Ernest Thesiger Overview:

Character actor, Ernest Thesiger, was born Ernest Frederic Graham Thesiger on Jan 15, 1879 in London, England. Thesiger died at the age of 82 on Jan 14, 1961 in London, England and was laid to rest in Brompton Cemetery in West Brompton, England.

MINI BIO:

Ernest Thesiger was an eccentric British character actor, as emaciated as he was animated, who portrayed some memorably grotesque and sometimes quite frightening figures, most notably his Dr. Praetorius, the scientist who kept miniature beings in bottles, in "Bride of Frankenstein. Later, in post-war Britain, he played more routine roles although each had the distinctive Thesiger touch.

(Source: available at Amazon Quinlan's Illustrated Dictionary of Film Character Actors).

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Ernest Thesiger Quotes:

Sir William Porterhouse: Oh, nothing like roast beef when a man's hungry.
[sings]
Sir William Porterhouse: Oh, the roast beef of Old England... how does that go? Do you remember that Mr Waverton or was that before your time?
Philip Waverton: Penderel's our song expert.
Sir William Porterhouse: Oh, so you're musical, are you? Well, I've got a bit of a good ear myself...
Horace Femm: [knocking loudly on the table] Have a potato!


Emperor Tiberius: When it comes, this is how it will start. Some obscure martyr in some forgotten province, then madness. Infecting the legions, rocking the empire, then the finish of Rome.


Broughton: I advise you to be very careful, Laing.
Laing: I've a careful nature.
Broughton: You may be putting yourself perilously near dishonesty.
Laing: I've seen men nearer.


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Ernest Thesiger Facts
He was a great friend (and crochet partner) of Queen Mary and is even said to have based his later appearance on her.

His famous role of mad scientist Dr. Pretorius in Bride of Frankenstein (1935) was initially turned down by Bela Lugosi. Universal wanted Claude Rains then to do the part but director James Whale insisted on Thesiger.

He used to lay lilies at the feet of the handsome doorman at the Savoy Hotel in London.

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