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night of the hunter
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private life of henry viii

    key dates


      Born 1st July at Victoria Hotel, Scarborough


      Makes his professional stage debut in London's West End


      Makes several silent comedy shorts


      Marries Elsa Lanchester


      Arrives in US with the play Payment Deferred. Appears in the screen adaptation the following year


      Appears in The Sign of the Cross



      Oscar-nominated for his Bligh in Muting on the Bounty


      Gives the definitive portrayal of Quasimodo in The Hunchback of Notre Dame


      Makes The Canterville Ghost in Hollywood during World War 2


      Appears in The Big Clock


      Becomes an American citizen



      Oscar-nominated for his lawyer role in Witness for the Prosecution


      Appears in Spartacus


      Last role in Advise and Consent. Dies of cancer in Hollywood on 15th December



    1. Advise and Consent (1962)
    2. Spartacus (1960)

    3. Witness for the Prosecution (1957)
    4. Hobson's Choice (1954)
    5. "This Is Charles Laughton" (1953) TV Series
    6. Young Bess (1953)
    7. Salome (1953)
    8. Abbott and Costello Meet Captain Kidd (1952)
    9. O. Henry's Full House (1952)
    10. Strange Door, The (1951)
    11. Blue Veil, The (1951)
    12. Man on the Eiffel Tower, The (1950)

    13. Bribe, The (1949)
    14. Girl from Manhattan, The (1948)
    15. Big Clock, The (1948)
    16. Arch of Triumph (1948)
    17. Leben des Galilei (1947)
    18. Paradine Case, The (1947)
    19. Because of Him (1946)
    20. Captain Kidd (1945)
    21. Suspect, The (1945)
    22. Canterville Ghost, The (1944)
    23. Passport to Destiny (1944) (uncredited)
    24. Man from Down Under, The (1943)
    25. This Land Is Mine (1943)
    26. Forever and a Day (1943)
    27. Stand by for Action (1942)
    28. Tales of Manhattan (1942)
    29. Tuttles of Tahiti, The (1942)
    30. It Started with Eve (1941)
    31. They Knew What They Wanted (1940)

    32. Hunchback of Notre Dame, The (1939)
    33. Jamaica Inn (1939)
    34. Sidewalks of London (1938)
    35. Vessel of Wrath (1938)
    36. I, Claudius (1937)
    37. Rembrandt (1936)
    38. Mutiny on the Bounty (1935)
    39. Misérables, Les (1935)
    40. Ruggles of Red Gap (1935)
    41. Barretts of Wimpole Street, The (1934)
    42. White Woman (1933)
    43. Private Life of Henry VIII., The (1933)
    44. Island of Lost Souls (1933)
    45. Sign of the Cross, The (1932)
    46. If I Had a Million (1932)
    47. Payment Deferred (1932)
    48. Old Dark House, The (1932)
    49. Devil and the Deep (1932)
    50. Down River (1931)
    51. Wolves (1930)

    52. Piccadilly (1929)
    53. Blue Bottles (1928)
    54. Daydreams (1928)


    where was he buried?

      Interred at Forest Lawn, Hollywood Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA, in the Court of Remembrance.



Charles Laughton


    b. Scarborough, England

    Charles Laughton autographs, photographs and more @ ebay.com (direct link to signed items)

    Laughton's is one of the most interesting and troubled careers in the cinema. Possessed by unbridled rhetorical vitality, he was responsible for some of the most recklessly flamboyant characterizations the screen has seen. At other times, his doubts crippled him. Recognized in the 1930s as the screen's principal creator of larger-than-life characters, his career declined into inconsequential movies. All too easily, he mocked the parts he was playing, thus acquiring a reputation for being unmanageable.

    He was an artist with deep, volatile feelings who only occasionally found work in which he could believe. Thus there is an almost brutal contrast in his films, between careful invention and unchallenged ham. Like so many large, ugly actors, he was sometimes incapable of escaping the grossly malicious man he often played. Though happily married to Elsa Lanchester (they were good company), he was a homosexual, tortured by the need to be secret and truly guilt-ridden because of it. So he came to see his own looks as a merited rebuke: he was his own hunchback.

    Many of his "great performances" have dated badly, but one achievement grows richer with every viewing: his only direction, The Night of the Hunter (55), is one of the masterpieces of American cinema. It is proper to give some credit for it to James Agee, Stanley Cortez, and the great Robert Mitchum (who said that Laughton was the best director he worked for), but the Hans Anderson-like clarity of the conception, the extraordinary mythic precision, ad the ease with which the film moves from nightmare to lyric - those great virtues come from Laughton. Better still, the movie brings to life a chill, dewy innocence enough to dissolve the rabid grasp of hatred.

    Charles Laughton autographs, photographs and more @ ebay.com (direct link to signed items)

    After starting his career as an hotel manager, Laughton switched to acting. His performances in London's West End plays brought him early acclaim, which eventually led him to the Old Vic, Broadway and Hollywood. When he repeated his stage success in The Private Life of Henry VIII for Alexander Korda on film in 1933, he won a "Best Actor" Oscar.

    Known both for his fascination with the darker side of human behaviour and for his comic touch, Laughton should be watched as a frightening Nero in Sign of the Cross (1932), the triumphant employee in If I Had a Million (1932), the evil doctor in Island of Lost Souls (1932), the incestuous father in The Barretts of Wimpole Street (1934), the irrepressible Ruggles in Ruggles of Red Gap (1935), the overbearing Captain Bligh in Mutiny on the Bounty (1935), which garnered him another Oscar nomination, and the haunted hunchback in The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1939), with a very young Maureen O'Hara.

    During the war years, he played some light roles in Tales of Manhattan (1942), Forever and a Day (1943) and The Canterville Ghost (1944), among others. By the late '40s, Laughton sought greater challenges and returned to the stage in The Life of Galileo, which he translated from Bertolt Brecht's original and co-directed. As stage director and/or performer, he made Don Juan in Hell in 1951, John Brown's Body in 1953, The Caine Mutiny Court Martial in 1954, and Shaw's Major Barbara in 1956, all in New York.

    Charles Laughton autographs, photographs and more @ ebay.com (direct link to signed items)

    When he returned to England in 1959, he appeared in Stratford-upon-Avon productions of A Midsummer Night's Dream, and King Lear. Later film appearances include O. Henry's Full House (1952), Hobson's Choice (1954), Witness for the Prosecution (1957) (which gave him another Oscar nomination), Spartacus (1960) and Advise and Consent (1962).

    Laughton was married from 1929 to his death to actress Elsa Lanchester, with whom he occasionally appeared. His direction of the film The Night Is a Hunter (1955) is critically acclaimed.

    Was a great collector of modern art and all things Japanese.

  • The Night of the Hunter UK Dvd


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