Star Archive

Cecil Parker (1897 - 1971)

On the face of it, Cecil Parker's range as an actor was limited. Middle-aged, middle-class, pompous, blustering characters were his forte. Within that range, however, he produced a wide variety of characters from the kindly to the seedy and played everything from tiny bit parts to title roles.

Parker was born in Hastings and educated at St Francois Xavier College and at Bruge. He served in the First World War and took to the stage in 1922 in Eastbourne. He paid his dues in rep at Huddersfield, the Abbey Theatre Dublin, and Liverpool. By the end of the decade he had appeared on the London stage and also toured South Africa.

By 1933 he was in the West End in The Rats of Norway with Gladys Cooper and Laurence Olivier, and it's also when he began his film career. Like many of his West End colleagues, he filmed in the day and performed on stage in the evening. Over the next few years he built up quite a filmography. Perhaps the most notable items were the Aldwych farces he appeared in on screen. He never joined the gang on stage, but he fitted perfectly into the films.

By the time war broke out he was well established on stage and screen, but it was Blithe Spirit which really made his name. He created the lead role in Noel Coward's smash hit and played nearly 2,000 performances of it from 1941. This kept him off screen for the next few years. Sadly, Rex Harrison took the role in the film version but from this point on Parker was firmly in the featured players category if rarely a film's official star.

Cecil Parker in I Believe in You


1933 The Golden Cage
1933 Cuckoo in the Nest
1934 Flat Number Three
1934 The Silver Spoon
1934 Princess Charming
1934 Little Friend
1934 The Office Wife
1934 The Blue Squadron
1934 Lady in Danger
1934 Dirty Work
1935 Me and Marlborough
1935 Crime Unlimited
1935 The Guv'nor
1935 Foreign Affaires
1936 Her Last Affaire
1936 Men of Yesterday
1936 The Man Who Changed His Mind
1936 Dishonour Bright
1936 Jack of All Trades
1937 Dark Journey
1937 Storm in a Teacup
1938 Housemaster
1938 The Lady Vanishes
1938 The Citadel
1938 Old Iron
1939 Sons of the Sea
1940 Under Your Hat
1940 The Stars Look Down
1940 The Spider
1940 She Couldn't Say No
1940 Two for Danger
1941 The Saint's Vacation
1941 Dangerous Moonlight
1941 Ships With Wings
1945 Caesar and Cleopatra
1946 The Magic Bow
1946 Hungry Hill
1947 Captain Boycott
1947 The Woman in the Hall
1948 The First Gentleman
1948 The Weaker Sex
1948 Quartet
1949 Dear Mr Prohack
1949 Under Capricorn
1949 The Chiltern Hundreds
1950 Tony Draws a Horse
1951 The Man in the White Suit
1951 The Magic Box
1952 His Excellency
1952 I Believe in You
1954 Father Brown
1954 For Better, For Worse
1954 Isn't Life Wonderful
1955 The Constant Husband
1955 The Ladykillers
1955 The Court Jester
1956 23 Paces to Baker Street
1956 It's Great to be Young!
1957 True as a Turtle
1957 The Admirable Crichton
1958 A Tale of Two Cities
1958 Happy is the Bride
1958 Indiscreet
1958 I Was Monty's Double
1959 The Navy Lark
1959 The Night We Dropped a Clanger
1959 The Wreck of the Mary Deare
1960 Under Ten Flags
1960 Follow That Horse!
1960 A French Mistress
1960 Swiss Family Robinson
1960 The Pure Hell of St Trinians'
1961 On the Fiddle
1961 Petticoat Pirates
1962 The Brain
1962 The Amorous Prawn
1963 Heavens Above!
1963 The Iron Maiden
1963 Carry on Jack
1964 The Comedy Man
1964 Guns at Batasi
1965 The Amorous Adventures of Moll Flanders
1965 A Study in Terror
1965 Lady L
1966 Welcome, Mr. Beddoes
1966 Circus of Fear
1967 The Magnificent Two
1969 Oh! What a Lovely War

Cecil Parker at Amazon UK  

Cecil Parker at Amazon US