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Shaw, Robert (1927-1978)

Actor, Writer

Main image of Shaw, Robert (1927-1978)

RADA-trained Robert Shaw earned a reputation for playing menacing, violent characters, notably as steely-eyed killer Grant in From Russia with Love (d. Terence Young, 1963), a type he returned to frequently throughout his career, both in Britain and America. He showed versatility in playing historical characters, receiving an Oscar nomination (supporting actor) as Henry VIII in A Man For All Seasons (d. Fred Zinnemann, 1966).

Other striking roles included Lord Randolph Churchill in Young Winston (d. Richard Attenborough, 1972) and appearances in adaptations of two Harold Pinter plays, The Birthday Party (d. William Friedkin, 1968) and The Caretaker (d. Clive Donner, 1963), though he may now be most famous for his role as Quint in Jaws (US, d. Steven Spielberg, 1975).

He also wrote the successful play, The Man in the Glass Booth, filmed in 1975 (US, d. Arthur Hiller). His novel, The Hiding Place, was filmed as Situation Hopeless - But Not Serious in 1965 (US/West Germany, d. Gottfried Reinhardt). His second wife was Mary Ure.

Matthew Caterson, Encyclopedia of British Film

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Selected credits

Thumbnail image of Caretaker, The (1963)Caretaker, The (1963)

Donald Pleasance, Alan Bates and Robert Shaw star in Pinter's classic

Thumbnail image of Dam Busters, The (1955)Dam Busters, The (1955)

Much-loved World War II classic about the famous bombing raid

Thumbnail image of From Russia With Love (1963)From Russia With Love (1963)

James Bond battles Russian dissidents for control of a vital decoding device

Thumbnail image of Holiday (1957)Holiday (1957)

Short documentary about a holiday in Blackpool

Thumbnail image of Lavender Hill Mob, The (1951)Lavender Hill Mob, The (1951)

A group of eccentric Londoners plot the perfect crime

Thumbnail image of Man for All Seasons, A (1966)Man for All Seasons, A (1966)

Oscar-laden story of Sir Thomas More's defiance of Henry VIII

Thumbnail image of Tomorrow at Ten (1962)Tomorrow at Ten (1962)

Race-against-time thriller about a kidnapped child

Thumbnail image of Buccaneers, The (1956-57)Buccaneers, The (1956-57)

Pirate action-adventure starring Robert Shaw

Thumbnail image of Hamlet at Elsinore (1964)Hamlet at Elsinore (1964)

The Shakespeare play staged at the real Elsinore castle

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