in Take a Chance (1937)
Philip Arthur Reeves
29 May 1893
|Died||5 December 1971 78) (aged|
|Other names||P. Kynaston Reeves|
Philip Arthur Reeves (29 May 1893 –5 December 1971) , known professionally as Kynaston Reeves, was an English character actor who appeared in numerous films and many television plays and series.
Reeves was born in London on 29 May 1893 and was the first of two sons of Arthur Robert Reeves (born 1855) and Clarissa Mary Kynaston (b. 1864). His brother was John Edward.
He was married to the Australian Jewish stage actress Paula Sabina. They had two children, Thomas and Suzanne.
Philip Arthur Reeves, professionally known as P. Kynaston Reeves or Kynaston Reeves, took his mother's maiden name as a middle namewhen commencing his film career with a small part in the 1931 film Many Waters, before dispensing with the prefixed initial. He believed that having a name that reminded directors of the famous actor Edward Kynaston would help him to get work. In 1932, he progressed to a supporting role, playing an editor called Bob Mitchell alongside Ivor Novello and Jack Hawkins in The Lodger (renamed The Phantom Fiend in 1935).
After playing the Reverend Edmund Ovington opposite Otto Kruger in the 1938 film, Housemaster,Reeves developed a speciality for portraying authority figures, such as judges, doctors, professors and clergymen.
Television was to provide a valuable source of income. In 1950, Reeves was invited to voice the character of Mr Growser in a BBC Television children's show, The Cruise of The Toytown Belle.
This led to further work for the children's department at the BBC, namely in adaptations of Shakespeare's The Tempest (as Alonso, King of Naples) and Philip Wade's Jenny Meade (as Mr Steele), both produced in 1951.
Reeves was then offered one of his most notable acting parts on television, namely that of Henry Quelch, form master to the 'Fat Owl of the Remove', Billy Bunter, in the long-running television series Billy Bunter of Greyfriars School . He recorded six episodes in 1952, after which fellow actors Raf De La Torre, John Woodnutt and Jack Melford began sharing the portrayal of this supporting character. Making just a single episode in 1954 ("Bunter Won't Go"), Reeves then returned to reprise the performance for two more episodes in 1956, and a further four in 1957, following which he gave up the role.
This did not end his involvement with BBC productions however, and in 1958 he appeared in the six-part project Leave It To Todhunter (based on the 1937 book "Trial and Error" by Anthony Berkeley), playing Ambrose Chitterwick in an episode called "In Search Of A Corpse".
In 1959 he played the Duke of Omnium in all six episodes of another series from the BBC, The Eustace Diamonds , adapted from the novel by Anthony Trollope about the London society scandal caused in the 19th century when a diamond necklace goes missing.
In 1962, he starred as Thomas Crawford in the Broadway play The Affair .
In a rare outing for ABC television, he took the part of Major General Goddard in a 1966 episode of The Avengers TV series, entitled "What the Butler Saw" and starring Patrick Macnee and Diana Rigg,but would go on to play an entirely different character called Dickens in the 1968 screening of "Legacy Of Death", by which time Linda Thorson was portraying John Steed's female sidekick.
Reeves also appeared in seven of 26 episodes of the classic BBC television series The Forsyte Saga , broadcast in early 1967, playing Nicholas Forsyte.
He could be seen throughout the 1960s in a variety of other popular productions, such as the police serial No Hiding Place , drama anthologies Armchair Theatre and The Wednesday Play and as "The Minister" in an episode of Patrick McGoohan's The Prisoner television series.
Reeves' film career continued in parallel with his small screen contributions, and in 1941 he had portrayed Lord Stanley to John Gielgud's Disraeli in the biographical treatment The Prime Minister .In 1948 he played Dr Chawner in the Peter Ustinov tour de force Vice Versa (Ustinov having written, co-produced and directed it), and in the same year he appeared as the Lord Chief Justice of the High Court in The Winslow Boy , which starred Robert Donat. In 1950 he revisited the subject of Disraeli in the film The Mudlark , when he took the part of General Sir Henry Ponsonby in the story of a street urchin (or "mudlark") who is found in Windsor Castle attempting to talk to Queen Victoria. This time, Disraeli is played by Alec Guinness.
In 1957, he took the role of Professor Walgate in the science fiction B film Fiend Without a Face , whose hero was played by Marshall Thompson, and whose plot had Canada attacked by mutated caterpillar-like creatures made of human spines and brains.During a period of steady cinematic work, he also found time to portray a "testy old millionaire" in Carry On Regardless in 1961.
A year before his death in 1971, he made both his final television appearance and his last film. In a dramatic enactment during an edition of the BBC arts magazine Omnibus , he took the part of French painter Renoir in a piece entitled "A Requiem for Modigliani", describing the final part of the Italian artist's life, and his love affairs.And in the cinema, he fulfilled a small role in The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes , the 1970 film which starred Robert Stephens and Geneviève Page.
Reeves died of cerebral thrombosis in Lewisham, London, at the age of 78.
Gerald Theron Campion was an English actor best remembered for his role as Billy Bunter in a 1950s television adaptation of books by Frank Richards.
Valentine Dyall was an English character actor. His distinctive voice made him especially popular as a voice actor, and he was known for many years as "The Man in Black", the narrator of the BBC Radio horror series Appointment with Fear.
Laurence Naismith was an English actor. He made numerous film and television appearances, including starring roles in the musical films Scrooge (1970) and the children's ghost film The Amazing Mr Blunden (1972). He also had memorable roles as Captain Edward Smith of the RMS Titanic in A Night to Remember (1958), the First Sea Lord in Sink the Bismarck! (1960), and Argus in Jason and the Argonauts (1963).
Cecil Parker was an English character and comedy actor with a distinctively husky voice, who usually played supporting roles, often characters with a supercilious demeanour, in his 91 films made between 1928 and 1969.
Wilfrid Hyde-White was an English character actor of stage, film and television, who achieved international recognition in his later years for his role as Colonel Pickering in the film version of the musical My Fair Lady (1964).
Jack Stanley Watling was an English actor.
Richard Evelyn Vernon was an English actor. He appeared in many feature films and television programmes, often in aristocratic or supercilious roles. Prematurely balding and greying, Vernon settled into playing archetypal middle-aged lords and military types while still in his 30s.
William Finlay Jefferson Currie was a Scottish actor of stage, screen, and television. He received great acclaim for his roles as Abel Magwitch in the British film Great Expectations (1946) and as Balthazar in the American film Ben-Hur (1959).
Leslie Gilbert Dwyer was an English film and television character actor.
Colin Gordon was a British actor born in Ceylon.
Barry Jones was an actor seen in British and American films, on American television and on the stage.
Raymond Lovell was a Canadian-born film actor who performed in British films. He mainly played supporting roles, often somewhat pompous characters.
George Woodbridge was an English character actor in theatre, films and television from the 1930s to the 1970s. Born in Exeter, Devon, his ruddy-cheeked complexion and West Country accent meant he often played publicans, policemen or yokels, most prominently in horror and comedy films.
Noel Howlett was an English actor, principally remembered as the incompetent headmaster, Morris Cromwell, in the ITV 1970s cult television programme Please Sir!. He was the subject of infatuation by Deputy Head Doris Ewell, played by Joan Sanderson.
Andrew John Maxton Cruickshank MBE was a Scottish supporting actor, most famous for his portrayal of Dr Cameron in the long-running UK BBC television series Dr. Finlay's Casebook, which ran for 191 episodes from 1962 until 1971.
Aubrey Mather was an English character actor.
Peter Stephens was an English stage, film and television supporting actor, notable for his portrayal of the Bunteresque character Cyril in the Doctor Who serial The Celestial Toymaker. He was also the director of one film during his career.
The Lodger is a 1932 British thriller film directed by Maurice Elvey, and starring Ivor Novello, Elizabeth Allan, and Jack Hawkins. It is based on the 1913 novel The Lodger by Marie Belloc Lowndes, also filmed by Alfred Hitchcock in 1927 ; by John Brahm in 1944; by Hugo Fregonese, as Man in the Attic, in 1953; and by David Ondaatje in 2009.
Martin Wyldeck was an English actor who played a wide range of parts over many years on stage, screen and TV. He also appeared in the first episode of the TV series Fawlty Towers, as Sir Richard Morris.
Billy Bunter of Greyfriars School is a BBC Television show broadcast from 1952 to 1961. It was based on the Greyfriars School stories, written by author Charles Hamilton under the pen name Frank Richards. Hamilton also wrote all of the scripts for the television show.