Whatshisname: The Life and Death of Charles Hawtrey

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9780955767074: Whatshisname: The Life and Death of Charles Hawtrey
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At last - the definitive biography of Charles Hawtrey! From Wes Butters, Sony award winning broadcaster and author of Kenneth Williams Unseen, comes an extensively researched and compelling book almost fifteen years in the making, featuring scores of exclusive interviews, including Hawtrey's inner circle and surviving descendents, never-before-seen photographs, and private documents and correspondence. The result is the first definitive account of a life Hawtrey himself was keen to see evaporate into the mist of history. Years before, Hawtrey started out as a child actor in silent films, he was England's leading boy soprano and worked alongside a positive who's who of the thirties and forties. He had directed films and produced West End shows, starred in three hit TV series and was a prolific radio actor for the BBC. Yet he was never content and spent his life desperately searching for stardom and success, which, in his own deluded way of thinking, always failed to live up to expectations. He wasn't the least bit interested in his reputation or leaving a legacy, growing old disgracefully in Deal, the Kent seaside town he lived in for the last twenty years of his life: collapsing in pubs; swearing at autograph-hunting children; and, taking home teenage rent boys (one of whom set fire to Hawtrey's cottage, with Hawtrey still inside it). He died in 1988. Nine people were at his funeral.

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About the Author:

Wes Butters was himself destined for great things, landing the prestigious UK Top 40 chart show on BBC Radio 1 at just 23. But after two years his contract was not renewed and he has spent subsequent years having to shoo away the albatross and resist being typecast as the chart kid. He has since won numerous awards, including a Sony, for his commercial radio work and has produced and presented a number of documentaries for BBC Radio 4 including The Pain of Laughter (on both Kenneth Williams and Charles Hawtrey) and Twice Ken is Plenty. In 2008, Wes wrote Kenneth Williams Unseen with Russell Davies and is currently developing Whatshisname into a screenplay.

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Butters, Wes
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Wes Butters
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