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Robert Shaw

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Robert Shaw

Born : 9 August 1927
City : Westhoughton, United Kingdom
Rank : ( 1333 )
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Robert Shaw Biography

Robert Archibald Shaw (9 August 1927 – 28 August 1978) was an English actor and novelist. With his menacing mutter and intimidating demeanor, he was often cast as a villain. He is best remembered for his performances in From Russia with Love (1963), A Man for All Seasons (1966), The Sting (1973), the original The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974), Black Sunday (1977), Force 10 from Navarone (1978), The Deep (1977) and Jaws (1975), in which he played the shark hunter Quint.

Early life

Robert Shaw was born in Westhoughton, Lancashire, England, in 1927. His mother, Doreen (ne Avery), was a former nurse born in Piggs Peak, Swaziland, and his father, Thomas Shaw, was a doctor. He had three sisters, Elizabeth, Joanna, and Wendy, and one brother, Alexander (Sandy). When he was seven, the family moved to Stromness, Orkney, Scotland. When he was 12, his father, an alcoholic, took his own life.

Acting career

Shaw began his acting career in theatre, appearing in regional theatre throughout England. In 1952 he made his London debut in the West End at the Embassy Theatre, in Caro William.

Writing career

In addition to his acting career, Shaw was also an accomplished writer of novels, plays and screenplays. His first novel, The Hiding Place, published in 1960, met with positive reviews. His next, The Sun Doctor, published the following year, was awarded the Hawthornden Prize in 1962.

Death

Shaw died of a heart attack on 28 August 1978 while driving from Castlebar to his home in Tourmakeady, Ireland. He suddenly became ill, stopped the car, stepped out and then collapsed on the roadside. He was rushed to Castlebar General Hospital and was pronounced dead aged 51. He had just completed filming of Avalanche Express.

Legacy

Shaw has a public house named after him in the town of his birth, Westhoughton, Lancashire. Also, villain Sebastian Shaw from the X-Men comics is named and modelled after Shaw.

Personal life

Shaw was married three times and had ten children, two of whom were adopted.

His first wife was Jennifer Bourke (1952–63) with whom he had four daughters.

His second wife was actress Mary Ure (1963–75) with whom he had four children. He adopted son Colin, born in 1961, born from his wife's previous marriage to John Osborne. His son Ian Shaw, born in 1969, also became an actor. He also had two daughters, Elizabeth and Hannah, born in 1963 and 1966, respectively. This marriage ended with her death from an overdose.

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