The acclaimed biography of Laurence Olivier is reissued to coincide with the centenary of his birth.
Laurence Olivier was both an enchanter and a force of nature. In The Real Life of Laurence Olivier, Roger Lewis goes beyond the magical illusions the actor created, to tell the truth about the man’s sexuality, ambition, revenges, power, preoccupations and achievements.
Most of all, Olivier’s life and work become a love story — the tale of the relationship with Vivien Leigh, who was destroyed by the extent of her passion for him, as he himself was cast into a frenzy of guilt and disillusion.
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Roger Lewis was born in 1960. He has published biographies on Anthony Burgess and Peter Sellers.From Library Journal:
This month, Applause is releasing biographical studies of two of the modern theater's most important?and famous?stars (along with a reprint of a work on Ralph Richardson). The simultaneous printing is appropriate, as they were friends, collaborated on several productions, and set a standard of theatrical acting (some fortunately preserved on video) that will influence future generations. The Gielgud book is an autobiography, and the actor proves himself to be a storyteller of the highest order, making this essential reading for theater lovers. Lewis's book, written in a nonscholarly style at times bordering on the idiosyncratic, was first published in England last year. While readers may not agree with Lewis's opinions, they will certainly not be bored. Lewis enjoys exploring the details that make up such a rich life?Olivier seemed to have met everyone, known everyone, and played every major role in existence. The indexing and photographs are quite good; indeed, this book has many more photos than Gielgud's, and Olivier's makeup and costume are so incredibly diverse that he often doesn't look at all like himself. Both books are recommended for public and academic libraries.?Susan L. Peters, Emory Univ. Lib., Atlanta
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