Ralph Richardson Overview:

Legendary actor, Ralph Richardson, was born Ralph David Richardson on Dec 19, 1902 in Cheltenham, England. Richardson died at the age of 80 on Oct 10, 1983 in London, England and was laid to rest in Highgate Cemetery (East) in Highgate, Greater London, England.


Solemn-looking, round-faced, beady-eyed British character star with a slick of dark hair that would gradually vanish as he passed through middle age. His careful, well-modulated speech could lend character to men from all walks of life, and he could just as easily be pompous as down-to-earth. At his peak from 1937 to 1952, during which time he produced some memorable film performances - for one, in The Heiress, he was nominated for an Oscar. First wife died: married actress Meriel Forbes (1913-2000) in 1944. Knighted in 1947. Died from a virus infection. Additional Oscar nomination for Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan Lord of the Apes.

(Source: available at Amazon Quinlan's Film Stars).



Although Richardson was nominated for two Oscars, he never won a competitive Academy Award.

Academy Awards

YearAwardFilm nameRoleResult
1949Best Supporting ActorThe Heiress (1949)Dr. Austin SloperNominated
1984Best Supporting ActorGreystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the ApesThe Sixth Earl of GreystokeNominated

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Ralph Richardson Quotes:

Themistocles of Athens: Truth is a heady wine. A politician must never exaggerate people's capacity for it.

[first lines]
Baines: Good day, sir... In his office there, miss.

Phillipe: Funny, isn't it? Julie working for the embassy and all this time she was your niece.
Baines: Yes. It's a scream.

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Best Supporting Actor Oscar 1949

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Ralph Richardson Facts
Knighted in 1947.

Hobby was collecting motorbikes.

Played two roles originally played by Basil Rathbone. He played Karenin in Anna Karenina (1948) (Rathbone was Karenin in the Anna Karenina (1935) film version). Richarson also played Dr. Sloper in The Heiress (1949) after Rathbone had played Sloper in the Broadway stage version.

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