James Fox OBE
(1939 - )

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James Fox was born in London in 1939 to a father who was a well known theatrical agent. His brother, Edward, born in 1937, would eventually become an international film star in his own right. In a career that spans more than 50 years, James has established himself as a highly distinguished actor with over 50 film and television roles to his cred­it.

James made his film debut as a child actor in 1950, using his own name, William Fox. His first movie was ‘The Miniver Story’ (1950), a Hollywood-financed sequel to 1942's ‘Mrs. Miniver’. The best of the actor's earliest appearances was in ‘The Magnet’ (1950), in which 11-year-old Fox played a fun-loving young boy at play with his mates. He appeared the next year in the classic Ealing comedy ‘The Lavender Hill Mob’ (1951) which starred Alec Guinness.

Following his education, Fox resumed his acting career in earnest. He appeared in ‘The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner’ (1961) and many television productions. In 1962 Dirk Bogarde was watching a television play and was struck by the magnetism of its young star Maurice Oliver. At the time Bogarde and, Joseph Losey were beginning casting on The Servant. Bogarde was convinced that Maurice Oliver was the perfect choice for the role of Tony, a role Bogarde himself had initially planned on playing. After telephoning a certain British theatrical agent, Bogarde asked him if he knew who this talented young actor was. The agent knew Maurice Oliver very well, He was James Fox, the agent's son. Soon thereafter actress Sarah Miles was asked to portray the role of Vera and mentioned that she thought her boyfriend James Fox would perfect for the role of Tony. Bogarde and, Losey were astounded and stated that was exactly who they wanted for the role. After his performance in The Servant (1963), Fox again appeared with Miles in the big budget American film ‘Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines’ (1964). Fox spent the better part of the decade as a leading man or featured player in major American and British films.

Especial mention should be made of his role in ‘King Rat’ (1965). There are many World War II prison camp films, but King Rat stands out for its gritty treatment of how prisoners survived. Fox plays an RAF Officer who eventually redeems George Segals character; against all the odds. Supporting British actors are there in aplenty - Denholm Elliott, Sir John Mills, Leonard Rossiter and James Donald. Brian Forbes can be proud of this film, not the least for the outstanding photography, (Oscar-nominated), and excellent acting.




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