93 (passed away Jun. 25th, 2015)
Feb. 6th, 1922
London, England, UK
Patrick Macnee's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
The British actor Patrick Macnee was born in 1922 in London, England, into a wealthy and eccentric family. His father, Daniel Macnee, was a race horse trainer, who drank and gambled away the family fortune, leaving young Patrick to be raised by his lesbian mother, Dorothea Mary, and her female lover.
Shortly after graduating from Eton (from which he was almost expelled for running a gambling ring), Macnee first appeared on stage and made his film debut as an extra in Pygmalion (1938). His career was interrupted by World War II, during which he served in the Royal Navy. After military service, Macnee attended the Webber Douglas School of Dramatic Art in London on scholarship. He also resumed his stage and film career, with bit parts such as Young Jacob Marley in Scrooge (1951). Disappointed with his limited roles, Macnee left England for Canada and the United States.
In 1954, he went to Broadway with an Old Vic troupe and later moved on to Hollywood, where he made occasional television and film appearances until returning to England in 1959. Once back home, he took advantage of his producing experience in Canada to become co-producer of the British television series "Winston Churchill: The Valiant Years" (1960). Shortly thereafter, Macnee landed the role that brought him worldwide fame and popularity in the part of John Steed, in the classic British television series "The Avengers" (1961). His close identification with this character limited his career choices after the cancellation of the series in 1969, prompting him to reprise the role in "The New Avengers" (1976), which, though popular, failed to recapture the magic of the original series. During the 1980s and 1990s, Macnee became a familiar face on American television in such series as "Gavilan" (1982), "Empire" (1984), "Thunder in Paradise" (1994) and "Night Man" (1997). In the past decade, Macnee has also made several audio recordings of book fiction
A statement on the actor's website read: "Patrick Macnee was a popular figure in the television industry.
"He was at home wherever in the world he found himself. He had a knack for making friends, and keeping them.
"Wherever he went, he left behind a trove of memories and good wishes.” .
- Became a United States citizen in 1959. In addition to his acting career, Macnee worked as a television producer in Britain, The United States, and Canada. He is considered to be one of the pioneers of Canadian television.
- During his run on _"The Avengers" (1961)_ (qv), Macnee's only weapon was an umbrella sword; he was rarely if ever seen carrying or using a gun. Macnee has stated in interviews that he insisted on this, because he'd seen enough carnage in combat during his military service in World War II.
- Along with 'Christopher Lee (I)' (qv) and 'Jean Simmons (I)' (qv), he is one of only three surviving cast members of Sir 'Laurence Olivier' (qv)'s _Hamlet (1948)_ (qv).
- He was born to a wealthy and extraordinarily eccentric family. As his father (Daniel Macnee), a race horse trainer, drank and gambled the family's money away, his mother (Dorothea Mary Henry) took young Patrick to live with her lover, Evelyn, in a huge mansion in southern England, where he wore kilts until the age of 11.
- Was expelled from Eton for bookmaking.
- He was forced to retire from acting due to problems with arthritis, but can still do voice over work.
- Two children from first marriage: Rupert ('Rupert Macnee' (qv)) and Jenny.
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