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Alfred J Goulding

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Years active  1917-1959
Siblings  Elsa Goulding
Children  Alf Goulding Jr.
Role  Film director
Name  Alfred Goulding

Alfred J. Goulding silenthollywoodcomsitebuilderimages51419461x5
Born  January 26, 1896 (1896-01-26) Melbourne, Australia
Occupation  Film director Screenwriter
Died  April 25, 1972, Hollywood, California, United States
Spouse  Suzanne Raphael, Diana Seaby
Movies  A Chump at Oxford, Haunted Spooks, From Hand to Mouth, Ring Up the Curtain, By the Sad Sea Waves
Similar People  Snub Pollard, Wilfred Lucas, Bebe Daniels, Forrester Harvey, Hal Roach

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Alfred John "Alf" Goulding (January 26, 1885 – April 25, 1972) was an Australian-born vaudevillian, who became an American film director and screenwriter. He directed 182 films between 1917 and 1959 and is credited with having Harold Lloyd wear his trademark glasses.



He was born on January 26, 1885 in Melbourne, Australia to Francis Thomas Goulding (1860-1940) and Margaret Davies Walsh. He was the youngest brother of the opera singer Elsa Goulding.

As children, he and his brother and sister performed with Pollard’s Lilliputian Opera Company, a popular Australian juvenile opera company that travelled Australasia, the Orient and North America extensively. By 1900 he was regularly singled out in reviews as one of the Company’s most entertaining performers: "Master Alf. Goulding came in for a lion's share of applause, and he certainly won it fairly in his comic pieces." By 1907, Goulding was stage managing for the company. He arrived with the Pollard troupe in the US in 1908. According to Brent Walker, Goulding then travelled to Britain where he worked on stage with Stan Laurel, for several years, after which he returned to the US. By 1911 he was performing on stage in North America and directing his own stage shows, sometimes in collaboration with former Pollard performers Daphne Pollard and Harry "Snub" Pollard.

In 1912, he broke into movies, acting and then after 1916, directing two reel comedies for Fox. He then joined Hal Roach, directing many Harold Lloyd shorts.Throughout the 1920s and early 1930s his work output was significant, and he directed the likes of Harry Langdon, Norma Shearer and Fatty Arbuckle, in addition to films starring former Pollard players Daphne Pollard and Snub Pollard Between 1935 and 1938 he worked in Britain again. In 1939 he re-entered the United States illegally and was jailed as an alien.

Goulding wrote and directed a wartime film made in Australia in 1942, A Yank in Australia, which was not a success. His final film was "Laffing Time" which he directed in 1959. He had by this time, over 180 directorial credits to his name.

He died in Hollywood, California from pneumonia on April 5, 1972.


  1. He married Gladys Watson (1891-1920) on October 28, 1911 in Seattle, Washington. She died on April 19, 1920 in Hollywood, California.
  2. On June 17, 1920 in Glendale, California, he married Hazel Marcella O'Brien (1892-1935) and they divorced around 1925.
  3. His third marriage was on December 8, 1925 when he married Audrey H. Faught (1910-1972) in Vancouver, Canada. She was 25 years younger than him. They divorced in 1933, she claimed that he beat her and drank excessively. She was awarded custody of their three children.
  4. He married actress Diana Seaby (1914-1963) (born Dorothea Lillian Siglow) in Mexico in 1934. They married again in San Bernardino, California on July 30, 1934 to ensure that the marriage was legal in the United States. She was 29 years younger than him. They divorced in 1941 in Dade County, Florida.
  5. He appears to have married Suzanne Raphael in 1941 and they divorced by 1952.
  6. He married his last wife, Rita J. Lunniss in 1952 in Middlesex, England who later changed her name to Betty Goulding (1927-1980).


Alfred J. Goulding Wikipedia