Star Archive

Richard Attenborough (1923 - 2014)

Few actors have lead such a charmed life as Richard Attenborough. His career started quickly, and over sixty years has trundled on from one success to another. Of course, there have been plenty of flops in those sixty years; but none of them have derailed his career. He's even turned successfully to directing, as his Oscar for Ghandi shows.

He was born in Cambridge and grew up in Leicester where his father was head of the local college. He was bitten by the acting bug fairly early and went to RADA on a scholarship. After a couple of small roles in films he hit the big time with the stage adaptation of Brighton Rock (which did co-star Dulcie Gray no harm either).

His war service was spent in the RAF, mostly in their film unit. There he took the lead role in Journey Together. While in the RAF he found time to marry his fellow RADA student Sheila Sim.

On demob, he took up his career where he left it. After a few more cameo roles, he became a star with the film version of Brighton Rock. From that point on there was a steady procession of cowardly spivs and war heroes, with a couple of years in the original production of The Mousetrap to leaven the mix.

As the sixties opened he moved into production and from there into directing. His years of trying to get a biopic of Ghandi off the ground finally paid off, and it's probable that it's this he'll be best remembered for.

Photo of Richard Attenborough in The Man WithinPhoto of Richard Attenborough in The Man WithinPoster for Brighton RockRichard Attenborough on the set of The Guinea PigRichard Attenborough on the cover of the Boys in Brown pressbook 

Filmography (as actor unless otherwise stated):

1942 In Which We Serve
1942 Schweik's New Adventures
1943 The Hundred Pound Window
1943 Journey Together
1946 A Matter of Life and Death
1946 School for Secrets
1947 The Man Within
1947 Dancing With Crime
1947 Brighton Rock
1948 London Belongs to Me
1949 The Guinea Pig
1950 The Lost People
1950 Boys in Brown
1950 Morning Departure
1951 Hell is Sold Out
1951 The Magic Box
1952 The Gift Horse
1953 Father's Doing Fine
1954 Eight O'Clock Walk
1954 The Ship that Died of Shame
1955 Private's Progress
1956 The Baby and the Battleship
1956 Brothers in Law
1958 The Scamp
1958 Dunkirk
1958 The Man Upstairs
1958 Danger Within
1958 I'm All Right Jack
1958 Sea of Sand
1959 Jetstorm
1959 SOS Pacific
1960 The Angry Silence (+ prod)
1960 The League of Gentlemen (+ prod)
1962 Only Two Can Play
1962 Whistle Down the Wind (prod only)
1962 The Dock Brief
1962 All Night Long
1963 The Great Escape (US)
1964 Seance on a Wet Afternoon (+ prod)
1964 The Third Secret
1964 The Guns at Batasi
1965 The Flight of the Phoenix (US)
1966 The Sand Pebbles (US)
1967 Doctor Dolittle
1968 The Bliss of Mrs Blossom
1968 The Last Grenade
1968 Only When I Larf
1969 Oh What a Lovely War (prod and dir only)
1969 David Copperfield
1970 The Magic Christian
1970 The Severed Head
1971 Loot
1971 10 Rillington Place
1972 Young Winston (dir only)
1975 Conduct Unbecoming
1975 Rosebud
1975 Brannigan
1975 And Then There Were None
1977 A Bridge Too Far (dir only)
1978 The Chess Players (Ind.)
1978 Magic (dir only)
1979 The Human Factor
1982 Ghandi (prod, dir only)
1985 A Chorus Line (dir only)
1987 Cry Freedom (dir only)
1992 Charlie (dir only)
1993 Shadowlands (prod and dir only)
1993 Jurassic Park
1994 Miracle on 34th Street (US)
1996 Hamlet
1996 In Love and War (prod and dir only)
1996 e=mc2
1997 Lost World: Jurassic Park
1998 Elizabeth
1999 Grey Owl (prod and dir only)
2002 Puckoon

Richard Attenborough at Amazon UK

Richard Attenborough at Amazon US