Ralph Richardson
(Movies & TV)
David Lean
(Movies & TV)
Laurence Olivier
(Movies & TV)
Richard Harris
(Movies & TV)
Simone Signoret
(Movies & TV)

See also

Alec Guinness

Knowledge Identifier: +Alec_Guinness


Alec Guinness

English actor add

Category: Movies & TV

Born in 1914.

Countries: United Kingdom (56%), United States (15%), (11%)

Main connections: Ralph Richardson, Hamlet, David Lean

Linked to: The Cocktail Party, Royal Navy, British Film Institute




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Alec Guinness was born in 1914 add something


John Le Mesurier - In September 1933 he enrolled at the Fay Compton Studio of Dramatic Art, where a fellow-student was Alec Guinness, with whom he became close friends


In all, between 2 April 1934 and 30 May 1989, he played 77 parts in the theatre add something


Guinness was 23 at the time he was performing in "Twelfth Night", so this would have been around 1937, by which time Laurel had become an international movie star add something


In 1937 he played Aumerle in "Richard II" and Lorenzo in "The Merchant of Venice" under the direction of John Gielgud add something


He starred in a 1938 production of "Hamlet" which won him acclaim on both sides of the Atlantic add something


He appeared as Romeo in a production of "Romeo and Juliet" , Andrew Aguecheek in "Twelfth Night" and as Exeter in "Henry V" in 1937, both opposite Laurence Olivier, and Ferdinand in "The Tempest," opposite Gielgud as Prospero add something


In 1939, he adapted Charles Dickens' novel "Great Expectations" for the stage, playing the part of Herbert Pocket add something


Martita Hunt - As Miss Havisham, she reprised her role from the 1939 stage adaptation by Alec Guinness which provided the inspiration and template for Lean's film


Guinness served in the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve in World War II, serving first as a seaman in 1941 and being commissioned the following year add something


Guinness returned to the Old Vic in 1946 and stayed until 1948, playing Abel Drugger in Ben Jonson's "The Alchemist", the Fool in "King Lear" opposite Laurence Olivier in the title role, DeGuiche in "Cyrano de Bergerac" opposite Ralph Richardson in the title role, and finally starring in an Old Vic production as Shakespeare's Richard II add something


One of its viewers was a young British film editor, David Lean, who would later have Guinness reprise his role in Lean's 1946 film adaptation of the play add something


After leaving the Old Vic, he played Eric Birling in J.B. Priestley's "An Inspector Calls" at the New Theatre in October 1946 add something


Jane Baxter - Another classic role in 1948 was Viola in "Twelfth Night" at the Old Vic, directed by Alec Guinness


Irene Worth - In the 1950s, Worth demonstrated her exceptional versatility by playing in the farce "Hotel Paradiso" in London with Alec Guinness, high tragedy in the title role of Schiller's "Mary Stuart", co-starring Eva Le Gallienne; and on Broadway and Shakespearean comedy in "As You Like It" at Stratford, Ontario


Last Holiday (1950 film) - "'Last Holiday"' is a 1950 British film featuring Alec Guinness in his sixth starring role


In 1951, exhibitors voted him the most popular British star add something


Frank Hauser (director) - In 1951, Hauser had applied to become Alec Guinness's assistant on his Festival of Britain production of Hamlet


The Lavender Hill Mob - "'The Lavender Hill Mob"' is a 1951 comedy film from Ealing Studios, written by T.E.B. Clarke, directed by Charles Crichton, starring Alec Guinness and Stanley Holloway and featuring Sid James and Alfie Bass


In 1952, director Ronald Neame cast Guinness in his first romantic lead role, opposite Petula Clark in "The Card" add something


However, in 1954, while he was filming "Father Brown" in Burgundy, Guinness, who was in costume as a Catholic priest, was mistaken for a real priest by a local child add something


Thelma Moss - She was one of the earliest members of The Actors Studio; as a scriptwriter, her biggest success was the screenplay for the 1954 Alec Guinness film "Father Brown"


Guinness was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1955, and was knighted in 1959 add something


Alec Guinness was formally received into the Roman Catholic Church on 24 March 1956 add something


Guinness won the Academy award for Best Actor in 1957 for his role in "The Bridge on the River Kwai" having been unsuccessfully nominated in 1952 for his performance in "The Lavender Hill Mob" add something


His wife followed suit in 1957 while he was in Sri Lanka filming "The Bridge on the River Kwai", and she informed him only after the event add something


Mike Morgan (actor) - His film acting debut was in the 1957 film comedy "Barnacle Bill", which starred Alec Guinness


He was nominated in 1958 for the Academy award for Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium, for his screenplay adapted from Joyce Cary's novel "The Horse's Mouth" add something


Jo Morrow - At Columbia she made some ten films and a dozen TV series episodes between 1958 and 1963, the most notable being "Our Man in Havana", in which she played Alec Guinness' daughter Milly


Kay Walsh - Her own favourite film role was that of the barmaid Miss D. Coker in Neame's 1958 film of "The Horse's Mouth", with Alec Guinness


John Bratby - In 1958 Bratby created works for the fictional artist Gulley Jimson in the Alec Guinness film "The Horse's Mouth"


David Lean - The film starred William Holden and Alec Guinness and became the largest box office hit in the United States in 1958.


A Passage to India (film) - Despite having quarrelled with Lean in the 1960s about a proposed film about Gandhi that ultimately was scrapped, Alec Guinness agreed to portray Professor Godbole


The Fall of the Roman Empire (film) - "'The Fall of the Roman Empire"' is a 1964 epic film starring Sophia Loren, Stephen Boyd, Alec Guinness, James_Mason, Christopher Plummer, Mel Ferrer and Omar Sharif


Gina Lollobrigida - She co-starred with Rock Hudson again in 1965's "Strange Bedfellows" and appeared alongside Alec Guinness in 1966's "Hotel Paradiso"


He next played the title role in "Macbeth" opposite Simone Signoret at the Royal Court Theatre in 1966, a conspicuous failure add something


Simone Signoret - Her one attempt at Shakespeare, performing Lady Macbeth opposite Alec Guinness at the Royal Court Theatre in London in 1966 proved to be ill-advised, although some critics were harsher and one referred to her English as "impossibly Gallic"


John Dexter - For Granada Television, Dexter directed "Twelfth Night", with Sir Alec Guinness and Sir Ralph Richardson, in 1969


Adrienne Corri - The range and versatility of her acting is shown by appearances in such diverse productions as the 1969 science fiction movie "Moon Zero Two" where she played opposite the ever dependable character actor Sam Kyd , and again in 1969, in "Twelfth Night", directed by John Sichel, as the Countess Olivia, where she played opposite Alec Guinness


Capitol Records - Capitol tried to strike gold again with another spoken word album, one made from the 1970 film "Cromwell", starring Richard Harris and Alec Guinness, but neither the film nor album were successful


Stratford Johns - Johns appeared as President of the Council Bradshaw in the 1970 *award-winning film "Cromwell" with Richard Harris in the role of Cromwell and Sir Alec Guinness as King Charles 1st


Guinness played the role of Jamessir Bensonmum, the blind butler, in the 1976 Neil Simon film "Murder By Death" add something


Guinness's role as Obi-Wan Kenobi in the original "Star Wars" trilogy, beginning in 1977, brought him worldwide recognition by a new generation, as well as Golden Globe and Academy award nominations add something


Michael Jayston - In 1979 he played Peter Guillam opposite Alec Guinness in the serial "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy"


Mark Strong - The same year, and most notably, he played the role of Jim Prideaux in the remake of "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy", which was earlier played by Ian Bannen in the iconic original 1979 BBC series starring Alec Guinness


He received an Academy Honorary award for lifetime achievement in 1980 add something


Ricky Schroder - He starred as the title character in the film "Little Lord Fauntleroy" alongside Alec Guinness in 1980


Donald Pleasence - Some notable early roles include Parsons in "1984" , his second Orwell film, and minor roles opposite Alec Guinness in "Barnacle Bill" and Dirk Bogarde in "The Wind Cannot Read"


Guinness wrote three volumes of a best-selling autobiography, beginning with "Blessings in Disguise" in 1985, followed by "My Name Escapes Me" in 1996, and "A Positively Final Appearance" in 1999 add something


In 1988, he received an Academy award nomination for Best Supporting Actor for "Little Dorrit" add something


Guinness made his final stage performance at the Comedy Theatre on 30 May 1989, in the play "A Walk in the Woods" add something


In 1991, he received an honorary doctorate from Cambridge University add something


Heinrich Mann - Mann was portrayed by Alec Guinness in the 1992 television adatpation of Christopher Hampton's play "Tales from Hollywood"


However, Guinness said in a 1999 interview that it was actually his idea to kill off Obi-Wan, persuading Lucas that it would make him a stronger character, and that Lucas agreed to the idea add something

Alec Guinness died in 2000 add something


Guinness died on 5 August 2000, from liver cancer, at Midhurst in West Sussex add something


The incident did not become public knowledge until April 2001, eight months after his death when a BBC News article claimed that Guinness was in fact bisexual and that he had successfully kept his sexuality private from the public eye as his closest friends and family members knew he had sexual relationships with men add something


" London: Continuum International Publishing Group, 2002 add something


Piers Paul Read - In 2003 his authorised biography of the actor Alec Guinness was published


" New York: Simon & Schuster, 2005 add something