For decades Rex Harrison was the king of the English stage. MY FAIR LADY immortalised his persona, the epitome of the English gentleman. But beneath those easy manners and cool wit lurked a tyrannical egoism. Rex always needed a woman beside him and he married six times; both Carole Landis, a young starlet, and Rachel Roberts, the actress who was his fourth wife, committed suicide. Alexander Walker traces the public and private life of this brilliant actor, from his genteel beginnings in the suburbs of Liverpool through hard graft and triumph on the English stage, to a prurient Hollywood from which scandal forced him to flee. Drawing on unpublished sources, on conversations with Rex Harrison, and on interviews with Harrison's closest family and friends, Walker brilliantly portrays Rex Harrison, the greatest high-comedy actor of his generation, and Rex Harrison, the incomparable despot.
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Alexander Walker is the author of over twenty books about the cinema and its stars, including bestselling biographies of Elizabeth Taylor, Vivien Leigh, Joan Crawford, Bette Davis, Peter Sellers and Audrey Hepburn. He has also written standard works on the coming of the Talkies, a monograph on Stanley Kubrick, and the fullest account to date of the British film industr from 1960 to 1985. He has been the London "Evening Standard's" influential film critic since 1960 and has been named "Critic of the Year" three times in the British Press Awards. A prolific broadcaster on television and radio, he wrote and narrated four series of "Film Star" for the BBC. Alexander Walker was born in Ireland, and educated there, on the Continent and in the United States.From Kirkus Reviews :
Top-drawer, custom-tailored life of actor Rex Harrison, whose charm dynamited many a lady's heart while his towering tongue whipped her. By far the best of Walker's many books (Garbo, Dietrich, Elizabeth, etc.) and the best about Harrison (including the actor's own amusing but lightweight autobiography A Damned Serious Business, 1991), this presents itself in finely cut anecdotes and textured language that Harrison himself might have admired. Like Cary Grant, Harrison (1908-90) grew into his stage and screen persona so remarkably that one forgets he was not always a lady- killing swine--though he did take to acting at age four and became a monocle-wearing fop at 18. Harrison also took to girls very early, and as a child liked swimming nude in secret with a girl neighbor. He distanced himself from his father, modelling himself on his mother. Harrison played endless walk-ons and minor roles with the Liverpool Repertory Theatre, and he began imitating the casual by-play of ``personality actors'' who could dominate the stage no matter how bad their lines. Movie bits led to film and stage leads and at last to the film version of Shaw's Major Barbara. Harrison was never a light comedian, always playing high comedy, and Shaw became the centerpost of a career crowned by his role in Heartbreak House: The actor cared little for his films. His love life and six wives take up major space here, along with the suicides of lover Carol Landis and ex-wife Rachel Roberts, his cruelly rampant infidelities, and the glory of his unshakable snobbery. Tyrannosaurus Rex, tricked out in imperial purple. (B&w illustrations--not seen) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Description du livre Orion, 2002. Paperback. État : New. Never used!. N° de réf. du libraire P110752849018