Saturday, 13 April 2013

Britain is still a country for and says "Happy Birthday" to that old, upper class and English actor with a stiff upper lip, Edward Fox

The actor Edward Fox is 76 years old today.

A man who has a 'stiff upper lip' displays fortitude in the face of adversity and exercises great self-restraint in the expression of emotion. When the upper lip quivers, it is one of the first signs that the person is scared or experiencing deep emotion, The phrase became symbolic of those men who were products of the English public school system in the 1900's, during the Victorian era. Educated at Harrow School, then serving as a lieutenant in the Coldstream Guards, Edward acquired his 'stiff upper lip' in his youth and it has served him well in a long career in films in which he has played an assortment of British military characters. On the stage at the moment, he is playing Winston Churchill who was also educated at Harrow and left to start a military career which, like Edward, he did not complete, in his case leaving it for politics rather than the stage.

What you possibly didn't know about Edward, that he :

* had a father, Robin, who was a theatrical agent, a mother, Angela Muriel Darita, who was an actress and writer and an elder brother, James, an actor.

* after the Guards, attended the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and worked in repertory theatre before his first film appearance as an extra in 'The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner' (left) in 1962 and as a barman (right) in 'This Sporting Life' in 1963.

* in the 1960s he worked mostly on stage, including a turn as 'Hamlet' and then established himself with roles in major British films including 'Oh! What a Lovely War' (left) and 'Battle of Britain' (right) in 1969
and as a war veteran in 'The Go-Between' in 1970 and won a BAFTA for 'best supporting actor' (left).

* came to the attention of director Fred Zinneman who was looking for an actor who wasn't well-known and could be believable as the assassin in his 'The Day of the Jackal' and won the role, beating the other contenders, Roger Moore and Michael Caine.
The trailer :
Shooting melons :

* appeared in 'A Bridge Too Far' in 1977 as Lieutenant General Horrocks, a role he has cited as a personal favourite and for which he won the Best Supporting Actor award at the British Academy Film Awards.

* portrayed King Edward VIII in the television drama, 'Edward and Mrs. Simpson' in 1978.

* in 'Gandhi' in 1982, portrayed Brigadier-General Reginald Dyer, responsible for the Amritsar Massacre in India.

* has continued to work on the London stage and in 2010 performed in a one-man show, 'An Evening with Anthony Trollope' at the age of 73.

* this year replaced Robert Hardy as Winston Churchill in the premiere of 'The Audience' after Robert had to withdraw for health reasons.

Film tribute :

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