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Overview for Bernard Miles
Bernard Miles

Bernard Miles



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Also Known As: Died: June 15, 1991
Born: September 27, 1907 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Uxbridge, England, GB Profession: Cast ... actor director producer screenwriter teacher


Prolific actor of the London stage who entered film in 1933 in small supporting roles. Specializing in portraying country rustics, Miles appeared in Michael Powell's "The Love Test" (1935) and "One of Our Aircraft Is Missing" (1942), Anthony Asquith's "Quiet Wedding" (1940) and the Boulting Brothers' "Pastor Hall" (1940) before his first starring role opposite Noel Coward in the Noel Coward-David Lean directed "In Which We Serve" (1942). He contributed to the script of Will Hay's wartime comedy hit "The Goose Steps Out" (1942) and made his directorial debut with "Tawny Pipit" (1944), a comedy about rare birds that he co-wrote, produced and co-directed.

Although Miles continued writing "The Guinea Pig" (1948) and directing films "Chance of a Lifetime" (1950), he is best remembered for a gallery of superb character performances. Some of the most memorable included the "poor-but-honest" Joe Gargery in David Lean's "Great Expectations" (1946), the sinister phony minister/kidnapper in Alfred Hitchcock's 1956 remake of "The Man Who Knew Too Much," and the bourgeois father threatened by the prospect of his son's interracial marriage in "Sapphire" (1959).

In 1959 Miles founded the Mermaid Theater with his wife, actress Josephine Wilson. His most famous mermaid role was as Long John Silver in the annual Christmas production of "Treasure Island" which he co-wrote and starred in for a 1982 TV version. Miles was knighted in 1969 for his efforts to sustain the Mermaid Theater and was given a life peerage in 1979.

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