Victor Maddern

Victor Jack Maddern (16 March 1928 22 June 1993) was an English actor,[1] described by The Telegraph as having "one of the most distinctive and eloquent faces in post-war British cinema."[2]

Victor Maddern
Born
Victor Jack Maddern

(1928-03-16)16 March 1928
Died22 June 1993(1993-06-22) (aged 65)
Hackney, London, England
Alma materRoyal Academy of Dramatic Art
OccupationActor, businessman
Years active1950-1992
Spouse(s)Joan Maddern (?-1993) (his death) 4 children

Life and career

Born in Seven Kings, Ilford, Essex, Maddern attended Beal Grammar Boys school and afterwards joined the Merchant Navy at the age of 15 and served in the Second World War from 1943 until 1946, when he was medically discharged.[3]

He subsequently trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA).[3] He made his first screen appearance in Seven Days to Noon in 1950, playing a reluctant soldier obliged to shoot a psychotic scientist.[1] One of his earliest stage roles was as Sam Weller in The Trial of Mr Pickwick (1952).[4] Appearing as Helicon in a production of Albert Camus' play Caligula (1964), Maddern was singled out for critical praise, and in My Darling Daisy (1970) portrayed the notorious Frank Harris.[4] He also did two stints in the highly successful Agatha Christie play The Mousetrap - the longest-running production in London's West End.[4]

From 1950 to the early 1990s, Maddern appeared in films and TV series, often portraying military types. He was usually cast as sergeants or corporals, as well as privates, seaman or airmen, played either straight or comically.[5] He played minor roles in five Carry On films.[6] Among his many TV roles were Private Gross in Denis Cannan's Captain Carvallo, old Lampwick's son-in-law in The Dick Emery Show.,[7][8] and Tommy Finch, the British dad in "Fair Exchange" in 1962-63 on CBS network, one of the first hour-long situation comedies. In 1963, he had a guest role on Perry Mason as jewel smuggler Gilbert Tyrell, in the episode "The Case of the Floating Stones."[9]

Besides acting, Maddern ran a script printing business, and in 1991 opened a public speaking school.[3] A lifelong Conservative Party voter, he offered special rates to Conservative MPs and constituency workers.

In his later years, Maddern devoted much of his time to charitable work.[5] He was married with four daughters.[2] He died from a brain tumour in Hackney, London,[10] in 1993, aged 65.[11]

Partial filmography

Selected television credits

References

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