Image of Laurence Olivier

Laurence Olivier

Laurence Kerr Olivier, Baron Olivier, OM (22 May 1907 – 11 July 1989) was an English actor and director who, along with his contemporaries Ralph Richardson, Peggy Ashcroft and John Gielgud, dominated the British stage of the mid-20th century. He also worked in films throughout his career, playing more than fifty cinema roles. Late in his career, he had considerable success in television roles. His family had no theatrical connections, but Olivier's father, a clergyman, decided that his son should become an actor. After attending a drama school in London, Olivier learned his craft in a succession of acting jobs during the late 1920s. In 1930 he had his first important West End success in Noël Coward's Private Lives, and he appeared in his first film. In 1935 he played in a celebrated production of Romeo and Juliet alongside Gielgud and Ashcroft, and by the end of the decade he was an established star. In the 1940s, together with Richardson and John Burrell, Olivier was the co-director of the Old Vic, building it into a highly respected company. There his most celebrated roles included Shakespeare's Richard III and Sophocles's Oedipus. In the 1950s Olivier was an independent actor-manager, but his stage career was in the doldrums until he joined the avant garde English Stage Company in 1957 to play the title role in The Entertainer, a part he later played on film. From 1963 to 1973 he was the founding director of Britain's National Theatre, running a resident company that fostered many future stars. His own parts there included the title role in Othello (1965) and Shylock in The Merchant of Venice (1970). Among Olivier's films are Wuthering Heights (1939), Rebecca (1940), and a trilogy of Shakespeare films as actor-director: Henry V (1944), Hamlet (1948), and Richard III (1955). His later films included The Shoes of the Fisherman (1968), Sleuth (1972), Marathon Man (1976), and The Boys from Brazil (1978). His television appearances included an adaptation of The Moon and Sixpence (1960), Long Day's Journey into Night (1973), Love Among the Ruins (1975), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1976), Brideshead Revisited (1981) and King Lear (1983). Olivier's honours included a knighthood (1947), a life peerage (1970) and the Order of Merit (1981). For his on-screen work he received four Academy Awards, two British Academy Film Awards, five Emmy Awards and three Golden Globe Awards. The National Theatre's largest auditorium is named in his honour, and he is commemorated in the Laurence Olivier Awards, given annually by the Society of London Theatre. He was married three times, to the actresses Jill Esmond from 1930 to 1940, Vivien Leigh from 1940 to 1960, and Joan Plowright from 1961 until his death. Description above from the Wikipedia article Laurence Olivier, licensed under CC-BY-SA, full list of contributors on Wikipedia.


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Born:
May 22, 1907 In Dorking, Surrey, England, UK
Movie/TV Credits:
116
First Appeared:
In the movie The Temporary Widow 1930-07-13
Latest Project:
Series Wagner 2022
Known For
Poster of The World At War
Poster of Clash of the Titans
Poster of The Boys from Brazil
Poster of Spartacus
Filmography
Series Wagner Pfeuffer 2022
Movie The World At War 演员 2022
Movie Charmed Lives: A Family Romance Self (archive footage) 2022
Movie Vivien Leigh, autant en emporte le vent self 2020-01-03
Movie Nothing Like a Dame (archival footage) 2018-05-02
Movie And the Oscar Goes To... Unknown 2014-02-01
Series Talking Pictures Himself 2013-01-05
Movie Cameraman: The Life and Work of Jack Cardiff Himself (archive footage) 2010-05-05
Movie Jornal Português (1938-1951) Himself (archive footage) 2005-12-12
Movie Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow Dr. Totenkopf 2004-09-17
Movie The Filth and the Fury Richard III (archive footage) 2000-03-29
Movie Hitchcock, Selznick and the End of Hollywood (archive footage) 1999-01-23
Movie The Silver Screen: Color Me Lavender Himself (archive footage) 1997-11-01
Movie Preminger: Anatomy of a Filmmaker Unknown 1991-10-28
Movie Vivien Leigh: Scarlett and Beyond Self (archive footage) 1990-10-22
Movie War Requiem The Old Soldier 1989-01-06
Movie The Making of a Legend: Gone with the Wind (archive footage) 1988-10-01
Series Peter the Great King William III of Orange 1986-02-02
Movie Directed by William Wyler Unknown 1986-05-01
Series Lost Empires Harry Burrard 1986-10-24
Movie Wild Geese II Rudolf Hess 1985-10-18
Movie The Ebony Tower Unknown 1984-04-01
Movie A Talent for Murder Dr. Anthony Wainwright 1984-01-17
Movie The Jigsaw Man Adm. Sir Gerald Scaith 1984-08-24
Movie A Voyage Round My Father Clifford Mortimer 1984-04-19
Movie The Bounty Admiral Hood 1984-05-04
Series The Last Days of Pompeii Gaius 1984-05-06
Movie Hollywood Out-takes and Rare Footage Himself (archive footage) 1983-02-25
Movie Mr. Halpern and Mr. Johnson Joe Halpern 1983-08-23
Movie King Lear King Lear 1983-04-03
Movie Inchon Gen. Douglas MacArthur 1982-05-04
Movie At the Haunted End of the Day Self 1981-01-01
Movie Clash of the Titans Zeus 1981-06-12
Series Brideshead Revisited Alexander Flyte, Lord Marchmain 1981-10-12
Movie The Jazz Singer Cantor Rabinovitch 1980-12-17
Movie A Little Romance Julius 1979-04-27
Movie Dracula Prof. Abraham Van Helsing 1979-07-20
Movie Saturday, Sunday, Monday Antonio 1978-01-01
Movie The Boys from Brazil Ezra Lieberman 1978-10-05
Movie Daphne Laureola Sir Joseph 1978-01-15
Movie The Betsy Loren Hardeman 1978-02-02
Series Jesus of Nazareth Nicodemus 1977-01-06
Movie The Real Jesus of Nazareth Unknown 1977-01-03
Movie A Bridge Too Far Dr. Jan Spaander 1977-06-15
Movie Come Back, Little Sheba Doc Delaney 1977-12-31
Movie The Magic of Hollywood... Is the Magic of People Unknown 1976-10-06
Movie The Collection Harry 1976-01-01
Movie The Gentleman Tramp Narrator 1976-10-10
Movie Marathon Man Christian Szell 1976-10-08
Movie Cat on a Hot Tin Roof Big Daddy 1976-12-06
Series Laurence Olivier Presents Big Daddy 1976-12-05
Movie The Seven-Per-Cent Solution Professor James Moriarty 1976-10-24
Movie Love Among the Ruins Sir Arthur Glanville-Jones 1975-03-06
Movie Long Day's Journey Into Night James Tyrone Sr. 1973-03-10
Movie The Merchant of Venice Shylock 1973-10-07
Series The World at War Narrator 1973-10-31
Movie Lady Caroline Lamb Duke of Wellington 1972-11-22
Movie Sleuth Andrew Wyke 1972-12-10
Series Great Performances self 1971-01-28
Movie Nicholas and Alexandra Count Witte 1971-11-29
Movie Three Sisters Dr. Ivan Chebutikin 1970-04-01
Movie Oh! What a Lovely War Field Marshal Sir John French 1969-03-10
Movie Male of the Species Narrator 1969-01-03
Movie Battle of Britain Air Chief Marshal Sir Hugh Dowding 1969-09-15
Movie David Copperfield Mr. Creakle 1969-12-01
Series The Dick Cavett Show Himself - Guest 1968-06-06
Movie Romeo and Juliet Narrator (voice) (uncredited) 1968-04-02
Movie The Shoes of the Fisherman Piotr Ilyich Kamenev 1968-11-14
Movie Khartoum Mahdi 1966-06-09
Series ABC Stage 67 Unknown 1966-09-14
Movie Great Acting: Laurence Olivier Interviewee 1966-12-31
Movie Olivier Talks About Othello Self/Host 1965-01-01
Movie Othello Othello 1965-12-15
Movie Bunny Lake Is Missing Supt. Newhouse 1965-10-03
Movie Uncle Vanya Dr. Astrov 1963-11-20
Movie Term of Trial Graham Weir 1962-08-16
Movie The Power and the Glory Priest 1961-10-29
Movie The Entertainer Archie Rice 1960-07-25
Movie Spartacus Marcus Licinius Crassus 1960-10-13
Movie The Devil's Disciple Gen. Burgoyne 1959-08-20
Movie The Prince and the Showgirl The Regent 1957-06-13
Series Tony Awards Himself - Recipient 1956-04-01
Movie Richard III Richard III 1955-12-13
Series The Oscars Unknown 1953-03-18
Movie A Queen Is Crowned Narrator 1953-06-02
Movie The Beggar's Opera MacHeath 1953-10-05
Movie Carrie George Hurstwood 1952-07-17
Movie The Magic Box Police Constable 94-B 1951-01-01
Movie Hamlet Hamlet - Prince of Denmark / Voice of Ghost 1948-12-10
Movie The Volunteer Himself 1944-01-10
Movie Henry V King Henry 1944-11-24
Movie This Happy Breed Narrator (voice) 1944-05-28
Movie The Demi-Paradise Unknown 1943-11-18
Movie Malta G.C. Narrator 1942-01-01
Movie Words for Battle Narrator (voice) 1941-01-24
Movie That Hamilton Woman Lord Horatio Nelson 1941-04-03
Movie 49th Parallel Johnnie, the Trapper 1941-11-24
Movie Rebecca 'Maxim' de Winter 1940-03-23
Movie Hollywood: Style Center of the World Himself 1940-05-29
Movie 21 Days Larry Durrant 1940-01-07
Movie Pride and Prejudice Mr. Darcy 1940-07-26
Movie Cavalcade of the Academy Awards Himself 1940-07-31
Movie Wuthering Heights Heathcliff 1939-04-07
Movie Q Planes Tony McVane 1939-06-20
Movie The Divorce of Lady X Everard Logan 1938-01-15
Movie Fire Over England Michael Ingolby 1937-03-05
Movie As You Like It Orlando 1936-09-02
Movie The Conquest of the Air Vincent Lunardi 1936-12-01
Movie Moscow Nights Captain Ivan Ignatoff 1935-11-05
Movie Perfect Understanding Nicholas Randall 1933-01-15
Movie Westward Passage Nicholas 'Nick' Allen 1932-05-27
Movie Potiphar's Wife Straker 1931-01-01
Movie The Yellow Ticket Julian Rolfe 1931-10-30
Movie Friends and Lovers Lieutenant Ned Nichols 1931-10-03
Movie The Temporary Widow Peter Bille 1930-07-13
Movie Too Many Crooks The Boy 1930-08-01