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Howard Marion Crawford

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Years active  1935–69
Name  Howard Marion-Crawford
Role  Character actor

Full Name  Howard Francis Marion-Crawford
Born  17 January 1914 (1914-01-17) London, England
Died  November 24, 1969, Chelsea, London, United Kingdom
Spouse  Mary Wimbush (m. 1946–1954)
Children  Harold Francis Marion-Crawford, Charles Marion-Crawford
Movies and TV shows  Sherlock Holmes, The Face of Fu Manchu, The Blood of Fu Manchu, The Castle of Fu Manchu, The Man in the White Suit
Similar People  Harry Alan Towers, Don Sharp, Mary Wimbush, Alexander Mackendrick, Jesús Franco

Howard Marion-Crawford (17 January 1914 – 24 November 1969), the grandson of writer F. Marion Crawford, was an English character actor, best known for his portrayal of Dr. Watson in the 1954 television adaptation of Sherlock Holmes. In 1948, Marion-Crawford had played Holmes in a radio adaptation of "The Adventure of the Speckled Band", making him one of the few actors to portray both Holmes and Watson. He is also known for his portrayal of Dr. Petrie in a series of low budget Fu Manchu films in the 1960s, and playing Paul Temple in the BBC Radio serialisations.


Howard Marion-Crawford Howard MarionCrawford Wikipedia


Howard Marion-Crawford was the son of an officer of the Irish Guards killed during the First World War. After attending Clifton College Crawford attended RADA and began a career in radio. His first film appearance was in Brown on Resolution (1935). During the Second World War he enlisted in the Irish Guards, his father's old regiment, but soon suffered a major injury to one of his legs that caused him to be invalided out of the service. After he recovered, he enlisted in the Royal Air Force, where he became a navigator, and rose to the rank of sergeant.

He resumed his acting career in both film in The Rake's Progress (1945) and was a regular broadcaster in BBC Radio Drama including playing the fictional detective Paul Temple in several series by Francis Durbridge. Among his film appearances are the character of Cranford in The Man in the White Suit (1951) and a British medical officer in Lawrence of Arabia (1962). One of his last roles was as another military officer, Sir George Brown, in Tony Richardson's The Charge of the Light Brigade (1968).

He often played "blusterers", "old duffers" and upper class military types, appearing as guest performer in television programmes like The Avengers, and three roles with Patrick McGoohan in the television series Danger Man: the 1964 episodes "No Marks for Servility" and "Yesterday's Enemies" and the 1965 episode "English Lady Takes Lodgers".

Personal life

Marion-Crawford was married four times. Early in the Second World War, he was married to Jeanne Scott-Gunn, with whom he had a single son, Harold Francis Marion-Crawford. In 1946, he married the actress Mary Wimbush, with whom he had another son, Charles. His later marriages were to June Elliot and Germaine Tighe-Umbers.

A large man with a very distinctive booming voice, known to his friends and family as "Boney", Howard Marion-Crawford had a lot of talent and acting came easily to him. Unfortunately, this sometimes led to his being unreliable and his later years were a struggle. Plagued by ill health later in life, he died from a mixture of alcohol and sleeping pills in 1969.


Howard Marion-Crawford Wikipedia