Errol Flynn. Biografía. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.

Errol Flynn biography:



Errol Leslie Thomson Flynn (June 20, 1909 – October 14, 1959) was an Australian film actor, writer, producer, and director. He became most famous for his romantic swashbuckler roles in Hollywood films and his flamboyant lifestyle. He is remembered as one of Hollywood’s legendary figures, with leading roles in more than 60 movies during his short 50 years of life. Flynn brought entertainment to millions of movie goers with his devil–may–care and derring do on–screen adventures. Like many others before and after him, he blurred the lines between on screen and off screen personae. Few did that as well as Errol Flynn.




Early life

Flynn was born in Hobart, Tasmania, to Marelle Young and Theodore Thomas Flynn. His family moved to Sydney, New South Wales, when Flynn was a young child. Here he met his first love, the ocean. His father, Theodore Thomson Flynn, was a biologist and a professor at the Queen’s University of Belfast in Northern Ireland for the latter part of his career. Flynn was a very athletic person However, he did not excel at his studies. He was expelled from two private schools for fighting. When he was 20 years old, he moved to New Guinea, where he bought a tobacco plantation. Unfortunately the business failed. His next attempt at business, a copper mining venture in the hills near the Laloki Valley near Port Moresby, also failed.




In the early 1930s, Flynn left for Great Britain and got an acting job with the Northampton Repertory Company, where he worked for seven months. There, he starred in the American film In the Wake of the Bounty, directed by Charles Chucker in 1933. According to Gerry Connelly’s biography Errol Flynn in Northampton, Flynn also performed at the 1934 Malvern Festival, in Glasgow, and in London’s West End. He was discovered by a Warner Bros. executive, signed to a contract, and shipped to America as a contract actor. In 1942, he became a naturalized citizen of the United States.




Acting career

Flynn became an overnight sensation with his first starring role, Captain Blood, in 1935. He became typecast as a swashbuckler and made a host of such films, including The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938), The Dawn Patrol (1938) with his close friend David Niven, Dodge City (1939), The Sea Hawk (1940), and Adventures of Don Juan (1948).

Flynn played opposite Olivia de Havilland in eight films, including Captain Blood, The Charge of the Light Brigade (1936), The Adventures of Robin Hood, Dodge City, Santa Fe Trail (1940), and They Died with their Boots On (1941). The Adventures of Robin Hood was Flynn’s first film in Technicolor.




During the shooting of The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex (1939), Flynn and co-star Bette Davis had some legendary off-screen fights, with Davis striking him harder than necessary while filming a scene. Their relationship was always strained, but Warner Brothers teamed them up twice. Their off-screen relationship was later reconciled. A contract was even presented to lend them out as Rhett Butler and Scarlett O’Hara in Gone with the Wind but the teaming failed to materialize.

Flynn won acclaim as a drunken ne’er-do-well in The Sun Also Rises (1957). His colorful autobiography, My Wicked, Wicked Ways, was published just months after his death and contains humorous anecdotes about Hollywood. Flynn wanted to call the book In Like Me, but the publisher refused. In 1984, CBS produced a television mini-series based on Flynn’s autobiography, starring Duncan Regehr as Flynn.

In the 1950s, Flynn tried his hand as a novelist, penning the adventure novel Showdown, which was published in 1952.






Flynn was married three times, to actress Lili Damita from 1935 until 1942 (one son, Sean Flynn); to Nora Eddington from 1943 until 1948 (two daughters, Deirdre and Rory); and to actress Patrice Wymore from 1950 until his death (one daughter, Arnella Roma). In Hollywood, he tended to refer to himself as Irish rather than Australian. Flynn lived with Wymore in Port Antonio, Jamaica, in the 1950s. He was largely responsible for developing tourism to this area, and for a while owned the Titchfield Hotel, decorated by the artist Olga Lehmann, and popularized trips down rivers on bamboo rafts.


Errol Flynn (1909 - 1959)


Later life

Flynn decided to leave California in 1952, after purchasing a yacht named Zaca with his third wife. He had become bored with Hollywood and felt he was not being offered promising roles. Flynn stated that being on the ocean made him feel comfortable and at home. In his later years, he started writing.




Flynn wrote the following books:

  • Beam Ends (1937)

  • Showdown (1946)

  • My Wicked, Wicked Ways (1959)

While at a friend’s house in Vancouver, British Columbia, Flynn suffered a heart attack and died on October 14, 1959. He is interred in Forest Lawn cemetery in Glendale, California.






Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139

Cursos de inglés en Madrid. Paraninfo.

John Fitzgerald Kennedy. Biografía. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.



John Fitzgerald Kennedy biography:


Childhood and early teen years:

Born on May 29, 1917, John Fitzgerald Kennedy was the second of nine children born to Rose Fitzgerald and Joseph Kennedy, Sr. Never a very healthy baby, John (called Jack by his family) suffered from chicken pox, measles, whooping cough, and other childhood diseases. His family was in a constant state of worry that something would happen and they would lose their son. Growing up, Jack lived a very comfortable life due to the success of his father and grandparents as politicians. Joseph Kennedy Sr. encouraged his children, especially the boys, to compete with each other in games and sports.




As he grew up, Jack attended Choate boarding school. Upon graduation, he studied briefly at Princeton, then at Harvard and played football there as well, until he injured his back and was unable to continue playing. During his college career, his immediate family moved to London, where his father was the US Ambassador to England. Jack visited his father several times in England, and became increasingly interested in world politics. He wrote his senior thesis on Great Britain’s lack of preparedness for the war with Germany.


Entrance into the political world

After graduating college, Jack and his older brother, Joe, both joined the Navy. Jack became a commander of the PT-109, a patrol torpedo boat, in the South Pacific. While he was able to survive a Japanese attack on his ship, his brother was not nearly as lucky, as he died in a plane explosion in Europe the following year. After the war, JFK returned home and was awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Medal for courage and leadership. He decided to run for Congress in Massachusetts, and was elected in 1946. After serving three successful terms, he was elected to the US Senate in 1952.




On the road to presidency

When he was 36 years old, shortly after being elected senator, JFK married Jacqueline Bouvier, 24. He then discovered he needed two serious operations on his back. While recuperating, he wrote a book about a few US senators that later won a Pulitzer prize. His first child, Caroline, was born in 1957. In 1956, after missing the nomination to run for Vice President by a very close amount, JFK made it a point to run the following election for President of the United States. Once nominated by the Democratic party, he chose Lyndon B Johnson to be his running mate. The pair beat Vice President Richard Nixon in a very close competition. At the young age of 43, Kennedy was the youngest person elected President, as well as the first Catholic. JFK and his wife had their second child, John, shortly before JFK’s inauguration.




Ask not what your country can do for you…

From the second he took office, JFK took the nation by storm. His captivating inauguration speech, which claimed one should “ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country,” resonated in the hearts and minds of many Americans. Despite his apparent confidence, the new President had many worries. He understood that nuclear war between the US and the Soviet Union was very possible; if it were to occur, millions would lose their lives. He walked a tedious line throughout the entire situation, coming close to war in 1962 over the Cuban Missile Crisis. He also had to sort through many issues dealing with racial discrimination. In 1954, the Supreme Court stated that black and white children should attend school together. However, many schools fought against this severely, as did restaurants, places of retail, public transit, and the like. JFK proposed a new Civil Rights bill when the previous one was being ignored, and he even went on TV to appeal to Americans to end racism in our country.




A life taken too soon

Unfortunately all of the good efforts President Kennedy put forth were abruptly ended on November 21, 1963. While in Texas giving a speech, Kennedy was shot by Lee Harvey Oswald. Several days later, before police had a chance to extract adequate information from Oswald, a man named Jack Ruby shot and killed Oswald. Although many aspects of his death remain a mystery, JFK left a significant impact on the nation. His strong beliefs in civil rights, the Peace Corps, his encouragement to move away from the death penalty, and so on would live out long lives in the hearts of many Americans.





Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139

Cursos de inglés en Madrid. Paraninfo.

Thomas Jefferson. Biografía. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.


Thomas Jefferson biography:

Thomas Jefferson was born April 13, 1743 in the rural Piedmont region of the Commonwealth of Virginia. He had a succession of tutors throughout his childhood, which he divided between the family estates of Shadwell and Tuckahoe. When Jefferson was fourteen his father died, leaving him to assume the role of patriarch upon reaching a suitable age.

After two years of study under Reverend James Maury, Jefferson traveled to Williamsburg, where he took up studies at the College of William and Mary. With an eye on politics, Jefferson was drawn to the legal profession, where he flourished under the guidance of George Wythe. In time, Jefferson established himself as a lawyer in Williamsburg, which led to his election to the House of Burgesses in 1769.




When the Shadwell estate burned in a fire the following year, Jefferson proceeded in earnest on the construction of his new homestead, Monticello. On New Years Day, 1772, Jefferson was married to Martha Wayles Skelton, a young widow and the daughter of a prominent Virginia landowner. Through this alliance, Jefferson himself would later become one of the most prominent landowners and slaveholders in all Virginia.

Several successes in the House of Burgesses led to Jefferson s nomination to the Second Continental Congress at Philadelphia, where he was the second youngest delegate in attendance. By virtue of timing as much as skill, Jefferson was selected to draft the Declaration of Independence, the document that formally severed all prior ties with Britain. At the time, Jefferson’s authorship was anonymous, but he later gained widespread honor and recognition for his role in the Revolution.




Returning to Virginia to help draw up the new State Constitution, Jefferson had a fundamental role in many significant reforms, including the abolishment of primogeniture and entail and the disestablishment of the Anglican Church. Eventually, Jefferson’s Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom was also adopted. On the strength of these and other successes, Jefferson was selected by his peers to become governor of Virginia in 1779.

In two years as governor, Jefferson suffered greatly amidst the push and pull of the Revolutionary War. He retired to Monticello in 1781 to care for his ailing wife, who died the following year, leaving two healthy daughters behind. Jefferson grieved profusely, ensconcing himself in his estate for weeks.




Eventually, Jefferson recovered and re-entered the world of politics. A brief legislative stint was followed by a five-year tenure as minister to France. Based in Paris, Jefferson engaged in a series of difficult negotiations, hoping to win diplomatic privileges for the United States among several major powers. He was largely unsuccessful. To his benefit, he soaked up the culture of Europe and had a liaison with an English artist named Maria Cosway. Further, he played an incendiary, if minor, role in initiating the French Revolution.




Intending only to return for a sabbatical, Jefferson found himself detained in the United States when President George Washington chose him as the first Secretary of State. Jefferson served in this capacity for the duration of Washington s first term, but found himself increasingly at odds with the Secretary of Treasury, Alexander Hamilton. Out of their ideological differences, the first two political parties emerged, with the Federalists supporting a strong national government behind Hamilton and the Democratic- Republicans supporting strong states rights behind Jefferson.

Following another two year retirement at Monticello, Jefferson was thrust back into the political spotlight when he ran for President against the Federalist candidate John Adams. Suffering a narrow defeat, Jefferson assumed the role of Vice President, which he treated lightly and somewhat cavalierly. In opposition to the administration he served in, Jefferson secretly authored a treatise against the expanding powers of the federal government, later known as the Kentucky Resolutions.




In the election of 1800, Jefferson again faced Adams but this time emerged victorious, after a protracted electoral controversy between him and his eventual Vice President, Aaron Burr. Jefferson’s Presidency was characterized by a gradual shift toward strong federalist initiatives, which increased the power of the executive branch and of the national government writ large. Most prominent among these policy decisions were the Louisiana Purchase, which doubled the size of the United States just as it transformed it into an unwitting empire, and later the Embargo Act, which unsuccessfully attempted to put a chokehold on all foreign trade and instead put a severe crimp in the American economy.

During Jefferson’s two administrations as President, he weathered several storms, including a scandal involving him and his purported (and likely actual) slave mistress, Sally Hemings, several secession attempts by factions both northern and southern, repeated conflicts with a hostile judiciary wing led by Chief Justice John Marshall, and most seriously, a spate of European wars that put American interests at home and abroad in severe jeopardy. Despite these dangers, Jefferson was able to avoid a foreign war, although he did so at the expense of his reputation and his country’s good fortunes.




Retiring at the end of his second term in 1809, Jefferson left office in semi-disgrace, having lost the confidence of many because of his grave error in judgment regarding the embargo. He spent a productive seventeen years of retirement at Monticello, corresponding with old friends and advising his successors while devoting still plentiful energy to interests such as architecture, agriculture and mechanics. His final legacy involved the founding of the University of Virginia, which he helped establish in every respect imaginable.

Years of ostentatious living and meager profits left Jefferson severely in debt toward the end of his life. He never recovered his losses, and was forced to submit to the embarrassment of a lottery in his support, later followed by an auction of his personal belongings. One of the rarest combinations of disgrace and distinction the United States has ever known, Thomas Jefferson died at the age of eighty-three on July 4, 1826, exactly fifty years after his Declaration of Independence was immortalized by the approval of Congress.




Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139

Cursos de inglés en Madrid. Paraninfo.


Joan Crawford. Biografía. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.



Joan Crawford Biography:


LUCILLE FAY LESEUR,  (1906-1977), [pseud. Joan Crawford], actress, was born to Thomas and Anna (Johnson) LeSeur in San Antonio, Texas, on March 23, 1906. Her father deserted the family before she was born, and her life was marked by numerous hardships, including periods of near-poverty that lasted for years. Shortly after Lucille’s birth, Anna LeSeur bundled up her infant daughter and her young son Hal and moved to Lawton, Oklahoma, where she married a local impresario named Henry Cassin. Encouraged by her stepfather, Lucille adopted the stage name Billie Cassin and began dancing in his music hall. When the hall folded around 1916, the family moved to Kansas City, Missouri, where Lucille began working to help support the family. She attended private school in Kansas City and then Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri.


Feeling academically unprepared, she left Stephens after a short stay and returned to Kansas City, where she worked at several menial jobs before finding work as a dancer. After winning a Charleston contest in a Kansas City café, she moved to Chicago with forty-six dollars in her pocket and hopes of hitting the big time. She won a part with a traveling dance company and performed as a chorine in some of the more reputable theaters in the Midwest. J. J. Schubert saw her work and hired her for a show he was producing in New York. Lucille subsequently caught the eye of a Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer talent scout, who invited her to take a screen test. She passed the test, signed a six-month contract with MGM for seventy-five dollars a week, and moved to Hollywood in early 1925.



She made such a positive impression during her early film career that MGM head Louis B. Mayer launched a fan-magazine contest to find her a new name. The result was «Joan Crawford,» a name she claimed she never liked. Her career with MGM stretched from 1925 to 1942, and she became one of that company’s biggest stars. Film theater owners voted her among the top ten money-making stars from 1932 to 1936, and by the late 1930s she was one of Hollywood’s highest paid actresses. Joan’s rise to the top of the Hollywood heap was marked by tenacity, hard work, and a chameleon-like adaptability. In the 1920s she frequently played Charleston-dancing flappers and other «wild youth» roles common to the period. In marked contrast, during the 1930s she often portrayed depression-era working women struggling to survive.



No matter what roles she played, audiences flocked to her movies. Despite her successes, Joan Crawford believed that MGM was giving its meatiest roles to other actresses, and in 1942 she asked the studio to release her from her contract. MGM obliged, believing her popularity was waning. Her career then saw new life with Warner Brothers, and she began playing strong-willed maternal figures, such as the waitress-turned-restauratrice alienated from her daughter in «Mildred Pierce» (1945), the film for which she won the Academy Award for best actress.


Though she was considered a has-been by the late 1950s, she made a surprising comeback in the highly successful «What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?» (1962), which cast her as a physically disabled woman in conflict with her demented sister, played by old rival Bette Davis. Similar roles in the handful of low-budget horror movies that followed rounded out a film career that spanned more than forty years and included performances in more than eighty films. She made her last movie in 1970. 


Joan’s formidable success as a Hollywood actress counterbalanced an exceptionally rocky personal life. Her first three marriages, to Hollywood actors Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. (1929-33), Franchot Tone (1935-39), and Phillip Terry (1942-46), ended in divorce. She suffered several miscarriages and eventually adopted four children who later claimed that she treated them harshly. In 1955 she married Pepsi-Cola board chairman Alfred N. Steele; they were married until his death in 1959. Joan was elected to the Pepsi board of directors two days after his fatal heart attack and later became publicity executive.


She remained associated with the firm for the rest of her life. She died of a heart attack in her Manhattan home on May 10, 1977. The terms of her will suggested the depth of the animosity that had developed between her and her children. Twins Cynthia and Cathy each received $77,500, but Christina and Christopher were cut off without a cent «for reasons which are well known to them.» A year after Joan Crawford’s death Christina published «Mommie Dearest», a scathing autobiography of growing up as an abused child. The book was turned into a Hollywood movie in 1981, with Faye Dunaway as the title character. 




Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139

Cursos de inglés en Madrid. Paraninfo.

George Harrison. Biografía. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.


George Harrison MBE (February 25, 1943 – November 29, 2001) was a popular British songwriter, musician and film producer best known as a member of the Beatles. According to Harrison, his birthday was really February 24. His sister has said that their mother wrote in her diary that he was born ten minutes after midnight on February 25.

Harrison married twice. His first wife was the model, Pattie Boyd, for whom Harrison is sometimes supposed to have written the song ‘Something.’ Following their divorce, Boyd married Eric Clapton (said to have written ‘Layla’ for her after their earlier affair). Harrison married for a second time to Olivia Trinidad Arias, in September 1978. The ceremony took place at their home, with Joe Brown acting as best man. They had one son, Dhani Harrison, born the previous month.



Early years

Born in Liverpool, England, and raised as a child at 12 Arnold Grove, he first attended school at Dovedale Infants, just off Penny Lane. Later on, he attended the Liverpool Institute, a ‘smart school’, but was regarded as a poor student, and contemporaries described him as someone who would ‘sit alone in the corner’. In the mid-1950s he met Paul McCartney (also a Liverpool Institute student) and later played lead guitar in the band (initially called the Quarry Men) that eventually became the Beatles.

At the height of the Beatles’ popularity, he was often characterized as the ‘Quiet Beatle’, noted for his introspective manner and his growing interest in Hinduism. In the mid 1960s he began playing the sitar, which influenced the sound of the Beatles’ music in such songs as ‘Norwegian Wood,’ ‘Love You To‘, and ‘Within You Without You‘. His experimentation with the instrument brought him into contact with the sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar, who became a close friend and mentor.

It was his meeting with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi that led him first into meditation. In the summer of 1969, the Beatles produced the single ‘Hare Krishna Mantra’, performed by Harrison and the devotees of the London Radha-Krishna Temple that topped the 10 best-selling record charts throughout UK, Europe, and Asia. The same year, he and fellow Beatle John Lennon met Swami Prabhupada A.C. Bhaktivedanta, the founder of the Hindu sect International Society for Krishna Consciousness. Soon after, Harrison embraced the Hare Krishna tradition and remained associated with them until his death. While, during his lifetime, Harrison had bequeathed to the society his Lethmore Heath ranch, located north of London, he redoubted speculations that he would leave ISKCON a large sum in his will: in fact, he left nothing to the organization.




Role in The Beatles

Harrison was a fluent, inventive and highly accomplished rhythm and lead guitarist, whose influences included Chuck Berry, Carl Perkins and Chet Atkins. Although he was a highly creative soloist, several of his famous Beatles guitar solos were recorded under specific directions from Paul McCartney, who on occasion demanded that Harrison play what he envisioned virtually note-for-note.

A turning point in Harrison’s career came during an American tour in 1965, when his friend David Crosby of The Byrds introduced him to Indian classical music and the work of sitar maestro Ravi Shankar. Harrison quickly became fascinated with the sitar, immersed himself in Indian music and was instrumental in popularising the sitar in particular and Indian music in general in the West. He travelled to India to take lessons from Shankar, bought a sitar himself, and became the first western popular musician to use one on a recording (Norwegian Wood). He championed Shankar with western audiences and was largely responsible for having him included on the bill at the Monterey International Pop Festival in June 1967.




Harrison and Lennon were the first two of the Beatles to try LSD in 1965, when they were unwittingly ‘dosed’ by their dentist at a party in London. For a short time Harrison used the drug regularly and became an enthusiastic advocate, although he later renounced the use of drugs.

Harrison formed a close friendship with Eric Clapton in the late 1960s and they co-wrote the song Badge, which was released on Cream’s farewell album in 1969. This song was the basis for Harrison’s composition for The Beatles’ Abbey Road album, Here Comes The Sun, which was written in Clapton’s back garden. Harrison married model Pattie Boyd in 1966, but in the late 1960s Clapton fell in love with her. Clapton famously poured out his unrequited passion on the landmark Derek & the Dominoes album Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs (1971), but soon after its release Boyd left her husband and she and Clapton subsequently married. Despite this, the two men remained close friends.




Friction between Harrison and McCartney increased markedly during the recording of The White Album, with Harrison threatening to leave the group on several occasions. Harrison’s use of his friend Eric Clapton as the soloist on While My Guitar Gently Weeps is said to have been partly intended as a riposte to Lennon’s offhand suggestion that they could hire Clapton to complete the album in Harrison’s place if he quit. The tension between Harrison and McCartney can be clearly seen in several scenes in the Let It Be documentary film and relations became so strained during the making of the film that Harrison briefly quit the band.

While not the primary composer in the group (Lennon and McCartney wrote the vast bulk of the Beatles’ material), as time went on Harrison’s songwriting improved greatly and his material gradually earned respect from both his fellow Beatles and the public. By the mid-Sixties Lennon and McCartney had become somewhat more accepting of his contributions, although he later said that he always had difficulty getting his songs recorded and only managed to get one or two included on each LP.




Notable Harrison compositions from the Beatles’ oeuvre include: the intricate ‘If I Needed Someone’; ‘I Want To Tell You’; the Indian-influenced ‘Love You To’; the acerbic ‘Taxman’ (later referenced in The Jam’s ‘Start’); the much-maligned ‘Within You, Without You’, which is arguably a foundation stone of the world music genre; ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’, which was strongly influenced by the music of his friend Roy Orbison and featured a guitar solo by his close friend Eric Clapton; ‘Piggies’, which later featured inadvertently in the notorious Charles Manson murder case.

‘Here Comes the Sun’ and ‘Something’ are probably his two best-known Beatles songs. ‘Something’ is considered one of his very best works, and was even covered by Frank Sinatra. His increasing productivity, coupled with his difficulties in getting The Beatles to record his music, meant that by the end of the group’s career he had amassed a considerable stockpile of unreleased material.





After the Beatles split in 1970, Harrison released a number of albums that were critically and commercially successful, both as solo projects and as a member of other groups. After years of being limited in his contributions to the Beatles, he released a large number of the songs he had stockpiled in the first major solo work released after the breakup, All Things Must Pass, the first triple album in rock history. It included the number one hit single ‘My Sweet Lord’, although Harrison was later sued for copyright infringement over the supposed similarities to the 1963 Chiffons single ‘He’s So Fine’. Harrison denied deliberately stealing the song, but he did lose the case in 1976; in the ruling, the court accepted the possibility that Harrison had ‘unconsciously plagiarised’ the Chiffons song as the basis for his own song.

Harrison was probably the first modern musician to organize a major charity concert. His Concert for Bangladesh on August 1, 1971, drew over 40,000 people to two shows in New York’s Madison Square Garden with the intention of aiding the starving refugees from the war in Bangladesh. Classical sitar maestro Ravi Shankar opened the proceedings, which included other popular musicians such as Bob Dylan (in a surprise rare live appearance), Leon Russell, Eric Clapton, Badfinger and Billy Preston. Sadly, however, the concert actually lost money due to expenses.




In addition to his own works, during this time Harrison wrote or produced several hits for Ringo Starr and also appeared on tracks by John Lennon.

Harrison’s next album was Living in the Material World in 1973. ‘Give Me Love’ was a big hit, and ‘Sue Me Sue You Blues’ was a window into the former Beatles’ miserable legal travails, but overall the record was seen as too overtly religious. In 1974 Harrison released Dark Horse and at the same time launched a major tour of the United States. The album was not received well, despite the occasional gem such as ‘So Sad’, and the tour got poor notices due to excessive preachiness and Harrison’s voice being hoarse.

Harrison continued to issue records throughout the rest of the 1970s. The most successful was Thirty Three & 1/3, which was lighter in tone and featured the hits ‘This Song’ (a satire of the ‘My Sweet Lord’ ruling) and the humourous, surrealistic ‘Crackerbox Palace’ (perhaps reflecting his association with members of Monty Python).

Harrsion had formed his own record label, Dark Horse Records, in 1974 and issued a limited number of records by performers such as Splinter, Attitudes and Ravi Shankar. He moved his own output to the label in 1976, once his contract with EMI finished.





Immediately following the murder of his friend and former bandmate John Lennon, Harrison modified the lyrics of a song he had written for Ringo Starr to make it a tribute song to Lennon, ‘All Those Years Ago’, which found substantial radio airplay and continues to be a staple of ‘classic rock’ radio. All the three ex-Beatles performed on it, marking the first time since the break-up in 1970 that the three appeared on one record, although it was expressly a Harrison single. But he released no records for five years after Gone Troppo in 1982 was met with apparent indifference. He returned in 1987 with the album Cloud Nine, co-produced with Jeff Lynne, and enjoyed a hit (#1 in the U.S.; #2 in the U.K) when his cover version of ‘Got My Mind Set On You’ was released as a single. The album got to #8.

During the 1980s, he helped form the Traveling Wilburys with Roy Orbison, Jeff Lynne, Bob Dylan, and Tom Petty when they gathered in Dylan’s garage to quickly record an additional track for a projected Harrison European single release. The record company realised the track (‘Handle With Care’) was too good for its original purpose and asked for a separate album. This had to be completed inside 2 weeks, as Dylan was scheduled to start a tour. Released in October of 1988, under various pseudonyms as half-brothers, supposed sons of Charles Truscott Wilbury, Sr., their album was immediately dubbed as one of the top 100 albums of all time by Rolling Stone magazine.




One of Harrison’s most successful ventures during this period was his involvement in film production through his company Handmade Films. Since childhood The Beatles had been fans of the anarchic humour of The Goons, and Harrison became a dedicated fan of their successors, the Monty Python team. He provided financial backing for the Python film The Life of Brian after the original backers (EMI Films) withdrew, fearing the subject matter of the film was too controversial. Other films produced by Handmade included Mona Lisa, Time Bandits, Shanghai Surprise and Withnail and I. He made several cameo appearances in these movies, including appearing as a nightclub singer in Shanghai Surprise, and as Mr. Papadopolous in Life of Brian. One of his most memorable cameos was in the cult Beatles parody The Rutles, created by ex-Python Eric Idle.





In 1991 Harrison staged a tour of Japan along with his friend Eric Clapton. It was his first tour since the ill-fated 1974 U.S. tour, and although he seemed to enjoy it more there were to be no others. The Live in Japan recording came from these shows.

Throughout the 1990s, Harrison, a former smoker, endured an ongoing battle with cancer, having growths removed first from his throat, then his lung. There was also a December 30, 1999 attempt on his life by a crazed fan, 35 year-old Michael Abram, who broke into his home, Friar Park in Henley-on-Thames, and stabbed him multiple times, puncturing his lung. Harrison and his wife fought the intruder and detained him for the police. Abram, who believed he was possessed by Harrison and was on a ‘mission from God’ to kill him, was later acquitted on grounds of insanity.


George died at the home of a friend in Los Angeles, California on Thursday, November 29, 2001, at the age of 58. His death was ascribed to lung cancer that had metastasized to the brain. He was cremated, and although it was widely reported that his ashes were scattered in the River Ganges, the ceremony was not conducted at the expected time The actual disposition of the ashes has not been publicly disclosed.

After his death, the Harrison family released the following statement: ‘He left this world as he lived in it: conscious of God, fearless of death and at peace, surrounded by family and friends. He often said: ‘Everything else can wait but the search of God can’t wait, and love one another».




His final album, Brainwashed, was completed by Dhani Harrison and Jeff Lynne and released in November 2002.

On November 29, 2002, the first anniversary of his death, the Concert For George saw the two remaining Beatles Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr join many of Harrison’s friends for a special memorial concert at the Royal Albert Hall in London that benefitted the Material World Charitable Foundation. Ravi Shankar’s daughter Anoushka Shankar joined Jeff Lynne in a performance of ‘The Inner Light,’ Clapton and Lynne performed ‘I Want To Tell You’ and ‘If I Needed Someone,’ Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers (with Jools Holland and Sam Brown) performed ‘Taxman’ and ‘I Need You,’ Starr performed ‘Photograph’, members of Monty Python (Michael Palin, Terry Jones, Eric Idle and Terry Gilliam) performed ‘The Lumberjack Song,’ and McCartney and Starr performed ‘For You Blue’. For the finale, all of the artists went back on stage to end with ‘Something,’ ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps,’ ‘My Sweet Lord’ (with Billy Preston on keyboards) and ‘Wah-Wah’. Joe Brown concluded with the Gus Kahn/Isham Jones classic ‘I’ll See You In My Dreams’.

George Harrison and Aaliyah Haughton made UK Chart History when they scored the first, and to this date only, back to back posthumous number one hits when Aaliyah’s ‘More than a Woman’ (Released on 07 January 2002 and topped the chart on 13 January 2002) was followed by George’s ‘My Sweet Lord’ (Re-released on 14 January 2002 and topped the chart on 20 January 2002).

Harrison was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on March 15, 2004.

Album discography

  • Wonderwall Music (Film Soundtrack, 1968)

  • Electronic Sound (1969)

  • All Things Must Pass (1970, remastered 2001)

  • Living in the Material World (1973)

  • Dark Horse (1974)

  • Extra Texture (1975)

  • Thirty Three & 1/3 (1976, remastered 2004)

  • George Harrison (1979, remastered 2004)

  • Somewhere in England (1981, remastered 2004)

  • Gone Troppo (1982, remastered 2004)

  • Cloud Nine (1987, remastered 2004)

  • Traveling Wilburys, Volume 1 (1988)

  • Traveling Wilburys, Volume 3 (1990)

  • Live In Japan (1992, remastered 2004)

  • Brainwashed (2002)




Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139

Cursos de inglés en Madrid. Paraninfo.

BENJAMIN FRANKLIN. Biografía. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.

Benjamin-Franklin -01

Benjamin Franklin Biography.


Born in Boston, Massachusetts on the 17th of January, 1706. Benjamin Franklin assisted his father, a tallow chandler and soap boiler, in his business from 1716 to 1718. In 1718 young Franklin was apprenticed to his brother James, as a printer. Franklin ran away in 1723, heading for Philadelphia where he worked for the printer Sam Keimer. After traveling to London in 1724 to continue learning his trade as a journeyman printer, Franklin returned to Philadelphia in 1726. By 1730, Franklin established himself as an independent master printer.


Benjamin-Franklin -02


Franklin quickly became not only the most prominent printer in the colonies, but the man who shaped and defined colonial and revolutionary Philadelphia. As one who believed in the reasonableness of man and that the phenomena of nature should serve him, Franklin was greatly interested in the improvement of the condition of mankind.

Benjamin-Franklin -03

Benjamin Franklin was the center of the Junto, an elite group of intellectuals who were at the core of Philadelphia politics and cultural life for some time and who became the basis for the American Philosophical Society. He was also instrumental in the improvement of the lighting and paving of Philadelphia and in the organization of a police force, fire companies, Pennsylvania Hospital, the Library Company of Philadelphia, as well as the Academy and College of Philadelphia.


Benjamin-Franklin -04


Franklin was a key political leader at many levels. In 1736 he was chosen clerk of the Pennsylvania Assembly, which position he held until 1751. In 1737 he was made postmaster at Philadelphia. In 1754 he was sent to the Albany Convention where he submitted a plan for colonial unity. He provisioned Braddock’s army and in 1756 was put in charge of the northwestern frontier of the province by the Governor. Twice he was sent to London as agent for the Assembly, 1757-1762 and 1764-1775. With the outbreak of the Revolution, he was sent as Commissioner to France, 1776-1785, and in 1781 was on the commission to make peace with Great Britain. Franklin was a member of the Continental Congress, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, and a framer of both the Pennsylvania and United States Constitutions. Franklin also served as the American Ambassador to France.


Benjamin-Franklin -05


Franklin was the primary founder and shaper of the new institution which became the University of Pennsylvania. His 1749 Proposals Relating to the Education of Youth in Pensilvania were the basis of the Academy which opened two years later. Franklin was responsible for the hiring of William Smith as the first provost in 1754. From 1749 to 1755 Benjamin Franklin was President of the Board of Trustees of the College, Academy and Charitable School of Philadelphia, and he continued as a trustee of the College and then of the University of the State of Pennsylvania until his death in 1790. For most of this period he served as an elected trustee; but from 1785-1788 while President of Pennsylvania’s Supreme Executive Council (the equivalent of governor), Franklin was an ex-officio trustee.

After a long and exceptionally productive life in politics, science, and publishing, Franklin died in 1790 in Philadelphia. He is buried in the Christ Church burial ground.


Benjamin-Franklin -06



Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139

Cursos de inglés en Madrid. Paraninfo.

Mary, Queen of Scots. Biografía. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.


Mary, Queen of Scots. Biography.


Mary, Queen of Scots was Queen of Scotland from 1542 to 1567. She was the daughter of King James V of Scotland and his second wife, Mary of Guise, and was the only surviving legitimate child of the king. The untimely death of her father when she was just six days old made her the Queen of Scots as a tiny infant. In the chaos following her father’s death, Mary’s great-uncle King Henry VIII of England made an effort to secure control of the throne of Scotland but his attempt was thwarted in a timely manner by Mary’s mother who acted as a regent on behalf of her daughter. Her mother, who was of French origin, fixed Mary’s marriage with Francis, the four-year-old heir to the French crown, and sent her to live in France where she was raised in the court of Francis’ father, French King Henry II. She soon married Francis and when her young husband ascended to the throne upon his father’s death, Mary became the queen consort of France. However, the untimely death of her husband left Mary a widow at the age of 18 and she returned to Scotland. Mary’s reign as the Queen of Scots was fraught with political difficulties and her unwise personal choices only complicated the issues.




Childhood & Early Life

  • Mary was born on 8 December 1542 to the King of Scots, James V, and his French second wife, Mary of Guise. She was the only legitimate surviving child of the king who was on his deathbed at the time of her birth. Mary was baptized at the nearby Church of St Michael shortly after she was born.

  • James V died on 14 December 1542 when Mary was just a few days old. Thus she became the Queen of Scots as an infant. It was decided that Scotland would be ruled by regents until Mary became an adult.

  • When Mary was six months old, she was betrothed to Prince Edward, the son of King Henry VIII of England. However, the engagement was eventually called off due to certain religious and political issues.

  • Since Mary’s mother was French, she readily agreed when the French king, Henry II proposed that Mary be married to his son, the Dauphin Francis. Following the betrothal, Mary was sent to live in the French court under the care of her father-in-law. Mary and Francis reportedly developed a close bond from the day they met.

  • Mary received a good upbringing in France and was trained in horsemanship, falconry and needlework. She also learned French, Italian, Latin, Spanish, and Greek, and was competent in prose and poetry.

  • She married Francis in 1558. Her father-in-law, Henry II, died in 1559 and her 15 year old husband Francis ascended to the throne as the King Francis II and Mary, at 16, became his queen consort.

  • Francis II died of an ear infection on 5 December 1560 leaving Mary a widow at 18. Francis’ younger brother Charles inherited the throne and Mary returned to Scotland nine months after her husband’s death.



Accession & Reign

  • She faced numerous challenges upon her return to Scotland in 1561. Having spent the major part of her early life in France, Mary was unaccustomed to life in Scotland.

  • At that time, Scotland was torn between Catholic and Protestant factions, and Mary’s illegitimate half-brother, the Earl of Moray, was a leader of the Protestants. Mary, as a devout Catholic, was regarded with suspicion by many of her Protestant subjects, and her tolerance towards Protestants disappointed the Catholics.

  • She fell in love with her English-born first cousin Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley and married him in 1565. This match was considered scandalous by both the Catholic and Protestant factions as Mary and Lord Darnley were first cousins. This marriage also turned her Protestant half-brother against her as Lord Darnley was also a Catholic.

  • The marriage ran into problems from the very beginning as Lord Darnley proved to be a mean and vicious man. In March 1566, Darnley, along with a group of Protestant nobles brutally murdered Mary’s Italian secretary, David Rizzio, in front of Mary who was heavily pregnant at that time. Darnley suspected that his wife was having an affair with Rizzio.

  • Following this incidence, Mary’s marriage with Darnley broke down. When Darnley was found dead under mysterious circumstances in February 1567, murder was suspected, and Mary, along with James Hepburn, the Earl of Bothwell, Moray, Secretary Maitland, and the Earl of Morton came under suspicion.

  • Within three months of Darnley’s death, Mary married the main suspect in her husband’s murder—James Hepburn, Earl of Bothwell. This marriage was considered outrageous and the public turned against her. In July 1567, Mary was compelled to abdicate the throne in favor of her infant son.

  • Mary was imprisoned in Lochleven Castle but managed to escape in 1568. She fled to England, seeking protection from her cousin, Elizabeth I. However, Elizabeth was suspicious of Mary’s intentions and had her imprisoned.


Personal Life & Legacy

  • Mary’s first marriage was to Francis II of France which took place in 1558. It is not known whether the marriage was consummated or not as Francis II died very young, at the age of 16.

  • A few years after the death of Francis II, Mary married her first cousin Lord Darnley in 1565. This marriage was problematic from the very beginning though it produced one son, James VI and I. Darnley died under mysterious circumstances in 1567.

  • A few months after the death of Darnley, she married the prime suspect in his alleged murder, James Hepburn, Earl of Bothwell.

  • After being imprisoned by Elizabeth I, Mary was kept under strict surveillance. Her imprisonment would last for 19 long years.

  • In 1586, Mary corresponded with Anthony Babington who was plotting to depose Elizabeth. The letters fell into the hands of Elizabeth’s spymaster Francis Walsingham, and Elizabeth began to see Mary as a threat. Thus Mary was brought to trial, found guilty of treason, and sentenced to death.

  • Mary was executed by beheading in Fotheringhay Castle, Northamptonshire, on 8 February, 1587. She was 44 years old.



Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139

Cursos de inglés en Madrid. Paraninfo.

Judy Garland. Biografía. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.


A Brief Biography

  Judy Garland was born Frances Ethel Gumm on June 10, 1922, in Grand Rapids, Minnesota, and immediately nicknamed «Baby.» Her father managed the town movie theatre; her mother accompanied silent films on the piano. Both parents performed, as did Baby’s two older sisters, and she joined the family act on December 26, 1924, in a song-and-dance routine with her sisters and her own solo, a scheduled one-chorus arrangement of «Jingle Bells.» To the delight of the audience, Baby refused to leave the stage and went into reprise after reprise of the latter number; her grandmother finally had to walk on from the wings and carry the child offstage as she protested, «I wanna sing some more!»

     The family moved to California in 1926, and over the next nine years, «The Gumm Sisters» made hundreds of stage and radio appearances. In 1929, they were seen in The Big Revue (Mayfair Pictures) and then sang in three other «Vitaphone Varieties» shorts for First National: A Holiday in Storyland, The Wedding of Jack and Jill, and Bubbles. By 1932, Baby was the center of the act, drawing astounded, astounding response from the public and critics alike. In 1934, the Los Angeles Evening Express compared the scope and depth of her talent to that of legendary actress Sarah Bernhardt and offered, «Little Frances…sang in a way that produced in the audience sensations that haven’t been equaled in years. She must have the divine spark to be able to sing as she did….».

     By 1935, Baby had been rechristened Judy Garland — the last name chosen by vaudevillian George Jessel, the first her own selection from a contemporary Hoagy Carmichael/Sammy Lesser song. Her sisters bowed out of the act that same year, and Judy signed an M-G-M contract. The studio first tested her appeal in a 1936 one-reel exhibitor’s short in which she was paired with another teenage singer, Edna Mae Durbin. Response to both girls was strong enough to spur production (a month later) of a second one-reeler, Every Sunday. Inexplicably, Durbin’s Metro contract was allowed to lapse; she was immediately signed by Universal, which changed her first name to Deanna and made her a film star.
     M-G-M, however, was far from nonplussed. They’d already arranged a showcase loanout for Judy at Twentieth Century-Fox (Pigskin Parade, 1936) and then cast her in Broadway Melody of 1938 (1937). Her rendition in that film of «Dear Mr. Gable: You Made Me Love You» created a sensation; she walked away with the reviews and won a Decca recording contract. The studio began immediate, intensive plans for her future. The Wizard Of Oz (1939) was paramount among the vehicles in development, but during its preparation, she made four other features. The earliest of these, Thoroughbreds Don’t Cry (1937), cast her for the first time with Mickey Rooney; they’d actually met four years earlier as fellow students at Lawlor’s Professional School.

     Judy next costarred with Allan Jones, Fanny Brice, and Billie Burke in Everybody Sing, and went on to work with Freddie Bartholomew, Mary Astor, and Walter Pidgeon in Listen, Darling (both 1938). But the on-and-off-screen chemistry between Garland and Rooney had already been noted, and the two were purposely and purposefully reunited when a role was created for her in the fourth of the «Judge Hardy’s Family» series, Love Finds Andy Hardy (1938).
     Their coupling had the earmarks of such success that — even before the picture was released — Metro songwriter Arthur Freed began plans to launch his own career as a film producer by costarring the duo in a film adaptation of the hit Broadway musical, Babes In Arms. By autumn 1938, its production was scheduled to follow Judy’s Listen, Darling and six months of adventures in Oz.

     Oz and Babes In Arms led Judy to Top Ten box office prominence in 1940; she appeared on the list in 1941 and 1945 as well. There were two more «Hardy» films with Rooney (Andy Hardy Meets Debutante [1940] and Life Begins for Andy Hardy [1941]) and three additional musical pictures in which they costarred: Strike Up the Band (1940), Babes On Broadway (1941), and Girl Crazy (1943). Judy also played the title roles in Little Nellie Kelly (1940), Ziegfeld Girl (1941), and Presenting Lily Mars (1943). A year earlier, she’d received her first solo billing above the title in For Me And My Gal — proof positive that she had become such an artistic and box office sensation that no other name was required to bring in the cash customers. M-G-M began to commission top-flight vehicles for her and, in quick succession, she appeared in such subsequent screen classics as Meet Me In St. Louis (1944), The Clock (1945), The Harvey Girls (1946), Till The Clouds Roll By (1947), The Pirate and Easter Parade (both 1948), In The Good Old Summertime (1949), and Summer Stock (1950). She also did «guest» appearances in the all-star musicals Thousands Cheer (1943), Ziegfeld Follies (1946), and Words and Music (1948).

     Additionally, between 1936 and 1950, Judy recorded over eighty sides for Decca, made over two hundred radio appearances, and — during World War II — served as a tireless force among the entertainers who performed for stateside servicemen and women. The cumulative effects of such a work schedule led to both emotional and physical exhaustion for the diminutive Garland, and (after she’d completed twenty-eight feature films in fourteen years), M-G-M dissolved her contract in 1950.
     In April 1951, «Baby Gumm» returned to her roots with a sensational four-week stage engagement at the London Palladium. The subsequent tour led straight to Broadway; in March 1952, Judy was presented with a special Antoinette Perry «Tony» Award for breaking the all-time vaudeville box office and attendance records during a nineteen week engagement at the legendary Palace Theatre in New York.


The continuing phenomenon of «Judy Garland Live» would ultimately result in over 1100 stage, nightclub, and concert appearances between 1951 and 1969. There were acclaimed returns to the Palace in 1956 and 1967; a precedent-shattering engagement as the first popular singer to play the Metropolitan Opera House in 1959; eight record-breaking Las Vegas engagements (in 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1962, 1965, and 1967); United States appearances everywhere from the Hollywood Bowl to the Newport Jazz Festival; international successes in Amsterdam, Paris, Sydney, and Germany, Ireland, and Scotland; and the immediately historic «Judy At Carnegie Hall» in 1961. The two-record set of that performance won an unprecedented five Grammy Awards (including Album of the Year and Best Female Vocal Performance) and remained on the charts for 97 weeks — 13 of those in the number one position.


Judy returned to the screen as well, winning a best actress Oscar nomination for A Star Is Born (Warner Bros./1954). There would be a similar citation as best supporting actress for Judgment At Nuremberg (United Artists) in 1961; Judy had already been presented with a special miniature «juvenile» Oscar in 1940 for her work in Oz and Babes in Arms. She did another straight dramatic role for Stanley Kramer in A Child Is Waiting (United Artists/1963).
     Garland’s television debut in 1955 attracted the largest audience to that time for a «spectacular» program. She went on to nearly 60 other TV appearances, including acclaimed «specials» in 1962 and 1963 and her own series in 1963-64. (Her individual telecasts and Garland herself garnered a total of 10 Emmy nominations.) In addition to film soundtracks for Columbia (Pepe/1960) and Warner Bros. (Gay Purr-ee/1962), Judy cut a dozen albums during a ten-year tenure with Capitol Records (1955-1965) — including the soundtrack for her final film, I Could Go On Singing (United Artists/1963).

'The Wizard of Oz' Film - 1939...No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only Mandatory Credit: Photo by Courtesy Everett Collection / Rex Features ( 911680a ) 'The Wizard of Oz' - Judy Garland 'The Wizard of Oz' Film - 1939

     Judy Garland’s final concert appearances in March 1969 won ten-minute standing ovations in Stockholm and Copenhagen. She died in her London home on June 22, 1969, of an accidental overdose of prescription medication.
      Since her death, her professional reputation and legend have only grown — fired by the continued clamor from all ages for her films, television shows, and recordings.
     Judy is the mother of entertainers Liza Minnelli (born 1946) and Lorna Luft (born 1952) and photographer Joe Luft (born 1955). She was married five times: to composer/conductor David Rose (1941-44), film director Vincente Minnelli (1945-51), producer Sid Luft (1952-1965), actor Mark Herron (1965-1966), and musician/entrepreneur Mickey Deans (1969).




Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139

Cursos de inglés en Madrid

John Wayne. Biografía. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.



John Wayne (26 May 1907-11 June 1979 was an actor

He was born Marion Robert Morrison  in Winterset, Iowa, the son of Clyde Leonard Morrison, a pharmacist clerk, and Mary Alberta Brown. In 1914 Wayne moved with his parents and younger brother, Robert Emmett Morrison, to southern California, where his father tried farming near Lancaster for two years before settling in Glendale, just north of Los Angeles. In 1925 Wayne enrolled as a pre-law student at the University of Southern California on a football scholarship.


Denied renewal of his scholarship after two years, Wayne dropped out of USC and was hired full time as a prop man by the William Fox Studio, where he had worked the previous two summers. For the next two years Wayne also hired out as an extra, to include several films directed by John Ford. It was not Ford, however, but director Raoul Walsh who chose the good-looking, 6′ 4″ prop man known then as Marion «Duke» Morrison for the lead role in Fox’s epic western, The Big Trail (1930). Morrison’s name was changed to John Wayne and instant fame seemed assured. But the film proved a financial failure, and after two more films for Fox his contract was dropped. For the remainder of the depression decade, Wayne was relegated to smaller parts in several productions (even playing a corpse in The Deceiver [1931]) and starring roles in some four dozen low-budgeted B films, most of them westerns for «poverty row» studios Monogram and Republic. He was halfway through a Republic contract for eight «Three Mesquiteer» westerns when John Ford offered him the lead role of the Ringo Kid in Stagecoach (1939). This classic western revived Wayne’s career and initiated one of Hollywood’s most inspired star-director relationships.


By the time of the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Wayne was thirty-four, married to Josephine Saenz (since 1933), and the father of four children. Legally exempt from military service during the course of the war, Wayne pursued building his career with an assortment of westerns, combat films, and screen romances opposite such leading ladies as Marlene Dietrich (three films), Joan Crawford, and Jean Arthur.

Averaging nearly four films per year from 1940 to 1945, Wayne alternated between routine Republic productions and larger-budgeted films of major studios, for which he often took second billing to more established stars. Most of Wayne’s prodigious fare remained undistinguished, with the possible exceptions of Cecil B. De Mille’s Reap the Wild Wind (1942) and John Ford’s The Long Voyage Home (1940) and They Were Expendable (1945). By the end of 1945, meanwhile, Wayne was divorced, and in January 1946 he married a would-be Mexican actress he had met in 1941, Esperanza Diaz Ceballos Morrison. Theirs proved a stormy relationship that ended in a bitter divorce trial in October 1953. The next year Wayne married Peruvian actress Pilar Palette Weldy; they had three children before they separated in the mid-1970s.


Beginning with Howard Hawks’s classic epic western Red River (1948), the late forties marked a turning point in both Wayne’s popularity and development as an actor. The first of several successful collaborations with director Hawks, notably Rio Bravo (1959), Red River highlighted an unprecedentedly powerful performance by Wayne as an aging, violently driven cattle baron. The following year The Sands of Iwo Jima (1949) earned Wayne his first Oscar nomination for his performance as the film’s tough-minded but duty-bound combat leader, a role that from The Flying Tigers (1942) to The Green Berets (1968) was second only to that of the western hero in Wayne’s evolving screen image. John Ford combined Wayne’s military and western personae in three cavalry-Indian films: Fort Apache (1948), She Wore a Yellow Ribbon (1949), and Rio Grande (1950). The second of these was distinguished by Wayne’s moving performance as the elderly Captain Nathan Brittles. For Rio Grande Ford paired Wayne with Maureen O’Hara, thereafter the star’s most frequent leading lady. Wayne’s romancing of O’Hara was the centerpiece of Ford’s The Quiet Man (1952), an Irish battle-of-the-sexes romp and an engaging departure from Wayne’s usual action fare. But it was in his next western for Ford, The Searchers (1956), that Wayne delivered what is commonly regarded as the finest performance of his career as the alienated, Indian-hating Ethan Edwards. A 1982 survey of international critics by Sight and Sound ranked The Searchers among the ten greatest films of all time.


Wayne’s growing credibility as a screen actor coincided with his skyrocketing popularity. In 1949 he broke into the exhibitors’ annual list of the nation’s top ten box-office stars, where he remained for all but one of a record-breaking twenty-six consecutive years (ranking number one in four of those years). Sheer star appeal was usually enough to help ensure the success of Wayne’s worst films, as evidenced by his widely ridiculed Genghis Khan epic, The Conqueror, having grossed nearly as much as The Searchers in 1956. Wayne’s marketability also provided him considerable leverage in script approval and related matters affecting the kinds of roles he played. Beginning with Angel and the Badman (1946), Wayne was among the first of his generation of film stars to produce many of his own films, and with the formation of Wayne-Fellows and then Batjak Productions, he produced other films as well. His own productions seldom approached the quality of his best works as an actor, and some were given to excessive displays of his political conservatism, as in the anticommunist Big Jim McClain (1952) and equally didactic The Alamo (1960). Wayne invested heavily and debuted as director (with some assistance from John Ford) for The Alamo; but initial box-office returns proved disappointing, and despite promotion efforts for Oscar recognition, only the film’s soundtrack was awarded.


Wayne quickly rebounded with a steady succession of profitable films, beginning with the rambunctious comedy-adventure North to Alaska (1960) and including his last classic western for Ford, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence (1962). Several epics of the early 1960s featured him as part of an all-star cast in bit roles. Although the western ceased to dominate Hollywood’s output as it had in the 1950s, it became more than ever Wayne’s stock in trade. Increasingly he played characters commensurate with his own advancing years and reinforcing his self-image of a traditionalist frequently at odds with modern trends. While Wayne remained at his best when directed by veterans such as Ford, Hawks, and Henry Hathaway, his own Batjak productions from McLintock (1963) to Cahill, United States Marshal (1973) represented the clearest expressions of his conservative defense of rugged individualism, personal and family loyalty, and other values he associated with America’s frontier heritage. Politically outspoken off screen, Wayne had actively embraced the attack on Hollywood leftists during the McCarthy period and thereafter generally supported Republican policies and candidates; partisanship did not, however, preclude his invitational attendance at Jimmy Carter’s preinaugural gala or supporting President Carter’s Panama Canal treaty. The Green Berets (1968), which Wayne produced and directed as well as starred in, vividly expressed his support of the Vietnam War at a time when other filmmakers refused to broach the issue. Reviewers typically attacked Wayne’s hawkish bias, but the film was the tenth largest moneymaker in 1968.


Political differences mattered little the next year when audiences and critics alike warmed to Wayne’s Oscar-winning performance as the cantankerous one-eyed marshal, Rooster Cogburn, in True Grit (1969). Of Wayne’s remaining dozen screen appearances, mostly formulaic westerns and two ill-received attempts at the currently popular crime genre (McQ [1974] and Brannigan [1975]), only his last film, The Shootist (1976), generated much favorable notice. This elegiac western about a gunfighter dying of cancer was a grim reminder of Wayne’s real-life battle with the disease that he had apparently won in the mid-1960s but would soon be fighting again. Two years after making The Shootist Wayne underwent open-heart surgery and in early 1979 was operated on for stomach cancer. Shortly after an appearance at the Academy Awards ceremony in April to present the Oscar for best picture, Wayne succumbed to what he had termed «the Big C.» He died at the UCLA Medical Center.


«In an age of few heroes,» President Jimmy Carter eulogized on Wayne’s death, «he was the genuine article.» Two weeks earlier, Wayne was awarded a congressional gold medal–with the inscription «John Wayne, American.» These and similarly worded tributes speak to Wayne’s iconic importance as a celebrity whose public life had become inseparable from the heroic screen image he had cultivated in a career that spanned five decades. Ideological hostility had dissipated somewhat since the mid-1970s, and in his many interviews and public appearances Wayne appeared less strident and more good natured, if still unwavering and forthright, in voicing his traditionalist beliefs. Short of according him the status of a great actor, colleagues commonly attested to his professionalism and film critics/scholars increasingly credited the emotive power of his unique screen presence as indispensable to the artistic merits of his best films.




Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139

Cursos de inglés en Madrid

Marlon Brando. Biografía. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.



Christian Brando, the troubled son of the late screen legend Marlon Brando, has died in Los Angeles from complications of pneumonia.

The 49-year-old was the eldest of the Oscar-winning actor’s nine children and his turbulent life bore all the traits of the troubles that have dogged the tragic family.

In 1990, he was arrested following the death of his half-sister’s boyfriend. Mr Brando, then 32, eventually pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter in the shooting of 26-year-old Dag Drollet, Cheyenne Brando’s lover and the father of her unborn child.


Marlon Brando posted a £2?million bond for his son and later offered rambling and emotional testimony pleading for leniency. Brando was given a 10-year prison sentence but served less than five years.

Born in Los Angeles to Marlon Brando’s first wife, the Calcutta-born actress Anna Kashfi, Christian was a toddler when the couple divorced.

After a protracted legal battle Kashfi was awarded custody of her son, but the order was revoked five years later when a judge said that her «reliance on drugs and alcohol» contributed to an uncontrollable temper.


After living with Marlon Brando’s older sister, Christian went to live with his father, who by that time had married twice more and had three more children. He was raised by nannies and sent to boarding school.

But while the actor was out of the country filming Last Tango in Paris, Kashfi allegedly kidnapped Christian and took him to Baja California, in Mexico. The boy was eventually found living in a tent and ill with bronchitis.

Christian dropped out of school and began drinking and using LSD. He tried a variety of jobs including welder and tree trimmer and lived for a time in Alaska, piloting a barge for a fish processor during the summers.


But he lived for years with his father in Brando’s hilltop estate. In 1990, Christian threatened Drollet with a gun after Cheyenne confided that he had been beating her. Christian claimed that as he turned to leave, his arm was outstretched and Drollet tried to grab the gun which went off.

In an interview with The Times, Christian said that later revelations about Cheyenne’s mental health made him later question whether she was ever beaten by Drollet. «I feel like a complete chump for believing her,» he said.


In 2005, he was charged with two counts of spousal abuse against his then-wife Deborah. He was placed on three years probation and ordered to undergo drug and alcohol rehabilitation.

In 1995, Cheyenne hanged herself at her mother’s home outside Papeete, the French Polynesian capital on the island of Tahiti. She was 25.

Cheyenne was the daughter of Brando and Tarita Teriipaia, who were married after appearing together in the 1962 film Mutiny on the Bounty. Cheyenne’s son, Tuki, was being raised in Tahiti by Drollet’s parents.

Marlon Brando died in 2004.



Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139

Cursos de inglés en Madrid