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Gielgud's Letters

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Author John Gielgud
ISBN 9780753818503
Pages 496
Condition Very Good
Format Paperback

Sir John Gielgud, best known to American audiences for his beloved, Academy Award-winning turn in 1982's smash comedy Arthur, was one of the foremost talents of twentieth-century theatre and cinema. A peerless actor, he was also one of the most celebrated stage directors of the twentieth century, and one of the preeminent Shakespearean interpreters of his time, second perhaps only to his good friend Sir Laurence Olivier. "Over the course of his legendary career, which spanned eight decades, Gielgud reached a vast and varied audience, as attested by his status as one of only ten people to have won all four of America's top entertainment awards - a Academy Award, a Tony, an Emmy, and a Grammy. From his London stage debut in 1921, when he was only seventeen, through such highly successful later-day films as Gandhi, Shine, and Elizabeth, Gielgud never failed to make an indelible impression." "What is not so widely known as his storied accomplishments on stage and screen is that Gielgud was a meticulous and enthusiastic letter writer. From thousands of letters, beginning with those to his mother when he was an aspiring but still unknown actor, the editor has chosen these nine hundred gems, which span a period of eighty years. In them, Gielgud writes candidly about his friends and colleagues, many of whom - Garbo, Olivier, Marlon Brando, Vivien Leigh, James Mason, Charlie Chaplin, and Richard Burton, to name only a few - were legends in their own right. Gielgud revels in gossip, and delivers outspoken and candid evaluations of his peers, their talent, and his personal relationships. He was quite open about his homosexuality at a time when such candor was rare, and his letters offer a glimpse into the gay community of the entertainment industry over the course of the twentieth century, as well as his own very frank assessments of his personal romances." Fans of all ages of this actor and director, as well as anyone interested in the history of film, theatre, Shakesp