John Fraser (actor)

John Alexander Fraser (born 18 March 1931) is a retired Scottish actor of stage and screen.[1] He is best known for his performances in the films The Good Companions (1957), The Trials of Oscar Wilde (1960), El Cid (1961), Repulsion (1965) and Isadora (1968). Apart from acting, he is also an author.

John Fraser
John Alexander Fraser

(1931-03-18) 18 March 1931
Years active1952–1996


One of his earliest roles was as Inigo Jollifant in the second film version of J. B. Priestley's The Good Companions (1957).[2] He went on to have leading roles in films such as El Cid, The Trials of Oscar Wilde (playing Lord Alfred Douglas), Roman Polanski's Repulsion, Isadora and Schizo.[1] He made appearances on television series including Danger Man (1964), Randall and Hopkirk (1969), Columbo (1972), Doctor Who (1981) and The Bill (1995).[3][4]

In 2004, he published his autobiography, Close Up, in which he wrote frankly about his gay life and friendships.[5] In the book, Fraser wrote that actor Laurence Harvey was gay and that his long-term lover was his manager James Woolf.[6] Of Dirk Bogarde, Fraser wrote, "Dirk's life with [Anthony] Forwood had been so respectable, their love for each other so profound and so enduring, it would have been a glorious day for the pursuit of understanding and the promotion of tolerance if he had screwed up the courage ... to make one dignified allusion to his true nature. Self-love is no substitute for self-respect."[6]

Selected filmography

1996Truth or DareGordon Hillan
1982Young Sherlock: The Mystery of the Manor HouseUncle Gideon
1981Doctor Who: LogopolisThe Monitor
1976SchizoLeonard Hawthorne
1975The DollPeter Matty
1966Doctor in CloverMiles Grimsdyke
1965A Study in TerrorLord Carfax
1965Operation CrossbowFlight Lieutenant Kenny
1963TamahineRichard Poole
1962Waltz of the ToreadorsLt. Finch
1961El CidPrince Alfonso
1961Fury at Smugglers' BayChristopher Trevenyan
1960The Trials of Oscar WildeLord Alfred Douglas(BAFTA nomination[7])
1960Tunes of GloryCorporal Piper Ian Fraser
1958The Wind Cannot ReadPeter Munroe
1957The Good CompanionsInigo Jollifant
1955Touch and GoRichard Kenyon
1955The Dam BustersFlight Lieutenant John Hopgood DFC
1954The Face That Launched a Thousand ShipsDrago
1953The Good BeginningJohnny Lipson
1953Valley of SongCliff Lloyd
1953The Desert RatsArtillery Man


  1. "John Fraser". British Film Institute.
  2. "The Good Companions (1957)".
  3. "John Fraser".
  4. "John Fraser".
  5. Fraser, John. Close Up : An Actor Telling Tales The Autobiography of John Fraser (1st, Sarah Zaluckyj ed.). London UK: Oberon Books. ISBN 978-1-84002-457-9.
  6. The Guardian "Sexy self-image that revved up Dirk Bogarde", 2 October 2004
  7. "BAFTA Awards".

Bibliography of works

  • Fraser, John (2004). Close Up. Oberon. ISBN 1-84002-504-2.
  • Fraser, J. (1986). In Place of Reason. Macmillan. ISBN 0-333-40718-0.
  • Fraser, J. (1978). The Bard in the Bush. Granada. ISBN 0-246-11014-7.
  • Fraser, J. (1969). Clap Hands If You Believe in Fairies. Collins. ISBN 0-00-221116-5.
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