Saturday, May 10, 2008

Monty Woolley - "The Man Who Came to Dinner"

Monty Woolley was a professor at Yale University before he entered the acting field in the 1930s. He was usually cast as a sophisticated person with high education, but was also known for his acid-tongued wit.

His most famous role is that of 'Sheridan Whiteside', a radio lecturer who, while visiting a small town, is injured in a fall on the steps of the house of his hostess, and is forced to stay with that family for several months while on the mend. The role was first played in the Broadway play, "The Man Who Came to Dinner", and then made into a movie in 1942. Mr. Woolley played the role in both productions.

Mr. Woolley died in 1963, and I was not even familiar with his acting at that time, as I was a youngster and never saw any movies in which he appeared. It was later, in the 1980s, when I saw him as 'Sheridan Whiteside' and then sought out other movies in which he appeared.

I was able to buy this small signed photo from a reputable autograph dealer in the early 1990s. Mr. Woolley was said to have kept a supply of small photos with him, so he'd have one ready to sign if asked.

Click here for a clip of his portrayal in "The Man Who Came to Dinner".

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