Oliver Reed may not have been Britain's biggest film star - for a period in the early 70s he came within a hairsbreadth of replacing Sean Connery as James Bond - but he is an august member of that small band of people, like George Best and Eric Morecambe, who transcended their chosen medium, became too big for it even, and grew into cultural icons. For the first time Reed's close family has agreed to collaborate on a project about the man himself. The result is a fascinating new insight into a man seen by many as merely a brawling, boozing hellraiser. And yet he was so much more than this. For behind that image, which all too often he played up to in public, was a vastly complex individual, a man of deep passions and loyalty but also deep-rooted vulnerability and insecurities. Why was a proud, patriotic, intelligent, successful and erudite man so obsessed about proving himself to others, time and time again? Although the Reed myth is of Homeric proportions, he remains a national treasure and somewhat peculiar icon. Praise for other books by Robert Sellers: Hellraisers: The Life and Inebriated Times of Richard Burton, Richard Harris, Peter O'Toole, and Oliver Reed: 'So wonderfully captures the wanton belligerence of both binging and stardom you almost feel the guys themselves are telling the tales.' GQ. Vic Armstrong: The True Adventures of the World's Greatest Stuntman: 'This is the best and most original behind-the-scenes book I have read in years, gripping and revealing.' Roger Lewis, Daily Mail. Don't Let the Bastards Grind You Down: '...a rollicking good read... Sellers has done well to capture a vivid snapshot of this exciting time.' Lynn Barber, Sunday Times.
Peter O'Toole was supremely talented, a unique leading man and one of the most charismatic and unpredictable actors of his generation. Described by Richard Burton as 'the most original actor to come out of Britain since the war', O'Toole regularly seemed to veer towards self-destruction. With the help of exclusive interviews with colleagues and close friends, Peter O'Toole: The Definitive Biography paints the first complete picture of this much loved man and reveals what drove him to extremes, why he drank to excess and hated authority. But it also describes a man who was fiercely intelligent, with a great sense of humour and huge energy. Always insightful, at times funny, at times deeply moving, this is a fitting tribute to an iconic actor who made a monumental contribution to theatre and cinema.
The definitive insider's story of life behind the scenes and within the corridors of power at the biggest football club in the world. When Martin Edwards became chairman of Manchester United in 1980, the club's estimated worth was £2 million. When he retired over two decades later the club was valued at £1 billion. Under his expert business stewardship, Manchester United grew into one of the world's most recognized sporting brands and the richest and most famous football club on the planet. This autobiography of the former chairman and current life president is an extremely significant book on football's most beloved club.
Approaching its 200th birthday in the rudest of health, the Spectator is known for the quality of its writing and the deep eccentricity of some of its writers. Given the freedom to say what they want, they take that freedom and more, and the result is original, provocative, often very funny, sometimes plain wrong. From Jeffrey Bernard's reports from the Soho frontline and Auberon Waugh fulminating about hamburger gases in the early 1990s, we encounter in turn the wild stream of consciousness of Deborah Ross's restaurant reviews, the pinpoint etiquette advice of Mary Killen, Rod Liddle's frothing but elegantly sculpted outrage and the magazine's secret weapon, low life adventurer Jeremy Clarke. This bumper selection, which also includes eminent diarists, mad letter-writers and Boris Johnson, amounts to a masterclass in comic writing, lovingly compiled and edited by Marcus Berkmann, who still can't believe he wrote a monthly pop column for the magazine for twenty-eight years without being fired.
November2001. The holy month of Ramadan. With the world reeling from the attack on the twin towers, a Delta team is furiously hunting a master terrorist amongst an isolated expatriate community in the mountains of Saudi Arabia. The carefully planted bait, a family matter of honour. Visiting his estranged wife and child on the military hospital compound, Riad al Ajmi, British educated homicide detective, realises a serial killer -- a shadowy spectre of a cat -- has been prowling for more than a decade, the authorities in denial for reasons of their own. His own family in imminent danger, Riad investigates the exotic expat community, uncovering deeply buried dark secrets. His journey takes him into the world of virtual slavery, prostitution and drug trafficking in The Kingdom where to be caught can mean a public beheading.A world where a thing is only a sin if found out. Riad finds himself hunted as powerful forces close in and things come to a terrifying head in the all revealing Night of Power.
Gene Hackman (b. 1930) has been described as the best actor of his generation. During almost half a century as an American film, television and stage actor, film producer and author, he was nominated for five Academy Awards, winning the Best Actor for The French Connection (1971) and the Best Supporting Actor for Unforgiven (1992), as well as three Golden Globes and two BAFTAs. This study examines his film work in detail, with a filmography/videography included.
A behind-the-scenes account of life at Ealing Studios – one of the great cinematic success stories of post-war Britain, and a byword for a particular strain of comic filmmaking that continues to inspire imitators over half a century on. This will be the first full narrative history of the studio, focusing on its output in the 1940s and '50s, when the movies made there were in astonishing (and revealing) synchronicity with the national mood. Told through the memories of the people who worked and performed there, The Secret Life of Ealing Studios will explore how a small group of maverick filmmakers, some of Britain’s most fondly remembered movie stars, and a lot of unsung backroom boys and girls created pictures that presented a unique and enduring view of British identity, and which have since become classics. Particular emphasis will be placed on the filming of Hue and Cry (1947), Passport to Pimlico (1949), Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949), Whisky Galore (1949), The Lavender Hill Mob (1951), The Man in the White Suit (1951) and The Ladykillers (1955), along with war films such as The Cruel Sea (1953). At the heart of the story will be the figure of Michael Balcon - perhaps the closest Britain has ever come to producing a movie mogul in the Hollywood mould - and iconic actors such as Peter Sellers, Alec Guinness, Margaret Rutherford and Sid James. The author is one of Britain's leading entertainment biographers and has a number of successful and critically lauded titles under his belt (his recent book on Oliver Reed, What Fresh Lunacy Is This?, was selected for Books of the Year round-ups in both the Sunday Times and Mail on Sunday). Robert has a track record of securing original testimony from first-hand witnesses and has already begun interviewing people who worked at Ealing.
THE STORY: Jean, an ex-movie star who left Hollywood some time ago, lives with Yvonne, her daughter. Their main activities together involve reenacting moments from Jean's old movies, in which she always seemed to play the other woman. After placi