Peter Vaughan

Last updated

Peter Vaughan
Peter Vaughan.jpg
Born
Peter Ewart Ohm

(1923-04-04)4 April 1923
Wem, Shropshire, England
Died6 December 2016(2016-12-06) (aged 93)
Education Uttoxeter Grammar School
OccupationActor
Years active1931–2016
Spouse(s)

Peter Vaughan (born Peter Ewart Ohm; 4 April 1923 – 6 December 2016) was an English character actor known for many supporting roles in British film and television productions. [1] He also acted extensively on the stage.

Contents

He is perhaps best known for his role as Grouty in the sitcom Porridge and its 1979 film adaptation. Other parts included a recurring role alongside Robert Lindsay in the sitcom Citizen Smith , Tom Hedden in Straw Dogs , Winston the Ogre in Time Bandits , Tom Franklin in Chancer and Mr. Stevens, Sr. in The Remains of the Day . His final role was as Maester Aemon in HBO's Game of Thrones (2011–2015).

Early life

Vaughan was born Peter Ewart Ohm [2] on 4 April 1923 [3] in Wem, Shropshire, [4] the son of a bank clerk, Max Ohm, who was an Austrian immigrant, [5] and Eva Wright, a nurse. [6] The family later moved to Wellington, in the same county, where he began his schooling. Vaughan said that while reciting a poem at infant school in Wellington he first experienced the applause and admiration coming from a good performance. [7] From the age of seven he lived in Staffordshire, [8] where he attended Uttoxeter Grammar School. [6]

After leaving school, Vaughan joined the Wolverhampton Repertory Theatre, and gained experience in other repertory theatres as well, before army service during the Second World War. He was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Royal Corps of Signals on 9 June 1943, [9] and served in Normandy, Belgium, and the Far East. [3] [10] At the end of the war, Vaughan was in Singapore during the liberation of Changi Prison. [6]

Career

Vaughan made his film debut in 1959 in an uncredited role as a police officer in The 39 Steps . [6] He continued for several years to play small parts, including more cameos as policemen in Village of the Damned and The Victors, before gaining his first starring role, in a minor picture called Smokescreen (1964), where he played an insurance assessor investigating a businessman’s disappearance in one of the last, and best, of the old-style British B-movies. [6] In 1967, he received second billing opposite Frank Sinatra in the film The Naked Runner . His performance was not well received by critics who accused him of overacting in his role as a British agent. [11] He played Mr. Freeman in Karel Reisz's 1980 The French Lieutenant's Woman , alongside Meryl Streep and Jeremy Irons. [12]

Possibly Vaughan’s highest-profile film performance was as the father of Anthony Hopkins's character in The Remains of the Day (1993). [13] He was also cast in Terry Gilliam's The Man Who Killed Don Quixote , but had not shot any material before that project was abandoned. He had previously appeared for Gilliam in Time Bandits and Brazil . Vaughan appeared as a menacing character in Straw Dogs (1971), and with Bill Murray in a film of W. Somerset Maugham's novel The Razor's Edge in 1984. In 1996, he appeared as Giles Corey in The Crucible , and in 1997 he appeared alongside Robert Carlyle and Ray Winstone in Face . In 1998, Vaughan played Bishop Myriel in Les Misérables, alongside Liam Neeson. His most unusual role may have been as SS Obergruppenführer Arthur Nebe in the 1994 film of Robert Harris's novel Fatherland .[ citation needed ]

He appeared in the music video for Kate Bush's song "Experiment IV".[ citation needed ]

Television

Vaughan became known for his performances on television, including supporting roles in Porridge (as "Genial" Harry Grout) and Citizen Smith as Charles Johnson (his role in the latter series was taken over by Tony Steedman). His role in Porridge brought him a great deal of public recognition despite his character appearing in only three episodes and in the 1979 film of the series. [14] In 1975, he appeared as Tony Kirby in an episode of the hard hitting police drama The Sweeney entitled Stay Lucky, Eh?

He also appeared as "The Fence" in the well known humorous advert for McVities Fruit Shortcake biscuits along with Harry Fowler.

In 1969, Vaughan appeared in Randall and Hopkirk in the episode "Never Trust a Ghost". In the same year, he starred in the thirteen-part London Weekend Television TV series The Gold Robbers. In December 1972, he appeared as Mr. Paxton in the BBC television adaptation of the M.R. James ghost story A Warning to the Curious , [6] shown as part of their annual series A Ghost Story for Christmas . [15] ' In September 1973, he appeared as Quinn in the London Weekend Television TV series The Protectors, in an episode called 'Quinn'.

Vaughan starred as Billy Fox in the Thames Television series Fox (1980). [6] The saga was written by Trevor Preston, directed by Jim Goddard, and produced by Verity Lambert. Other Fox family members were played by Elizabeth Spriggs, Ray Winstone, Larry Lamb, and Bernard Hill. Historical roles Vaughan played include those of Russian foreign minister Alexander Izvolsky in the serial Fall of Eagles (1974), British politician Thomas Inskip in the mini-series Winston Churchill: The Wilderness Years (1981), the title role in A Last Visitor for Mr. Hugh Peter (1981), and German Nazi figures Kurt Zeitzler in the miniseries War and Remembrance (1988) and Hermann Göring in the Granada Television-PBS docu-drama Countdown to War (1989). He also appeared in many literary adaptations, such as Bleak House (BBC, 1985), in which he played the sinister lawyer Mr. Tulkinghorn, and Our Mutual Friend (BBC Two, 1998). Other television work includes the espionage thriller Codename: Kyril (1988), in a lead role as the head of the KGB.[ citation needed ]

In 1986, Vaughan appeared in the promotional video for Kate Bush's "Experiment IV" single. In 1991, he played John Turner in an episode of Granada Television's The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes titled '"The Boscombe Valley Mystery".[ citation needed ]

He also appeared in the BBC production of Alan Aykbourn's play 'Season's Greetings' which was broadcast at Christmas 1986, and repeated on BBC 2 some years later. He played the role of Uncle Harvey.


Vaughan later attained particular acclaim for his supporting role as the Alzheimer's sufferer Felix Hutchinson in Our Friends in the North (BBC Two, 1996), a role that garnered a Best Actor nomination at the 1997 British Academy Television Awards. [16] He played the clockmaker George Graham in Longitude , the TV drama adaptation of Dava Sobel's eponymous non-fiction novel about the quest for a means to determine longitude at sea. In 2007 he starred in the television series Mobile, and as Uncle Alfie in the film Death at a Funeral . [17] In 2011 Vaughan starred as Michael Dodd in the BBC courtroom drama Silk . [18] His final role, between 2011 and 2015, was Maester Aemon in the HBO series Game of Thrones . [19] [20]

Radio

Vaughan was heard as Superintendent Kirk in the BBC dramatisation of Dorothy L. Sayers' Peter Wimsey novel Busman's Honeymoon, and as Denethor in the 1981 BBC Radio production of The Lord of the Rings . [6] He played Charles Augustus Milverton in a 1993 BBC radio dramatization of the Sherlock Holmes short story. [21]

Stage

Vaughan's first breakout role was in 1964 as Ed in Joe Orton's work Entertaining Mr Sloane performed at Wyndham's Theatre. [6]

Personal life and death

The first of Vaughan's two marriages was to Billie Whitelaw, whom he married in 1952 and divorced in 1966. [3] [6] His second wife was actress Lillias Walker, with whom he lived in the village of Mannings Heath, in West Sussex, until his death, having previously lived in Crawley. [22] His stepdaughter Victoria Burton (actress and producer) is married to Gregor Fisher. [23]

Vaughan was partially blind in his old age. On 6 December 2016, he died peacefully of natural causes at the age of 93. [24] [25]

Filmography

Vaughan appeared in the following films and television series: [1]

Related Research Articles

Eric Sykes English writer and actor

Eric Sykes was an English radio, stage, television and film writer, comedian, actor, and director whose performing career spanned more than 50 years. He frequently wrote for and performed with many other leading comedy performers and writers of the period, including Tony Hancock, Spike Milligan, Tommy Cooper, Peter Sellers, John Antrobus, and Johnny Speight. Sykes first came to prominence through his many radio credits as a writer and actor in the 1950s, most notably through his collaboration on The Goon Show scripts. He became a TV star in his own right in the early 1960s when he appeared with Hattie Jacques in several popular BBC comedy television series.

<i>Porridge</i> (1974 TV series) British 1970s TV sitcom

Porridge is a British sitcom, starring Ronnie Barker and Richard Beckinsale, written by Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais, and broadcast on BBC1 from 1974 to 1977. The programme ran for three series, and included two Christmas specials and a feature film of the same name.

Steven Moffat Scottish television writer and producer

Steven William Moffat is a Scottish television writer, television producer and screenwriter. He is best known for his work as showrunner, writer, and executive producer of the science fiction television series Doctor Who and the contemporary crime drama television series Sherlock, based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes stories. In 2015, Moffat was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire for his services to drama.

Martin Freeman English actor

Martin John Christopher Freeman is an English actor. Among other accolades, he has won an Emmy Award, a BAFTA Award and a Screen Actors Guild Award, and has been nominated for a Golden Globe Award.

Mark Gatiss British actor, screenwriter and novelist

Mark Gatiss is an English actor, comedian, screenwriter, director, producer and novelist. His work includes writing for and acting in the television series Doctor Who, Sherlock, and Dracula. Together with Reece Shearsmith, Steve Pemberton and Jeremy Dyson, he is a member of the comedy team The League of Gentlemen. He played Tycho Nestoris in the HBO series Game of Thrones.

Kelly Macdonald Scottish actress

Kelly Macdonald is a Scottish actress best known for her roles in Trainspotting (1996), Gosford Park (2001), Intermission (2003), Nanny McPhee (2005), No Country for Old Men (2007), Boardwalk Empire (2010–2014), Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 (2011), Brave (2012), the Black Mirror episode "Hated in the Nation" (2016), The Victim (2019) and Line of Duty, season 6 (2021).

Thomas Brodie-Sangster English actor

Thomas Brodie-Sangster, also credited as Thomas Sangster, is an English actor. He is known for playing Sam in Love Actually (2003), Simon in Nanny McPhee (2005), Ferb in Phineas and Ferb (2007–2015), Jojen Reed in Game of Thrones (2013–2014), Newt in the Maze Runner film series (2014–2018), and Benny Watts in the Netflix miniseries The Queen's Gambit (2020), for which he was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie.

Geoffrey Bayldon English actor

Albert Geoffrey Bayldon was an English actor. After playing roles in many stage productions, including the works of William Shakespeare, he became known for portraying the title role of the children's series Catweazle (1970–71). Bayldon's other long-running parts include the Crowman in Worzel Gummidge (1979–81) and Magic Grandad in the BBC television series Watch (1995).

Clive Russell Scottish actor

Clive Russell is a Scottish actor. He is known for his roles as Chief Inspector Frederick Abberline in Ripper Street, Angus O'Connor in Happiness and Brynden Tully in the HBO series Game of Thrones.

Colin Abel Jeavons is a retired British television actor.

Oliver Ford Davies English actor

Oliver Robert Ford Davies is an English actor and writer, best known for his extensive theatre work, and to a broader audience for his role as Sio Bibble in Star Wars Episodes I to III. He is also known for his role as Maester Cressen in HBO series Game of Thrones.

The stories of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle were very popular as adaptations for the stage, and later film, and still later television. The four-volumes of the Universal Sherlock Holmes (1995) compiled by Ronald B. De Waal lists over 25,000 Holmes-related productions and products. They include the original writings, "together with the translations of these tales into sixty-three languages, plus Braille and shorthand, the writings about the Writings or higher criticism, writings about Sherlockians and their societies, memorials and memorabilia, games, puzzles and quizzes, phonograph records, audio and video tapes, compact discs, laser discs, ballets, films, musicals, operettas, oratorios, plays, radio and television programs, parodies and pastiches, children's books, cartoons, comics, and a multitude of other items — from advertisements to wine — that have accumulated throughout the world on the two most famous characters in literature."

Charles Gray (actor) English actor

Charles Gray was an English actor who was well known for roles including the arch-villain Ernst Stavro Blofeld in the James Bond film Diamonds Are Forever, Dikko Henderson in a previous Bond film, You Only Live Twice, and Sherlock Holmes's brother Mycroft Holmes in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.

Edmund Jeremy James Walker, known professionally as Jeremy Kemp, was an English actor. He was known for his significant roles in the miniseries The Winds of War and War and Remembrance, the film The Blue Max, and the TV series Z-Cars.

Clive Francis is a British stage, television and film actor.

Owen Teale Welsh actor

Owen Teale is a Welsh character actor known for his role as Ser Alliser Thorne in the HBO fantasy TV series Game of Thrones.

Norman Jones (actor)

Norman Jones was an English actor, primarily on television. He appeared in three Doctor Who serials — The Abominable Snowmen, Doctor Who and the Silurians and The Masque of Mandragora.

Joseph Daniel Turner Mawle is an English actor. Mawle is best known for his roles as Benjen Stark in Game of Thrones, Detective Inspector Jedediah Shine in Ripper Street, Firebrace in Birdsong, Jesus Christ in The Passion and Odysseus in Troy: Fall of a City.

<i>Sherlock</i> (TV series) British crime drama television series

Sherlock is a British mystery crime drama television series based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes detective stories. Created by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, it stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman as Doctor John Watson. Thirteen episodes have been produced, with four three-part series airing from 2010 to 2017 and a special episode that aired on 1 January 2016. The series is set in the present day, while the one-off special features a Victorian period fantasy resembling the original Holmes stories. Sherlock is produced by the British network BBC, along with Hartswood Films, with Moffat, Gatiss, Sue Vertue and Rebecca Eaton serving as executive producers. The series is supported by the American station WGBH-TV Boston for its Masterpiece anthology series on PBS, where it also airs in the United States. The series is primarily filmed in Cardiff, Wales, with North Gower Street in London used for exterior shots of Holmes and Watson's 221B Baker Street residence.

"The Gift" is the seventh episode of the fifth season of HBO's fantasy television series Game of Thrones, and the 47th overall. The episode was written by the series' creators David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, and directed by Miguel Sapochnik, his directorial debut for the series.

References

  1. 1 2 "Peter Vaughan". British Film Institute. Retrieved 7 December 2016.
  2. "FindMyPast record of birth" . Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  3. 1 2 3 "'Game of Thrones' Actor Peter Vaughan Dies At Age 93". Yahoo! News . Sunnyvale, California: Yahoo!. 6 December 2016. Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  4. "Peter Vaughan Biography (1923–)". filmreference.com. Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  5. Peter Vaughan obituary The Guardian, 6 December 2016. Retrieved 7 December 2016.
  6. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 "Obituary: Peter Vaughan". BBC News . 6 December 2016. Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  7. "Thrones star, 93, launches memoirs. County-born actor tells how performing bug bit him at school". Shropshire Star. 4 July 2016. p. 16.Report by Mat Growcott.
  8. "Peter Vaughan: Acting Clever", Shropshire Magazine, November 2007 Archived 26 May 2008 at the Wayback Machine . Accessed 22 December 2014
  9. "No. 36080". The London Gazette (Supplement). 2 July 1943. p. 3050.
  10. "Obituary: Peter Vaughan". BBC News. 6 December 2016. Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  11. Variety Staff (31 December 1966). "Review: 'The Naked Runner'". Variety . Los Angeles: Penske Media Corporation . Retrieved 30 June 2013.
  12. Vincent Canby (18 September 1981). "'THE FRENCH LIEUTENANT'S WOMAN'". NYTimes.
  13. "'There are unfortunately a lot of us old guys around'". The Spectator . United Kingdom: Press Holdings. 31 October 2007. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  14. "Game of Thrones star Peter Vaughan is still best known for being Porridge's Grouty – Sunday Post". sundaypost.com. 22 June 2016. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  15. Angelini, Sergio, A Warning to the Curious at the BFI 's Screenonline. Retrieved 2010-7-7.
  16. MacDonald, Marianne (16 March 1966). "A hard act to follow". The Independent . London: Independent News & Media (1997–2010). Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  17. Berardinelli, James. "Death at a Funeral | Reelviews Movie Reviews". Reelviews Movie Reviews. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  18. "PBS Masterpiece Review: Silk Episode One". www.bestbritishtv.com. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  19. "Shropshire's Game of Thrones star Peter Vaughan still game « Shropshire Star". www.shropshirestar.com. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  20. "Game of Thrones? 'It's a hard act to follow' ..." www.wscountytimes.co.uk. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  21. "The BBC audio complete Sherlock Holmes".
  22. Page, Sarah (10 April 2017). "Legendary actor to be immortalised at Sussex pub". West Sussex County Times. Retrieved 15 February 2019.
  23. "Stepdaughter". IMDb. IMDb. Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  24. "Peter Vaughan: Thrones and Porridge star dies at 93". BBC News. 6 December 2016. Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  25. "Peter Vaughan, star of Game of Thrones and Porridge, dies aged 93". The Daily Telegraph . London. 6 December 2016. Retrieved 6 December 2016.