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Sir Alec Guinness
Birth: Apr. 2, 1914
Paddington
Greater London, England
Death: Aug. 5, 2000
Midhurst
West Sussex, England

Actor. He is best remembered for his role of 'Colonel Nicholson' in the motion picture "The Bridge Over the River Kwai" (1957), and for his role of 'Obi-Wan Kenobi' in the first three "Star Wars" films (1977 to 1983). Despite many rumors to the contrary, he never spoke the words "May the Force be with you" in any of the Star Wars movies. Born in London, England, he was raised by his mother, and never knew his father. Wanting to be an actor, he began working in advertising as an ad-copywriter and studying at the same time at the Fay Compton Studio of Dramatic Art. He debuted on stage in 1934 and was able to move to the Old Vic Theater in 1936. During World War II, he enlisted into the Royal Navy, and was commissioned in 1942. While he had a bit part in "Evensong" (1934), it is his role of Herbert Pocket in "Great Expectations" (1946) that is really considered his entry into film acting. What followed was a string of films, mostly comedies, and in "Kind Hearts and Coronets" (1949), he paid homage to British acting by playing eight separate roles in that film. He earned a best actor Oscar for his work as 'Colonel Nicholson' in "The Bridge Over the River Kwai" (1957). In 1956 he was awarded the Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE), and in 1959, he was knighted for his accomplishments in theater and film. In 1964, he was nominated for a Grammy Award for his record album, "A Personal Choice," on which he reads a selection of his favorite poems. Considered one of the best British actors in Hollywood, and an International Star, he has worked in such films as "The Lavender Hill Mob" (1951), "Father Brown" (1954), "The Horse's Mouth" (1958 - he was nominated for an Oscar in this film), "Lawrence of Arabia" (1962), "The Fall of the Roman Empire" (1964), "Doctor Zhivago" (1965), "The Quiller Memorandum" (1966), "Scrooge" (1970), and "A Passage to India" (1984). In 1980, he was honored with an Honorary Academy Award for advancing the art of screen acting. He would sum up his many roles and appearances with the simple explanation, "Failure has a thousand explanations. Success doesn't need one." On his acting ability, he once stated "I gave my best performances during the war (World War II) - trying to be an officer and a gentleman." His autobiography, "Blessings in Disguise" was published in 1985. (bio by: Kit and Morgan Benson) 
 
Family links: 
 Spouse:
  Merula Silvia Salaman Guinness (1914 - 2000)*
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:
Petersfield Cemetery
Petersfield
East Hampshire District
Hampshire, England
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Record added: Aug 15, 2000
Find A Grave Memorial# 11784
Sir Alec Guinness
Added by: Sylvia
 
Sir Alec Guinness
Added by: Ggg Ddd
 
Sir Alec Guinness
Added by: Graham J Parsons
 
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Because We Never Met, I Came To Visit You Today, May You Rest in Peace.
- Robert David Miller
 Added: May. 20, 2014

- Stacey
 Added: May. 13, 2014
God bless you Sir Alec Guinness. I enjoy watching your movies. Love always.
- Laura
 Added: May. 1, 2014
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Current ranking for this person: (4.7 after 347 votes)
 

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