Simon Ward bigraphy, stories - British actor

Simon Ward : biography

19 October 1941 - 20 July 2012

Simon Anthony Fox Ward (16 October 194120 July 2012) was an English stage and film actor. He was known for his performance as the young Winston Churchill in the 1971 film Young Winston and for his roles as Sir Monty Everard in Judge John Deed and as Bishop Gardiner in The Tudors.

Later career and death

In 1986, Ward starred in the title role of Ross, the first West End revival of Terence Rattigan's play since its original run in 1960. It toured the UK and, after a run at the Royal Alexandra Theatre, Toronto, opened at The Old Vic, featuring Marc Sinden as Dickinson, with David Langton, Roland Curram, Bruce Montague and Ernest Clark in supporting roles.

Simon Ward made few films after the 1970s, although he did have a major role in the Ralph Fiennes version of Wuthering Heights, made in 1992, alongside his daughter Sophie Ward.

In 1987 Ward suffered a serious head injury in a street attack that was never solved.

In 1995, at very short notice, he took over Stephen Fry's role in the play Cell Mates, after Fry walked out of the play near the start of its run.

In 2001–07, he appeared as Sir Monty Everard in the BBC television series Judge John Deed and in 2007–10 as Bishop Stephen Gardiner in The Tudors.

In 2010, Ward appeared in the title role in the British tour of Alan Bennett's play The Madness of George III.

Ward's third and youngest daughter, Kitty, is married to British stand-up comedian Michael McIntyre.

It was announced on 22 July 2012 that Ward had died after a long illness. His agent stated that he had died "peacefully" on Friday 20 July with his family at his side.

Big break

His big break in theatre came in 1967 when he played in Joe Orton's Loot, which led to a number of small film and television roles. All of Ward's major film roles were in the 1970s.

Persistent rumours suggest his first film appearance was an uncredited role as one of the sociopathic students in Lindsay Anderson's If.... (1968). Although this has never been verified, his participation in the film is still listed in his IMDb's actor's credits.

In 1971, he played the title role of Winston Churchill in Young Winston. This was the role which brought him to national prominence, and thereafter the in-demand Ward starred in several high profile films during the mid-to-late 1970s.

The following year he played the Duke of Buckingham in Richard Lester's The Three Musketeers (1973) and The Four Musketeers (1974), and also in 1974 he played author/veterinarian James Herriot in the successful film adaptation of All Creatures Great and Small. He played one of the lead roles (Lt. Crawford) in the 1976 World War I film Aces High, then starred as Lt. William Vereker in the 1979 film Zulu Dawn. He was also seen as a fictional Nazi functionary (the sympathetic one, with whom the audience is supposed to identify) in Hitler: The Last Ten Days (1973). Later film roles included Zor-El in Supergirl (1984).

Filmography

Television

Title Year Role
Festival 1964
Theatre 625 1964 Dick Jervis
Thursday Theatre 1965 Tom Cherry
The World of Wooster 1966 Eustace
Thirteen Against Fate 1966 Alain Malou
The Wednesday Play 1966-8 Donald Clenham / John Hardie
Jackanory 1967-8 Storyteller
The Misfit 1970 Ted Allenby-Johnson
The Black Tulip 1970 Cornelius Van Bearle
Roads to Freedom 1970 Philippe
No Exit 1972 Mark Gray
Cinema: A Documentary 1972 Himself
ABC Afterschool Specials 1973 Various Characters
Great Mysteries 1973 Stephen Barrow
BBC2 Playhouse 1975
Call My Bluff 1976 Himself
Diamonds 1981 Bernard de Haan
An Inspector Calls 1982 Gerald Croft
Allô Béatrice 1984 Archibald
Supergirl: The Making of the Movie 1984 Himself
A Taste for Death 1988 Stephen Lampart
Around the World in 80 Days 1989 Flannigan
Lovejoy 1992 Edward Brooksby
Kurtulus 1994 Winston Churchill
Ruth Rendell Mysteries 1995 Will Harvey
Challenge 1996 Narrator
Real Women II 1999 Samuelson
Family Affairs 2005 Mr. Lee
Heartbeat 2006 Maxwell Hamilton
Judge John Deed 2003-7 Sir Monty Everard
The Tudors 2009-2010 Bishop Gardiner
Living octopus

Living octopus

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