Absolute Pandemonium: The Autobiography
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Memoir from national treasure Brian Blessed. There is no one quite like Brian Blessed. He's an actor, film star, trained undertaker, unlikely diplomat, secret romantic, martial artist and mountaineer. He's also a brilliant storyteller who will - and you must brace yourself - simply leap out of the story at you.
Ready? Then listen to Absolute Pandemonium, and you'll be taken on a riotous journey from his childhood, growing up the son of a miner in Goldthorpe, to finding fame in Z-Cars. You'll see Brian falling for Katharine Hepburn on the set of The Trojan Women, suffering wires strapped round his wotsits as he was hoisted into the heavens on Flash Gordon, almost causing an international incident when meeting the Emperor and Empress of Japan, and winning round George Lucas to get the role of Boss Nass on Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace.
Along the way he takes secret revenge on headmistress Mrs. Jarman and her very big bottom; punches Harold Pinter; loves and hates Peter O'Toole; woos his beautiful wife, Hildegard Neil; and braves the shocking death toll on cosy TV drama My Family and Other Animals.
Crammed with anecdotes from his illustrious career, this is a funny, warm-hearted, life-affirming, LOUD, and unique memoir from a much-loved figure.
governments to ask you if you’d like to be Master of Ceremonies at the official handover of Hong Kong.’ The sense of relief hit me like a bloody freight train. What had I been thinking? ‘I see. Well, yes, I’d be delighted. Tell me more, my dear fellow.’ ‘As I said, we’d like you to be the Master of Ceremonies when Britain hands Hong Kong over to China. We’ve already taken the liberty of asking the BBC if you can be spared and they say they’re prepared to juggle the schedule for you.’ I was
Elizabeth Spriggs in The Cherry Orchard at Birmingham Rep. Birmingham liked to cast me in, shall we say, slightly more senior roles. 11. With the Demon Actor O’Toole in Country Dance in 1969 – enormous fun to film once we’d sorted a few things out. 12. O’Toole as Macbeth. The press butchered him and never in my life have I witnessed such courage as O’Toole showed in finishing the run. 13. The first ever photograph of Z Cars. Joe Brady (as Jock Weir) and myself (as Fancy Smith) outside the
what qualifications I had, I would say: ‘Oh yes, I left with eight O levels. I’ll probably just do the four A levels before drama school. How about you?’ Harry Dobson thought this was hilarious, but it annoyed him slightly too. ‘You shouldn’t feel like you have to lie to them, Brian. Just because you left school at fifteen and don’t have any qualifications doesn’t mean they’re better than you. You know more about life.’ Do you know, the first time I ever encountered anyone from the Bristol Old
asked him very nicely, he’d move his biceps up and down his arms for you. He could be the perfect clown as well as the perfect actor. His personality was staggering. His impressive plasticity of movement could be mirrored verbally, of course, in that he seemed to have voices within voices within voices, and it was while playing Hamlet that this all came together. He was at the height of his powers as Hamlet, and absolutely nothing went to waste. He bounced off the flaming walls! The best Hamlet
round. Unbelievable! Eventually, the referee stopped the fight in the seventh round, by which time Bruce was smashed to smithereens. It wouldn’t be allowed to happen today. Bruce was rushed straight to hospital, where he actually spent the next fifteen months receiving treatment. FIFTEEN MONTHS! The boxing world reported they had never seen such courage. I remember that, after the fight, the entire street congregated outside. We just stood there in shock. ‘What happened, Dad?’ I asked. ‘Bruce