the comedy-smash Zoolander (2001).

In 2007, after a few years out of the limelight, David struck gold again after landing the plum role of Hank Moody in Californication (2007). The raunchy series follows the life of womanizing writer Hank Moody (Duchovny) as he tries to juggle his career and his relationship with his daughter and his ex-girlfriend. The show has become a hit for its off-the-wall humor and Duchovny’s ability to always turn in a brilliant performance.

It may have taken a while, but David has worked his way to the top and notched up an impressive resume along the way. We can expect to see a lot more of him in the future.

– IMDb Mini Biography By: cryofry

The above IMDB enty can also be accessed online here.

David Duchovny
David Duchovny
Aside

Muriel Angelus

Muriel Angelus was born in 1909 in London of Scottish parents.   Her first movie was the silent “The Ringer” in 1928.   Up until 1935 she alternated between making films and appearing on the London stage.   She then went to Broadway to appear in the hit show “The Boys from Syracuse” with Eddie Albert.   She then went to Hollywood where she made such films as “The Light that Failed” with Ronald Colman and Ida Lupino  “The Great McGinty” directed by the great Preston Sturges with Brian Donlevy.   On her marriage in 1943 she retired from acting.   Muriel Angelus deid at the age of 95 in 2004.

Gary Brumburgh’s entry:

The memories are vague when it comes to recalling this London-born leading lady, but Muriel Angelus did have her moments. She managed to appear in a few classic Broadway musical shows and Hollywood films before her early retirement in the mid-1940s. Of Scottish parentage, the former Muriel Findlay developed a sweet-voiced soprano at an early age. She made her singing debut at 12, eventually changing her name and becoming a popular music hall performer. She entered films toward the end of the silent era with The Ringer (1928), the first of three movie versions of the Edgar Wallace play. Her second film Sailor Don’t Care (1928) was important only in that she met her first husband, Scots-born actor John Stuart. Her part was excised from the film. Though in her first sound picture Night Birds (1930), she got to sing a number, most of her films did not usurp her musical talents. The sweet-natured actress who played both ingenues and ‘other woman’ roles co-starred with husband Stuart in No Exit (1930), Eve’s Fall (1930) and Hindle Wakes (1931), and appeared with British star Monty Banks in some of his farcical comedies, including My Wife’s Family (1932) and So You Won’t Talk (1935). Muriel received a career lift with the glossy musical London hit “Balalaika” and a chain of events happened with its success. It led to her securing the pivotal role of Adriana in “The Boys From Syracuse” and, in turn, a contract with Paramount Pictures. Divorced from Stuart by this time, Muriel settled in Hollywood and made her best films while there. She was touching as girlfriend to blind painter Ronald Colman in The Light That Failed (1939), a second remake of the Rudyard Kipling novel, and appeared to great advantage in Preston Sturges’ classic satire The Great McGinty (1940) as _Brian Donlevy_’s secretary. After scoring another long-running Broadway hit with “Early To Bed” in 1943, Muriel met Radio City Music Hall orchestra conductor Paul Lavalle while appearing on radio in New York and married him in 1946. She retired to raise a family in New England. They had a daughter, Suzanne, who later worked for NBC. Muriel pretty much stayed out of the limelight for the remainder of her life. She died at 95 in a Virginia nursing home in 2004, some seven years after her husband’s death.

– IMDb Mini Biography By: Gary Brumburgh / gr-home@pacbell.net

Muriel Angelus.
Muriel Angelus.