Sunday, December 15, 2013

Peter O'Toole Passes Away


Peter O'Toole, one of the greatest actors of all time, died today at the age of 81.  O'Toole's most famous role was unquestionably one of the greatest films of all time, Lawrence of Arabia, in which he played TE Lawrence.  O'Toole was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor 8 times:  Lawrence of Arabia (1962), Becket (1964), The Lion in Winter (1968), Goodbye Mr. Chips (1969), The Ruling Class (1972), The Stunt Man (1980), My Favorite Year (1983) and most recently in 2007 for Venus.  In 2003, The Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences awarded him an honorary Oscar for his entire body of work. Initially he refused as he still felt he had many years left, but eventually graciously accepted the award on the Oscars telecast that was presented to him by Meryl Streep.  

O'Toole's first screen work was in an episode of "The Scarlet Pimpernel" in 1956. From there he went on to a legendary career that included: Lawrence of Arabia (BAFTA for Best Actor), Becket (Golden Globe Best Actor), Lord Jim (1965), What's New Pussycat? (1965), The Sandpiper (1965), How to Steal a Million (1966), The Bible (1966), Casino Royale (1967), The Lion in Winter (1968, Golden Globe Best Actor), Goodbye Mr. Chips (1969, Golden Globe Best Actor), The Ruling Class (1972, National Board of Review Best Actor), Man of La Mancha (1972, National Board of Review Best Actor), Caligula (1979), The Stunt Man (1980, National Society of Film Critics Best Actor), My Favorite Year (1982), Pygmalion (1983), The Last Emperor (1987), Joan of Arc (1999, Emmy Best Actor), Troy (2004), Venus (2006) and Stardust (2007). He also played the Pope in a recurring role on "The Tudors" and was the voice of snooty critic Anton Ego in the Pixar film Ratatouille

R.I.P.
Peter O'Toole
1932-2013

His Essential Films:

LAWRENCE OF ARABIA
1962
David Lean
Role: T.E. Lawrence

An epic about British officer T.E. Lawrence’s mission to aid the Arab tribes in their revolt against the Ottoman Empire during the First World War.

BECKET
1964
Peter Glenville
Role: King Henry II

King Henry II of England has trouble with the Church. When the Archbishop of Canterbury dies, he has a brilliant idea. Rather than appoint another pious cleric loyal to Rome and the Church, he will appoint his old drinking and wenching buddy, Thomas Becket, technically a deacon of the church, to the post. Unfortunately, Becket takes the job seriously and provides abler opposition to Henry.

HOW TO STEAL A MILLION
1966
William Wyler
Role: Simon Dermott

A woman must steal a statue from a Paris museum to help conceal her father’s art forgeries.

THE LION IN WINTER
1968
Anthony Harvey
Role: King Henry II

1183 AD: King Henry II’s three sons all want to inherit the throne, but he won’t commit to a choice.

THE STUNT MAN
1980
Richard Rush
Role: Eli Cross

While on the run from the police, Steve Railsback hides in a group of moviemakers where he pretends to be a stunt man. Both aided and endangered by the director (Peter O’Toole) he avoids both the police and sudden death as a stuntman.

THE LAST EMPEROR
1987
Bernardo Bertolucci
Role: Reginal Flemming Johnson

A dramatic history of Pu Yi, the last of the Emperors of China, from his lofty birth and brief reign in the Forbidden City, the object of worship by half a billion people; through his abdication, his decline and dissolute lifestyle; his exploitation by the invading Japanese, and finally to his obscure existence as just another peasant worker in the People’s Republic

RATATOUILLE
2009
Brad Bird, Jan Pinkava
Role: Anton Ego

Anton Ego is the snooty food critic that receives a shock when he sees who is truly cooking his food.

Other Notable Films:
THE SAVAGE INNOCENTS (1960)
CASINO ROYALE (1967)
THE RULING CLASS (1972)
CALIGULA (1979)
MY FAVORITE YEAR (1982)
SUPERGIRL (1984)
PHANTOMS (1998)
TROY (2004)
VENUS (2006)
STARDUST (2007)

Featured Post

The 2019 Essential Film Awards

Celebrating the cinematic achievements of 2018. Official 2018 Selections ___________________ Best Film - Dram...