Richard Attenborough

Highest Rated: 97% Shadowlands (1993)
Lowest Rated: 11% In Love and War (1996)
Birthday: Aug 29, 1923
Birthplace: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England, UK
One of England's most respected actors and directors, Sir Richard Attenborough made numerous contributions to world cinema both in front of and behind the camera. The son of a Cambridge school administrator, Attenborough began dabbling in theatricals at the age of 12. While attending London's Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in 1941, he turned professional, making his first stage appearance in a production of Eugene O'Neill's Ah, Wilderness! He made his screen debut as the Young Sailor in Noel Coward and David Lean's In Which We Serve (1943), before achieving his first significant West End success as the punkish, cowardly, petty criminal Pinkie Brown in Brighton Rock. After three years of service with the Royal Air Force, Attenborough rose to film stardom in the 1947 film version of Brighton Rock -- a role that caused him to be typecast as a working-class misfit over the next few years. One of the best of his characterizations in this vein can be found in The Guinea Pig (1948), in which the 26-year-old Attenborough was wholly credible as a 13-year-old schoolboy. As the '50s progressed, he was permitted a wider range of characters in such films as The Magic Box (1951), The Ship That Died of Shame (1955), and Private's Progress (1956). In 1959, he teamed up with director Bryan Forbes to form Beaver Films. Before the partnership dissolved in 1964, Attenborough had played such sharply etched personalities as Tom Curtis in The Angry Silence (1960) and Bill Savage in Séance on a Wet Afternoon (1964); he also served as producer for the Forbes-directed Whistle Down the Wind (1962) and The L-Shaped Room (1962). During the '60s, Attenborough exhibited a fondness for military roles: POW mastermind Bartlett in The Great Escape (1963); hotheaded ship's engineer Frenchy Burgoyne in The Sand Pebbles (1966); and Sgt. Major Lauderdale in Guns at Batasi (1964), the performance that won him a British Academy Award. He also played an extended cameo in Doctor Dolittle (1967), and sang "I've Never Seen Anything Like It in My Life," a paean to the amazing Pushmi-Pullyu. This boisterous musical performance may well have been a warm-up for Attenborough's film directorial debut, the satirical anti-war revue Oh, What a Lovely War (1969). He subsequently helmed the historical epics Young Winston (1972) and A Bridge Too Far (1977), then scaled down his technique for the psychological thriller Magic (1978), which starred his favorite leading man, Anthony Hopkins. With more and more of his time consumed by his directing activities, Attenborough found fewer opportunities to act. One of his best performances in the '70s was as the eerily "normal" real-life serial killer Christie in 10 Rillington Place (1971). In 1982, Attenborough brought a 20-year dream to fruition when he directed the spectacular biopic Gandhi. The film won a raft of Oscars, including a Best Director statuette for Attenborough; he was also honored with Golden Globe and Director's Guild awards, and, that same year, published his book In Search of Gandhi, another product of his fascination with the Indian leader. All of Attenborough's post-Gandhi projects were laudably ambitious, though none reached the same pinnacle of success. Some of the best of his latter-day directorial efforts were Cry Freedom, a 1987 depiction of the horrors of apartheid; 1992's Chaplin, an epic biopic of the great comedian; and Shadowlands (1993), starring Anthony Hopkins as spiritually motivated author C.S. Lewis. Attenborough returned to the screen during the '90s, acting in avuncular character roles, the most popular of which was the affable but woefully misguided billionaire entrepreneur John Hammond in Steven Spielberg's Jurassic Park (1993), a role he reprised for the film's 1997 sequel. Other notable performances included the jovial Kriss Kringle in Miracle on 34th Street (1994) and Sir William Cecil in Elizabeth (1998). The brother of naturalist David Attenborough and husband of actress Sheila Sim, he was knighte


Highest Rated Movies



No Score Yet Dancing With Crime Ted Peters 2012
33% Closing the Ring Producer Director 2007
95% Charlie: The Life and Art of Charles Chaplin Actor 2004
No Score Yet Golden Gong: The Story of Rank Films--British Cinema's Legendary Studio Actor 2004
No Score Yet Puckoon Writer-Director 2003
No Score Yet Jack and the Beanstalk: The Real Story Magog 2001
83% Light Keeps Me Company Actor 2001
86% Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Jacob 2000
17% Grey Owl Director Producer 1999
82% Elizabeth Sir William Cecil 1998
No Score Yet The Noel Coward Trilogy Actor 1998
54% The Lost World - Jurassic Park John Hammond 1997
95% Hamlet English Ambassador 1996
11% In Love and War Producer 1996
No Score Yet Wave Length The Visitor 1996
No Score Yet Down Came a Blackbird Producer 1995
59% Miracle on 34th Street Kriss Kringle 1994
97% Shadowlands Producer Director 1993
91% Jurassic Park John Hammond $45.3M 1993
No Score Yet Life in the Freezer Actor 1993
60% Chaplin Director Producer 1992
83% Cry Freedom Director Producer 1987
No Score Yet Mother Teresa Narrator 1986
40% A Chorus Line Director 1985
86% Gandhi Producer Director 1982
83% Magic Director 1978
89% The Chess Players (Shatranj Ke Khiladi) Gen. Outram 1978
59% A Bridge Too Far Director 1977
No Score Yet Conduct Unbecoming Maj. Lionel Roach 1975
17% Brannigan Cmdr. Swann 1975
40% Rosebud Edward Sloat 1975
No Score Yet Ein unbekannter rechnet ab (Ten Little Indians)(And Then There Were None) Judge Cannon 1974
44% Young Winston Producer Director 1972
No Score Yet Loot...Give Me Money, Honey! Actor 1972
58% 10 Rillington Place John Reginald Christie 1971
No Score Yet A Severed Head Palmer Anderson 1971
No Score Yet David Copperfield Mr. Tungay 1970
56% The Magic Christian Oxford Coach 1970
No Score Yet Loot Truscott 1970
No Score Yet The Last Grenade Gen. Charles Whiteley 1970
85% Oh! What A Lovely War Producer Director 1969
No Score Yet The Bliss of Mrs. Blossom Robert Blossom 1968
No Score Yet Only When I Larf Silas 1968
32% Doctor Dolittle Albert Blossom 1967
94% The Sand Pebbles Frenchy Burgoyne 1966
90% The Flight of the Phoenix Lew Moran 1965
No Score Yet Guns at Batasi Regimental Sgt. Major Lauderdale 1964
No Score Yet The Third Secret Alfred Price-Gorham 1964
80% Séance on a Wet Afternoon Producer Billy Savage 1964
94% The Great Escape Bartlett 1963
67% The L-Shaped Room Producer 1963
No Score Yet The Dock Brief Fowle Foreman of the Jury Member of the Public Judge 1962
No Score Yet All Night Long Rod Hamilton 1962
No Score Yet Only Two Can Play Gareth L. Probert 1962
86% I'm All Right Jack Sidney de Vere Cox 1960
No Score Yet Breakout (Danger Within) Actor 1960
No Score Yet The Angry Silence Tom Curtis Producer 1960
No Score Yet S.O.S. Pacific Whitey 1960
86% The League of Gentlemen Edward Lexy 1959
No Score Yet Sea of Sand (Desert Patrol) Trooper Brody 1958
No Score Yet Dunkirk Holden 1958
No Score Yet Brothers in Law Henry Marshall 1957
No Score Yet Private's Progress Pvt. Percival Henry Cox 1956
No Score Yet Baby and the Battleship Knocker White 1956
No Score Yet The Ship That Died of Shame George Hoskins 1955
No Score Yet Eight O'Clock Walk Thomas 'Tom' Leslie Manning 1954
No Score Yet The Magic Box Jack Carter 1952
No Score Yet Gift Horse (Glory at Sea) Dripper Daniels 1952
No Score Yet Father's Doing Fine Dougall 1952
No Score Yet Morning Departure Stoker Snipe 1951
No Score Yet Hell Is Sold Out Pierre Bonnet 1951
No Score Yet Boys In Brown Actor 1949
No Score Yet London Belongs To Me Actor 1948
No Score Yet The Guinea Pig Jack Read 1948
No Score Yet Dulcimer Street Percy Boon 1948
95% Brighton Rock Pinkie Brown 1947
97% Stairway to Heaven (A Matter of Life and Death) English Pilot 1947
No Score Yet Journey Together David Wilton 1946
94% In Which We Serve Young Stoker 1942


No Score Yet Nature
Host Voice
  • 2013
  • 1995
No Score Yet Great Performances
  • 2000
No Score Yet Masterpiece
Old Gentleman
  • 2000
  • 1988