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FordDavies, Oliver

Oliver Ford Davies

Oliver Ford Davies (né Oliver Robert Ford Davies) was born on August 12, 1939. His father was an English teacher who founded the Latymer School dramatic society. Ford Davies attended King's School (Boarding and Day) in Canterbury. It was during his teens that he joined Questors Theatre in west London, then attended College at Merton, in Oxford (J.R.R Tolkien 1945). He earned a scholarship to Oxford University, he was torn between history and drama. He was was an excellent writer and was also the president of the Dramatic Society at Oxford.

Ford Davies spent six more years at Oxford after graduating to work on his Dphil (Doctorate of philosophy - Dr. Ford Davies) on the wealth and influence of the English aristocracy (1688 - 1714). Being equally talented as a playwright (and a critic) he worked for The Guardian as a reviewer of some note.

After getting his Dphil, Ford Davies became an assistant history lecturer at Edinburgh University (1964-1966) though it was only three weeks into this position before he was sure that he didn't want to pursue this avenue.

Ford Davies acted with the RSC for ten years (1965- 1975) and was in twenty-seven productions during that time. But, during his time at the RSC he found the playwright in him was coming to the surface, for a while he wrote full-time and nearly decided to give up acting, but didn't feel he had the confidence in his writing skills. The pull for acting was too strong.

The Silent~2017 (short) - George
Royal Shakespeare Company: Henry IV Part II~2014 - Shallow
Victoria Meets~2012 (short) - William Gladstone
The Deep Blue Sea~2011 - Hester's Father
National Theatre Live: All's Well That Ends Wells~2009 - King of France
Heidi~2005 - Dr. Classen
McLibel~2005 (doc) - Dr. Arnott
Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith~2005 - Governor Sio Bibble
Gladiatress~2004 -
The Mother~2003 - Bruce
Johnny English~2003 - Archbishop of Canterbury
Oliver Ford Davies as The Archbishop of Canterbury and Rowan Atkinson as Johnny English in Johnny English - photo from
Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones~2002 - Governor Sio Bibble
Revelation~2001 - Professor Casaubon
Just Visiting~2001 - Pit Rivers
Blow Dry~2001 - Doctor Hamilton
Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace~1999 - Governor Sio Bibble
An Ideal Husband~1999 - Sir Hugo Danforth
McLibel: Two Worlds Collide~2005 (doc) - Dr. Arnott
Titanic Town~1998 - Whittington
Mrs. Dalloway~1997 - Hugh Whitbread
Mrs. Brown~1997 - Dean of Windsor
Sense and Sensibility~1995 - Doctor Harris
Paper Mask~1990 - Coroner
Scandal~1989 - Mr. Woods, MI5
Jade~1988 (short) - Professor
Defense of the Realm~1986 - Anthony Clegg
Man Hunt~1974 (V doc short) -
Luther~1972 -

Father Brown~2017 - Bishop Timothy Golding
Catastrophe~2017 - Wallace in 3.3
You, Me and the Apocalypse~2015 - Cardinal Crawshaw in:
     24 Hours to Go
     Saviour Day
37 Days~2014 - Cunliffe in One Long Weekend
Royal Shakespeare Company: Richard II~2013 - Duke of York
Agatha Christie's Marple~2013 - Major Palgrave in A Caribbean Mystery
Game of Thrones~2012 - Maester Cressen in The North Remembers
Land Girls~2011 - Bishop Selvey in Darkest Hours
Hamlet~2009 - Polonius
Margaret Thatcher: The Long Walk to Finchley~2008 - Sir Donald Kaberry
The Relief of Belsen~2007 - Martin Lipscomb
Waking the Dead~2007 - Hugo Keegan in The Fall: Parts 1 & 2
Midsomer Murders~2005 - Otto Benham in Hidden Depths
Rosemary & Thyme~2004 - Sir Basil Slavinski in The Italian Rapscalion (2.6)
Cherished~2004 - Lord Justice Judge
Wren: The Man Who Built Britain~2004 - Sir Roger Pratt
Sparkling Cyanide~2003 - Colonel Geoffrey Reese
MI-5~2003 - Sir Richard 'Dickie' Bowman
My Uncle Silas II~2003 - Cosmo in A Funny Thing
Spooks~2003 - Sir Danny Bowman (2.4) 6/23/03
A History of Britain~2002 (doc) - reader in The Empire of Good Intentions
Sirens~2002 (mini) - Henry Marshall
Foyle's War~2002 - Lawrence Gascoigne in A Lesson in Murder (1.3)
Oliver Ford Davies as Lawrence Gascoigne in Foyle's War: A Lesson in Murder
Murder~2002 - Father Daniel
Bertie and Elizabeth~2002 - Archbishop Lang
Sunday~2002 - Lord Halisham
Fire, Plague, War and Treason~2001 (doc) - voice of
The Way We Live Now~2001 - Mr. Longestaffe in episodes 1.1-1.4
Jack and the Beanstalk: The Real Story~2001 - Dr. Newman in 1.1, 1.2
The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: My First Adventure~2000 - archive footage of Ship's Captain in Curse of the Jackal (AYIJ)
Agatha Christie's Poirot~2000 - Dr. Sheppard in The Murder of Roger Ackroyd
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd~2000 - Dr. Sheppard
David Copperfield~1999 - Mr. Wickfield in 1.1,1.2
Oliver Ford Davies as Mr. Wickfield in David Copperfield - photo from
Kavanagh QC~1994 - Peter Foxcott QC in: (26 episodes) (see Actor Connections - TV)
Pie in the Sky~ -
Heartbeat~1999 - Henry Tomkinson in Testament
McLibel~1998 - Dr. Sydney Arnott
Oliver Ford Davies as Dr. Arnott in McLibel - photo from

The Uninvited~1997 - Gerald Ryle in 1.3,1.4
A Dance to the Music of Time~1997 - Le Bas in: (see Actor Connections - TV)
     Post War
     The Twenties
A Royal Scandal~1996 - Lord Liverpool
Pie in the Sky~1997 - James Truman in Squashed Tomatoes
Truth or Dare~1996 - Derek McKendrick
Wycliffe~1996 - Dr. Donald Treloar in Slave of Duty (3.3)
Expert Witness~1996 - Professor Alan Usher in The Deadly Doctor
Coogan's Run~1995 - Dr. Phillips in Natural Born Quizzers (1.5)
Screen Two~1989-1995 -
     Oliver Dix in The Absence of War
     Treacher in A Landing on the Sun
     Prosecuting Counsel in Death of a Son
MacGyver: Lost Treasure of Atlantis~1994 - Prof. Carson
Maigret~1993 - Dr. Pardon in Maigret on the Defensive (2.3)
Between the Lines~1993 - John Gollap in Some Must Watch (2.5)
Alleyn Mysteries (Inspector Alleyn)~1993 - Sir Herbert Carrados in Death in a White Tie (1.5) 5/16/93
Covington Cross~1992 - Earl of Rougham in The Trial
Anglo Saxon Attitudes~1992 - Professor Stokesay in 1.1-1.3
Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, The~1992 - Ship's Captain in Young Indiana Jones and the Curse of the Jackal (1.1) 3/4/92
Van der Valk~1992 - Guus Kroese in Still Waters (5.3)
The Cloning of Joanna May~1992 - Gerald
Goodbye Cruel World~1992 - Collins in 1.1, 1.3
The War That Never Ends~1991 - Melian Representative
Inspector Morse~1991 - Frederick Redpath in Second Time Around (5.1)
Screen One~1990 - James Acheson in The Police
Chancer~1990 - Vicar in Faith (1.7)
Confessional~1989 - Bishop of London in 1.4
Cause Célèbre~1989 - J.D. Casswell (see Actor Connections - TV)
Murderers Among Us: The Simon Wiesenthal Story~1989 - Police Commander
Casualty~1989 - The Major in Victim of Circumstances (4.7)
A Very Peculiar Practice~1988 - Lecturer in The New Frontier (2.1)
Death of a Son~1988 - Prosecuting Counsel
A Very British Coup~1988 - Tweed - The Staff in 1.1-1.3
A Taste for Death~1988 - Father Francis Barnes in 1.1-1.6
King & Castle~1988 - Mr. Jackson in Class
Hannay~1988 - Russian Ambassador in Voyage into Fear
Defence of the Realm~1985 - Anthony Clegg
Mitch~1984 - Dept. Assist. Commissioner Gradley in Squealer
The Nation's Health~1983 - Mr. Attwood in Collapse
The Citadel~1983 - Reverend Parry in Part 5 (see Actor Connections - TV)
Tenko~1982 - Priest in:
    (2.5) 11/18/82
    (2.4) 11/11/82
Masterpiece Mystery~1982 - Detective Inspector Corliss in The Eye of Apollo (re-broadcast)
Closing Ranks~1980 - Doctor
Philby, Burgess and Maclean~1977 - Patterson
Crown Court~1974-1977 -
     Peter Croft in A Matter of Faith: Parts 1-3
     Fr. Hilary Southan in Midnight with No Pain: Part 1
The Misfit~ -
Father Brown~1974 - Det Insp. Corliss in The Eye of Apollo
The Brontës of Haworth~1973 - John Hunter Thompson in Home and Abroad
The Protectors~1973 - Hansen in Bagman
Moonbase 3~1973 - Astronaut in Achilles Heal (1.3)
Spyder's Web~1972 -
     One in Spyder Secures a Main Strand (1.1)
     Heath in Nobody's Strawberry Food
Time of Your Life~1971 - The Lecturer in A Real Education
Jamie~1971 - Hardy in:
     England Expects
     The Sugar Islands

Richard II~2016 - Duke of York (Barbican Theatre, London; BAM, UK; Harvey Theater, New York, US) (see Actor Connections - Theatre)
Henry IV Part II~2015/16 - Shallow (The Barbican Theatre, London, UK)
Henry V~2015 - Chorus (The Barbican Theatre, London, UK; China Tour; Harvey Theater, New York, US)
Henry IV Part II~2014 - Shallow (RSC)
Richard II~2013 - Duke of York (RSC)
Goodnight Mister Tom~2012/13 - Tom (Phoenix West End, London, UK)
Written on the Heart~2011/12 - Lancelot Andrewes (RSC, duchess Theatre, )
Goodnight Mister Tom~2011 - Tom (Chichester; Tour)
The Crucible~2010 - Judge Danforth (Regents' Park Open Air Theatre, )
The Promise~2010 - Arthur Balfour (Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond, UK)
All's Well That Ends Well~2009 - King of France (Royal National Theatre, London, England, UK)
Love's Labour's Lost~2008 - Holofernes (RSC)
Hamlet~2008 - Polonius (Novello Theatre, )
Much Ado About Nothing~2007 - Leonato (Royal National Theatre, )
Saint Joan~2007 - The Inquisitor (Royal National Theatre, )
The Soldiers' Fortune~2007 - Sir Davy Dunce (Young Vic, London, UK)
The Life of Galileo~2006 - Cardinal Inquisitor (National Theatre Cottesloe (now the Dorman Theatre), Lyttelton, UK)
Larkin With Women~2006 - Philip Larkin (Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond, UK)
Enemies~2006 - ?? (Almeida Theatre, London, UK) (see Actor Connections - Theatre)
The Linden Tree~2006 - Professor Robert Linden (The Orange Tree, Richmond, UK)
Playing With Fire~2005 - Frank Wilkins (National Theatre, London, England, UK)
Oliver Ford Davies as Frank Wilkins and Emma Fielding as Alex Clifton in Playing With Fire - photo from
Darwin in Malibu~2004 - Charles Darwin (Hampstead Theatre, London, UK)

Oliver Ford Davies as Charles Darwin and Cressida Whyte as Sarah in Darwin In Malibu - photo by Tristram Kenton
Absolutely! (Perhaps)~2003 - Lamberto Laudisi (Wyndam's Theatre, London, England, UK)
Oliver Ford Davies as Lamberto Laudisi and Joan Plowright in Absolutely (Perhaps) - photo from
King Cromwell~2003 - Oliver Cromwell (Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond, UK)
Oliver Ford Davies as Cromwell in King Cromwell - photo from
King Lear~2002 - King Lear (The Almeida Theatre, London, UK) (see Actor Connections - Theatre)
Ivanov~2002 - Count Shabielski (The Almeida Theatre, London, UK)
Richard II~2000 - Duke of York (The Almeida Theatre, London, UK)
Coriolanus~2000 - Menenius Agrippa (right) (The Almeida Theatre, London, UK)
Oliver Ford Davies as Menenius (far right) with Ralph Fiennes (center) and ? in Coriolanus - photo by Donald Cooper
2 Pianos, 4 Hands~1999 - Maestro John Ogden (Almeida Theatre, Ipswich, UK)
Larkin With Women~1999 - Philip Larkin (Theatre in the Round, Scarborough, England, UK)
Leprechauns~1999 -
A Christmas Carol~1999 - Desmond Barrit
Naked~1998 - Old Novelist Ludovico Nota (Almeida, Islington, UK)
Ivanov~1997 - Count Shabielski (Almeida Theatre, London, UK)
Virtuoso~1996 - (Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich, England, UK)
Racing Demon~1994 - (Doolittle Theatre, Los Angeles)
Four Repertoire Booklets~1994/5 - (National Theatre, London, UK)
Five Repertoire Booklets~1993/4 - (National Theatre, London, UK)
Six Repertoire Booklets~1991/2 - (National Theatre, London, UK)
Six Repertoire Booklets~1990/1 - (National Theatre, London, UK)
Shape of the Table~1990 - (National Theatre Cottesloe (now the Dorfman Theatre), Lyttelton, UK)
*Racing Demon~1993/4 - Revd. Lionel Espy (Royal National Theatre)
*Murmuring Judges~1993 - Raymond Beckett (Royal National Theatre)
*Absense of War~1993 - Oliver Dix (Royal National Theatre)
The Old Country~1993 - Hilary (Watford Palace Theatre, )

1994/1995 (Royal National Theatre Season: Olivier/Cottesloe/Lyttelton Theatres, London, England, UK):
The Seagull
Johnny on the Spot
Broken Glass
Sweet Bird of Youth
The Birthday Party
Les Parents Terribles
El Cid
Rutherford & Son
Angels in America
The Devil's Disciple
Racing Demon
The Children's Hour
Two Weeks with the Queen
Alice's Adventures Underground
The Wind in the Willows
Out of a House Walked a Man
Leave Taking

1993/1994 (Royal National Theatre Season: Olivier/Cottesloe/Lyttelton Theatres, London, England, UK):
Trelawny of the Wells
An Inspector Calls
Mr. A's Amazing Maze Plays
The Day After Tomorrow
The Game of Love and chance
Billy Liar
On the Ledge
Sweeney Todd
The Absence of War
Murmuring Judges
Racing Demon
Mother courage and Her Children
Inadmissible Evidence
The Madness of King George III
The Mountain Giants
Jamais Vu
Furtive Nudist
Angels in America
The Wind in the Willows

Heartbreak House~1992 - Mazzini Dunn (Theatre Royal Haymarket, London, UK)

1991/1992 (Royal National Theatre Season: Olivier/Cottesloe/Lyttelton Theatres, London, England, UK):
The Trackers of Oxyrhynchus
The Wind in the Willows -
Racing Demon
Murmuring judges
The Trial
The Visit
White Chameleon
Invisible Play
Accidental Death of An Anarchist
The Shape of the Table
Long Day's Journey Into Night
The Miser
Richard III
White Snow
The White Devil
Napoli Milionaria
The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui
Grand Kabuki
At Our Table
The Coup
The Madness of King George III
The Sea
The Little Clay Cart
Blood Wedding

Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde~1991 - Utterson (RSC)

1990/1991 (Royal National Theatre Season: Olivier/Cottesloe/Lyttelton Theatres, London, England, UK):
Peer Gynt
The Trackers of Oxyrhynchus
The Good Person of Sichuan
Sunday in the Park with George
The Beaux Stratagem
Racing Demon - Lionel Espy
Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
The School for Scandal
Abingdon Square
After the Fall
Hamlet - Player King
Richard III
Dancing at Lughnasa
My Children, My Africa
Once in a While The Odd Thing Happens
The Wind in the Willows
Tectonic Plates
Accidental Death of an Anarchist
The Shape of the Table - Prime Minister

1989 (British National Theatre Repertoire Season Cottesloe/Lyttelton/Olivier Theatres, London, England, UK):
Hedda Gabler~1989 -
Whale~1989 -
Hamlet~1989 - Player King (National Theatre, )
The Misanthrope~1989 -
The March on Russia~1989
Juno and the Paycock~1989 -
The Secret Rapture~1989 -
The Voysey Inheritance~1989 -
Fuente Ovejuna~1989 -
Tango Varsoviano~1989 -
The Grapes of Wrath~1989 -
The Shaughraun~1989 - Father Dolan
Speed-The-Plow~1989 -
The Long Way Round~1989 -
Schism in England~1989 -
Uncle Vanya~1989 -
Suicide For Love~1989 -
The Magic Carpet~1989 -
Man Beast and Virtue~1989 -
The Beaux Strategem~1989 -
The Good Person of Sichuan~1989 -
Salome~1989 -
Ma Rainey's Black Bottom~1989 -
Bent~1989 -

Five Repertoire Booklets~1989 - (National Theatre, London, UK)
Merry Wives of Windsor~1986/87 - (Barbican Theatre, London, UK)
Il Candelaio~1986/87 - Scaramuré (The Pit, London, UK)
Principia Scriptoriae~1986/87 - Norton Quinn (The Pit, London, UK)
The Danton Affair~1986/87 - Fouquier-Tinville (Barbican Theatre, London, UK) (see Actor Connections - Theatre)
Waste~1985 - Gilbert Wedgecroft (The Pit, London, UK)
The Devils~1984 - Jean D'Armagnac (The Pit, London, UK)
Measure for Measure~1983/4 - Provost (Royal Shakespeare Theatre; The Barbican Theatre, UK)
Henry VIII~1983/4 - Gardiner (Royal Shakespeare Theatre, ; The Barbican Theatre, UK)
Julius Caesar~1983/4 - Marullus/Titinius (Royal Shakespeare Theatre; The Barbican Theatre, UK)
The Shadow of a Gunman~1981 - Mulligan (The Donmar Warehouse, Donmar, UK)
The Forest~1981 - Milonov (The Other Place, Stratford Upon Avon, UK; The Donmar Warehouse, Donmar, UK; The Aldwych Theatre, Stratford Upon Avon, UK; )
Troilus and Cressida~1981 - Nestor (The Aldwych Theatre, Stratford Upon Avon, UK)
Timon of Athens~1981 - Senator (Donmar Warehouse, Donmar, UK)
The Shadow of a Gunman~1981 - (Warehouse Theatre, London, England, UK) (see Actor Connections - Theatre)
The Love-Girl and the Innocent~1981 - Camp Doctor (The Aldwych Theatre, Stratford Upon Avon, UK)
The Greeks: Patroclus~1980 - (The Royal Shakespeare Company)
The Greeks~1980 - Old Man/Peleus/Polymestor/Priam (The Aldwych Theatre, )
Coriolanus~1979 - Junius Brutus (European Tour)
Love's Labour's Lost~1979 - Boyet (Aldwych Theatre, London, UK)
Henry V~1978 - Montjoy/Governor of Harfleur (The Aldwych Theatre, London, UK)
Henry VI~1977-8 - Somerset (The Aldwych Theatre, London, UK) (see Actor Connections - Theatre)
Coriolanus~1977 - Junius Brutus (Royal Shakespeare Theatre, UK
As You Like It~1977 - Banished Duke Senior (Royal Shakespeare Theatre, UK)
Henry VI~1977 - Somerset (Royal Shakespeare Theatre, UK)
Henry V~1977 - Montjoy/Governor of Harfleur (Royal Shakespeare Theatre, UK)
Henry V~1976 - Montjoy/Governor of Harfleur (International Tour)
The Hollow Crown~1976 - (Carey Playhouse, New York, NY, US)
Perkin Warbeck~1975 - Earl of Huntly (The Other Place, Stratford Upon Avon, UK)
Henry V~1975 - Montjoy/Governor of Harfleur (Royal Shakespeare Theatre; International Tour; The Aldwych Theatre, UK)
Henry IV~1975 - Morton/Sir Michael/Retainer of Northumberland/Wart (The Royal Shakespeare Company)
Aunt Sally or The Triumph of Death~1973 - (Arts Theatre, Cambridge, UK) (see Actor Connections - Theatre)
Twelfth Night~1973 - Valentine, Attendant of the Duke (Ashcroft Theatre, Cambridge, UK) (see Actor Connections - Theatre)
She Stoops to Conquer~1973 - Hardcastle (Ashcroft Theatre, Cambridge, UK) (see Actor Connections - Theatre)
School for Scandal, The~1973 - Sir Peter Teazle (Cambridge Theatre Company, Cambridge, UK)
Hamlet~1973 - Horatio (Cambridge Theatre Company, Cambridge, UK)
Mary Rose~1972 - Mr. Moreland (Shaw Theatre, London, UK)
Romeo and Juliet~1972 - Friar Lawrence (Oxford Playhouse, Oxford, UK)
Tonight at 8~1971 - (Hampstead Theatre, London, UK)
The Alchemist~1970 - (Cambridge Theatre Company, Ashcroft Theatre, London, England, UK)
Pygmalian~1970 - Colonel Pickering (Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Birmingham, UK; Chicago, US)
Hadrian VII~1968/69 - Bishop of Caerleon (The Mermaid Theatre, London, UK; Theatre Royal Haymarket, UK)
Richard II~1967 - John of Gaunt (Birmingham Repertory Theatre)
Othello~1963 - Othello (Oxford Playhouse, Oxford, UK)
Henry IV~1962 - Falstaff (Oxford Playhouse, Oxford, UK)

Romeo and Juliet~19?? - Capulet
Long Day's Journey Into Night~19?? -
School For Scandal~19?? -
Much Ado About Nothing~19?? - Don John
Romeo and Juliet~1955? - Mercutio (King's School?)
Richard of Bordeaux~1950 - (he was 11)

*David Hare Trilogy

Theatre Playwright
King Cromwell~2003 (play)

Tamberlaine Part I~2012 (BBC 3 Radio) - Mycetes
Drowning~2007 - Merlin
The Perfect Courtier~2003 (BBC 3 Radio) - Perseus
Iris~1999 - reader (5 part series)

Audio Books
The Story of the Bible~2011 - Narrator/reader
The Great Poets: William Wordsworth~2011 - Narrator
Conspirata~2010 - Narrator
Lustrum~2009 - Narrator
Great Poets: Wordsworth~2008 - Narrator
The Death of Ivan Ilyich~2008 - Narrator
Ancient Greek Philosophy: An Introduction~2007 - Narrator/reader
Imperium: A Novel of Ancient Rome~2006 - Narrator

Shakespeare's Fathers and Daughters~2017 (book)
King Cromwell~2016 (book)
Performing Shakespeare~2007 (book)
Playing Lear~2003 (book)
From Britain With Love~1997 - (article in the Independent, UK)
God Keep Lead Out of Me: Shakespeare on War and Peace~1985 (book)

Awards, Honors, and Nominations
Drama Desk Awards (NY):
Nom 2001 Acting Featured or Supporting for Richard II
Olivier Awards:
Nom 2004 Best Performance in a Supporting Role for Absolutely! (perhaps)
Rec'd 1990 Best Actor for Racing Demon
Theatre Book Prize:
Shortlist 2003 for Playing Lear

2011 - Did Gertrude Know? Some Problems in Performing Shakespeare (Cantor Modern Art Lecture, University of York)

2003/2004 - Read Hardy, Wordsworth and Larkin at 15th and 16th Thomas Hardy Conferences in Dorchester, Dorset, England, UK

1997 - Gave a recital, part theatrical, part academia, called "Shakespeare's Kings: The Exercise of Power"

A Professional Associate of the Department of Theatre, Film, and Television at the University of York

Won a competition at Oxford for playwriting (with a play on the Black Death)

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