The creator of the "Hunchback of Notre Dame", "Henry VIII" and "Captain Bligh", Charles Laughton's career spans 50 films and 40 stage roles. This entralling biography follows him from his parents' hotel in Scarborough to his climactic assumption of the role of King Lear in Statford at the end of his life. Along the way we meet a galaxy of ...
The creator of the "Hunchback of Notre Dame", "Henry VIII" and "Captain Bligh", Charles Laughton's career spans 50 films and 40 stage roles. This entralling biography follows him from his parents' hotel in Scarborough to his climactic assumption of the role of King Lear in Statford at the end of his life. Along the way we meet a galaxy of Hollywood greats - from Korda, Hitchcock and Billy WIlder to Gregory Peck, Robert Mitchum and Marilyn Monroe. We also discover a hugely talented and complex man - a legend in his own lifetime who nonetheless counted himself a failure.
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Publishers Weekly, 1988-02-26 Callow, who portrayed Mozart in the play Amadeus, seems to have studied every extant foot of Laughton film, read everything printed about the actor and to have talked at length with a great many people who knew him well. The result is a fully realized portrait of an intellectually and temperamentally complex man and at the same time an illuminating analysis of the art and craft of acting itself. Callow's enthusiasm is infectious: readers will wish to see, or see again, The Private Life of Henry VIII, Mutiny on the Bounty, The Hunchback of Notre Dame and many other movies in which Laughton appeared, including Abbott and Costello Meet Captain Kidda low point in his career but nonetheless a great performance, according to Callow. Laughton's odd 30-year marriage to Elsa Lanchester and his homosexuality are sympathetically discussed, along with his fortuitous associations with Bertolt Brecht, producer Paul Gregory, Robert Mitchum and other relationships not so fortuitous. This is a theater biography of the first rank, written with elegance, wit and psychological probity. Photos. (April) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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