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Robert Hardy

Robert Hardy

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Timothy Sydney Robert Hardy, CBE, FSA
Society of Antiquaries of London
The Society of Antiquaries of London is a learned society "charged by its Royal Charter of 1751 with 'the encouragement, advancement and furtherance of the study and knowledge of the antiquities and history of this and other countries'." It is based at Burlington House, Piccadilly, London , and is...

 (born 29 October 1925) is an English actor with a long career in the theatre, film and television. He is also an acknowledged expert on the longbow
Longbow
A longbow is a type of bow that is tall ; this will allow its user a fairly long draw, at least to the jaw....

.

Early life


Hardy was born in Cheltenham
Cheltenham
Cheltenham , also known as Cheltenham Spa, is a large spa town and borough in Gloucestershire, on the edge of the Cotswolds in the South-West region of England. It is the home of the flagship race of British steeplechase horse racing, the Gold Cup, the main event of the Cheltenham Festival held...

, England, the son of Jocelyn (née
Married and maiden names
A married name is the family name adopted by a person upon marriage. When a person assumes the family name of her spouse, the new name replaces the maiden name....

 Dugdale) and Henry Harrison Hardy. His father was headmaster of Cheltenham College
Cheltenham College
Cheltenham College is a co-educational independent school, located in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England.One of the public schools of the Victorian period, it was opened in July 1841. An Anglican foundation, it is known for its classical, military and sporting traditions.The 1893 book Great...

. He was educated at Rugby School
Rugby School
Rugby School is a co-educational day and boarding school located in the town of Rugby, Warwickshire, England. It is one of the oldest independent schools in Britain.-History:...

 and Magdalen College, Oxford
Magdalen College, Oxford
Magdalen College is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in England. As of 2006 the college had an estimated financial endowment of £153 million. Magdalen is currently top of the Norrington Table after over half of its 2010 finalists received first-class degrees, a record...

 University where he gained a BA (Hons) in English. On BBC Radio Four's Desert Island Discs
Desert Island Discs
Desert Island Discs is a BBC Radio 4 programme first broadcast on 29 January 1942. It is the second longest-running radio programme , and is the longest-running factual programme in the history of radio...

 he described the degree he obtained as "shabby"

Career


Hardy began his career as a classical actor. In 1959 he appeared as Sicinius opposite Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
Laurence Kerr Olivier, Baron Olivier, OM was an English actor, director, and producer. He was one of the most famous and revered actors of the 20th century. He married three times, to fellow actors Jill Esmond, Vivien Leigh, and Joan Plowright...

 in Coriolanus
Coriolanus
Gaius Marcius Coriolanus was a Roman general who is said to have lived in the 5th century BC. He received his toponymic cognomen "Coriolanus" because of his exceptional valor in a Roman siege of the Volscian city of Corioli. He was then promoted to a general...

at Stratford-upon-Avon
Stratford-upon-Avon
Stratford-upon-Avon is a market town and civil parish in south Warwickshire, England. It lies on the River Avon, south east of Birmingham and south west of Warwick. It is the largest and most populous town of the District of Stratford-on-Avon, which uses the term "on" to indicate that it covers...

, directed by Peter Hall. He then appeared in Shakespeare
William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare was an English poet and playwright, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist. He is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon"...

's Henry V
Henry V (play)
Henry V is a history play by William Shakespeare, believed to be written in approximately 1599. Its full titles are The Cronicle History of Henry the Fifth and The Life of Henry the Fifth...

on stage and in television's An Age of Kings
Henry V (play)
Henry V is a history play by William Shakespeare, believed to be written in approximately 1599. Its full titles are The Cronicle History of Henry the Fifth and The Life of Henry the Fifth...

(1960), and subsequently played Coriolanus in (The Spread of the Eagle, BBC, 1963) and Sir Toby Belch for the BBC Television Shakespeare
BBC Television Shakespeare
The BBC Television Shakespeare was a set of television adaptations of the plays of William Shakespeare, produced by the BBC between 1978 and 1985.-Origins:...

 in 1980. It was while playing Henry V that Hardy developed an interest in medieval warfare, and he later wrote and presented an acclaimed television documentary on the subject of the Battle of Agincourt
Battle of Agincourt
The Battle of Agincourt was a major English victory against a numerically superior French army in the Hundred Years' War. The battle occurred on Friday, 25 October 1415 , near modern-day Azincourt, in northern France...

. He has also written two books on the subject of the longbow, Longbow: A Social and Military History and The Great War Bow with Matthew Strickland. He was one of the experts consulted by the archaeologist
Archaeology
Archaeology, or archeology , is the study of human society, primarily through the recovery and analysis of the material culture and environmental data that they have left behind, which includes artifacts, architecture, biofacts and cultural landscapes...

 responsible for raising the Mary Rose
Mary Rose
The Mary Rose was a carrack-type warship of the English Tudor navy of King Henry VIII. After serving for 33 years in several wars against France, Scotland, and Brittany and after being substantially rebuilt in 1536, she saw her last action on 1545. While leading the attack on the galleys of a...

. In 1996 he was elected a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries
Society of Antiquaries of London
The Society of Antiquaries of London is a learned society "charged by its Royal Charter of 1751 with 'the encouragement, advancement and furtherance of the study and knowledge of the antiquities and history of this and other countries'." It is based at Burlington House, Piccadilly, London , and is...

.

Over the years, Hardy has played a range of parts on television and film. His first continuing role in a TV series was as businessman Alec Stewart in the award-winning oil company drama The Troubleshooters for the BBC, which he played from 1966 to 1970. He won further acclaim for his portrayal of the mentally-unhinged Abwehr
Abwehr
The Abwehr was a German military intelligence organisation from 1921 to 1944. The term Abwehr was used as a concession to Allied demands that Germany's post-World War I intelligence activities be for "defensive" purposes only...

 Sgt. Gratz in LWT
London Weekend Television
London Weekend Television was the name of the ITV network franchise holder for Greater London and the Home Counties including south Suffolk, middle and east Hampshire, Oxfordshire, south Bedfordshire, south Northamptonshire, parts of Herefordshire & Worcestershire, Warwickshire, east Dorset and...

's 1969 war drama Manhunt. In 1975, Hardy appeared in the episode "Such a Lovely Man" in the fifth season of the series Upstairs, Downstairs
Upstairs, Downstairs
Upstairs, Downstairs is a British drama television series originally produced by London Weekend Television and revived by the BBC. It ran on ITV in 68 episodes divided into five series from 1971 to 1975, and a sixth series shown on the BBC on three consecutive nights, 26–28 December 2010.Set in a...

.

He was seen as the senior veterinarian Siegfried Farnon in the long-running All Creatures Great and Small (1978–1990), an adaptation of James Herriot
James Herriot
James Herriot was the pen name of James Alfred Wight, OBE, FRCVS also known as Alf Wight , an English veterinary surgeon and writer, who used his many years of experiences as a veterinarian to write a series of books of stories about animals and their owners...

's novels.

Hardy also made an appearance in the 1986–88 ITV
ITV
ITV is the major commercial public service TV network in the United Kingdom. Launched in 1955 under the auspices of the Independent Television Authority to provide competition to the BBC, it is also the oldest commercial network in the UK...

 comedy series Hot Metal
Hot Metal
-External links:* at BBC Online Comedy Guide...

, in which he played the dual roles of newspaper proprietor Twiggy Rathbone (who bore more than a passing resemblance to Rupert Murdoch
Rupert Murdoch
Keith Rupert Murdoch, AC, KSG is an Australian-American business magnate. He is the founder and Chairman and CEO of , the world's second-largest media conglomerate....

) and his editor, Russell Spam.

In 1993 Hardy appeared in an episode of Inspector Morse
Inspector Morse (TV series)
Inspector Morse is a detective drama based on Colin Dexter's series of Chief Inspector Morse novels. The series starred John Thaw as Chief Inspector Morse and Kevin Whately as Sergeant Lewis. Dexter makes a cameo appearance in all but three of the episodes....

, playing Andrew Baydon in "Twilight of the Gods
Twilight of the Gods (Inspector Morse)
"Twilight of the Gods" is an episode of the British television detective mystery show Inspector Morse dramatized on ITV. It was first broadcast in 1993.-Set-Up:Neville Grimshaw, an investigative journalist, is found shot dead...

". Hardy played the part of the successful businessman with a murky wartime past with a characteristic blend of the vulnerable and the bombastic.

Hardy holds the distinction of playing both Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill
Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, was a predominantly Conservative British politician and statesman known for his leadership of the United Kingdom during the Second World War. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest wartime leaders of the century and served as Prime Minister twice...

 and Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin Delano Roosevelt , also known by his initials, FDR, was the 32nd President of the United States and a central figure in world events during the mid-20th century, leading the United States during a time of worldwide economic crisis and world war...

, and having played both roles on more than one occasion. He played Churchill most notably in Winston Churchill: The Wilderness Years
Winston Churchill: The Wilderness Years
Winston Churchill: The Wilderness Years is an 8-part 1981 drama serial based on the life of Winston Churchill, and particularly his years in enforced exile from political position during the 1920s and 30s...

(1981), for which he won a BAFTA award, but also in The Sittaford Mystery, Bomber Harris
Bomber Harris (television film)
Bomber Harris is a 1989 television drama based on the life of Arthur Harris. It was directed by Michael Darlow and written by Don Shaw.-Cast:*John Thaw - Arthur Travers Harris*Robert Hardy - Winston Churchill*Frederick Treves - Sir Charles Portal...

and War and Remembrance
War and Remembrance
War and Remembrance is a novel by Herman Wouk, published in 1978, which is the sequel to The Winds of War. It continues the story of the extended Henry family and the Jastrow family starting on 15 December 1941 and ending on 6 August 1945. This novel was adapted into a mini-series presented on...

. He played Roosevelt in the BBC serial, Bertie and Elizabeth
Bertie and Elizabeth
Bertie & Elizabeth is a 2002 television film produced by Carlton Television. The film explores the relationship between King George VI and his wife Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon from their very first meeting to the King's death in the winter of 1952...

, and in the French TV mini-series, Le Grand Charles
Le Grand Charles
Le Grand Charles was a 2006 French TV-drama on the life of Charles de Gaulle from 1939 to 1959, written and directed by Bernard Stora. De Gaulle was played by Bernard Farcy, Winston Churchill by David Ryall, and Franklin D. Roosevelt by Robert Hardy....

, about the life of Charles de Gaulle
Charles de Gaulle
Charles André Joseph Marie de Gaulle was a French general and statesman who led the Free French Forces during World War II. He later founded the French Fifth Republic in 1958 and served as its first President from 1959 to 1969....

.

Returning to his Churchill experience at 3:50pm on 20 August 2010 he read Churchill's famous wartime address "Never was so much owed by so many to so few
Never was so much owed by so many to so few
Never was so much owed by so many to so few was a wartime speech made by the British Prime Minister Winston Churchill on 20 August 1940. The name stems from the specific line in the speech, Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few, referring to the ongoing efforts...

" at a ceremony to mark the 70th anniversary of the speech.

He also played Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester in Elizabeth R
Elizabeth R
Elizabeth R is a BBC television drama serial of six 85-minute plays starring Glenda Jackson in the title role. It was first broadcast on BBC2 from February to March 1971, through the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in Australia and broadcast in America on PBS's Masterpiece Theatre.- Episodes...

, and Prince Albert in Edward the Seventh (known as Edward the King to the American audience). He took a role in the 1995 film version of Sense and Sensibility.

His big screen roles include as Minister of Magic Cornelius Fudge in the Harry Potter
Harry Potter
Harry Potter is a series of seven fantasy novels written by the British author J. K. Rowling. The books chronicle the adventures of the adolescent wizard Harry Potter and his best friends Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger, all of whom are students at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry...

films, and as Lord Malan in His Master's Voice
His Master's Voice (radio series)
His Master's Voice is a satirical comedy series on BBC Radio 4. It is written by both Mark Tavener, who also wrote the satirical novel In The Red and the satirical radio series Absolute Power, and Steve Punt. Their writing satirises both the hard-right Conservatism and "caring Conservatism",...

.

His voice performance as Robin Hood
Robin Hood
Robin Hood was a heroic outlaw in English folklore. A highly skilled archer and swordsman, he is known for "robbing from the rich and giving to the poor", assisted by a group of fellow outlaws known as his "Merry Men". Traditionally, Robin Hood and his men are depicted wearing Lincoln green clothes....

 in Tale Spinners For Children
Tale Spinners For Children
Tale Spinners For Children was a series of stories and novels adapted for young audiences on vinyl records in the early 1960s. They included a collection of old fairy tales, folklore, literary classics such as Don Quixote and Robinson Crusoe, and time-honored fables, with the title role sometimes...

"Robin Hood", a LP
Gramophone record
A gramophone record, commonly known as a phonograph record , vinyl record , or colloquially, a record, is an analog sound storage medium consisting of a flat disc with an inscribed, modulated spiral groove...

 from the 1960s, is considered one of the best Robin Hood renditions. His voice was also the voice of D'Artagnan
D'Artagnan
Charles Ogier de Batz de Castelmore, Comte d'Artagnan served Louis XIV as captain of the Musketeers of the Guard and died at the Siege of Maastricht in the Franco-Dutch War. A fictionalized account of his life by Gatien de Courtilz de Sandras formed the basis for the d'Artagnan Romances of...

 in The Three Musketeers, and of Frédéric Chopin
Frédéric Chopin
Frédéric François Chopin was a Polish composer and virtuoso pianist. He is considered one of the great masters of Romantic music and has been called "the poet of the piano"....

, in "The Story of Chopin".

Awards


He was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the Queen's Birthday Honours
Queen's Birthday Honours
The Queen's Birthday Honours is a part of the British honours system, being a civic occasion on the celebration of the Queen's Official Birthday in which new members of most Commonwealth Realms honours are named. The awards are presented by the reigning monarch or head of state, currently Queen...

 of 1981.

Personal life


His first marriage, in 1952, was to Elizabeth Fox, the daughter of Sir Lionel Fox. This marriage ended in 1956. In 1961 he married Sally Pearson, the daughter of Dame Gladys Cooper
Gladys Cooper
Dame Gladys Constance Cooper, DBE was an English actress whose career spanned seven decades on stage, in films and on television....

 and sister-in-law of Robert Morley
Robert Morley
Robert Adolph Wilton Morley, CBE was an English actor who, often in supporting roles, was usually cast as a pompous English gentleman representing the Establishment...

. This marriage ended in 1986. Robert Hardy has three children.

He was a close friend of actor Richard Burton
Richard Burton
Richard Burton, CBE was a Welsh actor. He was nominated seven times for an Academy Award, six of which were for Best Actor in a Leading Role , and was a recipient of BAFTA, Golden Globe and Tony Awards for Best Actor. Although never trained as an actor, Burton was, at one time, the highest-paid...

, whom he met at Oxford University
University of Oxford
The University of Oxford is a university located in Oxford, United Kingdom. It is the second-oldest surviving university in the world and the oldest in the English-speaking world. Although its exact date of foundation is unclear, there is evidence of teaching as far back as 1096...

.

Filmography

  • Torpedo Run
    Torpedo Run
    Torpedo Run is a 1958 Metrocolor war film starring Glenn Ford as a World War II submarine commander in the Pacific who is obsessed with sinking a particular Japanese aircraft carrier.It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects.- Plot :...

    (1958) .... Lt. Redley
  • The Spy Who Came in from the Cold
    The Spy Who Came in from the Cold (film)
    The Spy Who Came in from the Cold is a 1965 film adaptation of the novel of the same name by John le Carré. It was adapted by Paul Dehn and Guy Trosper. The film stars Richard Burton as Alec Leamas, along with Claire Bloom, Oskar Werner, Peter van Eyck, Sam Wanamaker, Rupert Davies and Cyril Cusack...

    (1965) .... Dick Carlton
  • Berserk!
    Berserk!
    Berserk! is a 1967 British Technicolor thriller film starring Joan Crawford, Ty Hardin, and Judy Geeson in a macabre mother and daughter tale about a circus plagued with murders. The screenplay was written by Herman Cohen and Aben Kandel, and the film directed by Jim O'Connolly...

    (1967) .... Supt. Brooks
  • How I Won the War
    How I Won the War
    How I Won the War is a black comedy film directed by Richard Lester, released in 1967. The film stars Michael Crawford as bungling British Army Officer Lieutenant Earnest Goodbody, with John Lennon , Jack MacGowran , Roy Kinnear and Lee Montague as soldiers under his command...

    (1967) .... British General
  • Elizabeth R
    Elizabeth R
    Elizabeth R is a BBC television drama serial of six 85-minute plays starring Glenda Jackson in the title role. It was first broadcast on BBC2 from February to March 1971, through the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in Australia and broadcast in America on PBS's Masterpiece Theatre.- Episodes...

    (1971)........ Robert Dudley
  • Psychomania
    Psychomania
    Psychomania is a British horror film and cult film starring Nicky Henson as a devil worshipping gang leader and Robert Hardy as the detective in charge of bringing them in.It is also known as Death Wheelers Are.....

    (1971) .... Chief Inspector Hesseltine
  • 10 Rillington Place (1971) .... Malcolm Morris
    Malcolm Morris
    For the dermatologist, see Sir Malcolm Morris Malcolm Morris QC was a British lawyer. He was involved in many high-profile cases, such as the prosecutions of suspected serial killer John Bodkin Adams and pop star Mick Jagger, and the defence of Timothy Evans.-Career:Morris was called to the bar by...

  • Young Winston
    Young Winston
    Young Winston is a 1972 British film based on the early years of British Prime Minister Winston Churchill.The film was based on the book My Early Life: A Roving Commission by Winston Churchill. The first part of the film covers Churchill's unhappy schooldays, up to the death of his father...

    (1972) .... Headmaster
  • Demons of the Mind
    Demons of the Mind
    Demons of the Mind is a British period horror film, produced by the Hammer studio. It was directed by Peter Sykes and its cinematographer was Arthur Grant. The cast includes Gillian Hills , Robert Hardy, Patrick Magee, Michael Hordern, and Shane Briant...

    (1972) .... Zorn
  • Gawain and the Green Knight
    Gawain and the Green Knight (1973 film)
    Gawain and the Green Knight is a 1973 film directed by Stephen Weeks, and starring Murray Head as Gawain and Nigel Green in his final theatrical film as the Green Knight...

    (1973) .... Sir Bertilak
  • Edward the Seventh (1975) .... Albert, Prince Consort
  • The Shooting Party
    The Shooting Party
    The Shooting Party is a 1985 film directed by Alan Bridges and based on the book of the same name by Isabel Colegate. The film is set in 1913 and shows the way of life of English aristocrats, gathered for pheasant shooting and general self-indulgence. Their way of life is contrasted with the...

    (1985) .... Lord Bob Lilburn
  • Jenny's War
    Jenny's War
    .Jenny's War is a 1985 war telelvision serial set during World War II, made by HTV in association with Columbia Pictures. It is directed by and written by Steve Gethers. The screenplay is based on the novel with the same name of Jack Stoneley...

    (1985) .... Klein
  • Northanger Abbey
    Northanger Abbey (1986 film)
    Jane Austen's novel Northanger Abbey was adapted for television in 1986 by the A&E Network and the BBC.-Crew:*Giles Foster *Louis Marks *Ilona Sekacz *Nat Crosby...

    (1986) ... General Tilney
  • Paris by Night
    Paris by Night (film)
    Paris by Night is a 1988 British thriller film written and directed by David Hare and starring Charlotte Rampling, Michael Gambon and Iain Glen. A British politician spends some time in Paris, but gets caught up in a murder....

    (1988) .... Adam Gillvray
  • Mary Shelley's Frankenstein
    Mary Shelley's Frankenstein
    Frankenstein is a 1994 American horror film directed by Kenneth Branagh. The film starred Branagh, Robert De Niro, Tom Hulce, Helena Bonham Carter. It was produced on a budget of $45 million...

    (1994) .... Professor Krempe
  • Middlemarch
    Middlemarch
    Middlemarch: A Study of Provincial Life is a novel by George Eliot, the pen name of Mary Anne Evans, later Marian Evans. It is her seventh novel, begun in 1869 and then put aside during the final illness of Thornton Lewes, the son of her companion George Henry Lewes...

    (1994) .... Mr. Brooke
  • Sense and Sensibility (1995) .... Sir John Middleton
  • Castle Ghosts of the British Isles (1995–1997) .... Himself
  • Mrs Dalloway
    Mrs Dalloway
    Mrs Dalloway is a novel by Virginia Woolf that details a day in the life of Clarissa Dalloway in post-World War I England. It is one of Woolf's best-known novels....

    (1997) .... Sir William Bradshaw
  • The Tichborne Claimant (1998) .... Lord Rivers
  • An Ideal Husband
    An Ideal Husband (1998 film)
    An Ideal Husband is a 1998 film based on the play of the same name by Oscar Wilde.- Plot :While the film retains the premise of Wilde's play and much of the original dialogue, it updates the action to the present-day...

    (1998) .... Lord Caversham
  • The 10th Kingdom
    The 10th Kingdom
    The 10th Kingdom is an American epic fantasy miniseries written by Simon Moore and produced by Britain's Carnival Films, Germany's Babelsberg Film und Fernsehen, and the USA's Hallmark Entertainment...

    (2000) .... Chancellor Griswold
  • The Gathering (2002) .... The Bishop
  • Thunderpants
    Thunderpants
    Thunderpants is a 2002 family film about a boy whose incredible capacity for flatulence gets him a job as an astronaut. The film was directed by Pete Hewitt, whose previous work included Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey and The Borrowers...

    (2002) .... Doctor
  • Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
    Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (film)
    Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is a 2002 fantasy film directed by Chris Columbus and based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. It is the second instalment in the Harry Potter film series, written by Steve Kloves and produced by David Heyman...

    (2002) .... Cornelius Fudge
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
    Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (film)
    Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is a 2004 fantasy film directed by Alfonso Cuarón and based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. It is the third instalment in the Harry Potter film series, written by Steve Kloves and produced by Chris Columbus, David Heyman and Mark Radcliffe...

    (2004) .... Cornelius Fudge
  • Making Waves (2004) .... Father Parry
  • Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
    Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (film)
    Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is a 2005 fantasy film directed by Mike Newell and based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. It is the fourth instalment in the Harry Potter film series, written by Steve Kloves and produced by David Heyman...

    (2005) .... Cornelius Fudge
  • Lassie
    Lassie (2005 film)
    Lassie is a 2005 family-based film directed by Charles Sturridge. When a family hits financial crisis, they have no choice but to sell Lassie...

    (2005) .... Judge Murray
  • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
    Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (film)
    Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is a 2007 fantasy film directed by David Yates and based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. It is the fifth instalment in the Harry Potter film series, written by Michael Goldenberg and produced by David Heyman and David Barron...

     
    (2007) .... Cornelius Fudge
  • Margaret (2009) ... Willie Whitelaw

External links