Ray Milland
Actor, director
Ray Milland
Ray Milland was a Welsh actor and director. His screen career ran from 1929 to 1985, and he is best remembered for his Academy Award–winning portrayal of an alcoholic writer in The Lost Weekend (1945), a sophisticated leading man opposite a corrupt John Wayne in Reap the Wild Wind (1942), the murder-plotting husband in Dial M for Murder (1954), and as Oliver Barrett III in Love Story (1970).
Biography
Ray Milland's personal information overview.
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Hollywood star Ray had close links with capital - WalesOnline
Google News - over 5 years
IN my book Memory Lane Cardiff there is a picture of Hollywood film star Ray Milland which was taken on Remembrance Sunday (November 11, 1946) when on a visit to Cardiff he had laid a wreath at the Welsh National War
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The Top 10 Apocalypse Movies - Big Hollywood
Google News - over 5 years
Ray Milland is the father – it's somewhat jarring to see a guy as the hero who looks like a regular adult instead of the kind of manscaped, metrosexual TV man-children we usually see on-screen today. This one actually should be remade (watch it and
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Boxing's Best, Worst and Most Ugly So Far in 2011 - Bleacher Report
Google News - over 5 years
Moments like these transcended the simple confines of the ring and touched something so deep and profound in us we could never properly explain it: one word would be too many and a thousand not enough (a paraphrase of Ray Milland's hopeless alcoholic
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Movies that scare director Guillermo del Toro - USA Today
Google News - over 5 years
Plot: A brother (Ray Milland, second from left) and sister (Ruth Hussey, right) realize why they got such a bargain on a beautiful seaside mansion in England after they begin to experience strange sights and sounds inside their new home
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Height of Hitchcock - Calcutta Telegraph
Google News - over 5 years
The stars: Ray Milland, Grace Kelly, Robert Cummings. The genius: The famous murder attempt scene is built up brilliantly as Tony's watch is stuck at 11 and he realises that he needs to call home immediately as a cue to the killer
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Wilmington on DVDs. Pick of the Week: Classics. Leaving Las Vegas, And Now Miguel - Movie City News
Google News - over 5 years
... as Albert Finney in Under the Volcano, almost as shatteringly funny, euphoric and sadistic as Jason Robards in Long Day's Journey into Night, and a bit better than that other Hollywood drunk Oscar-winner, urbane Ray Milland in The Lost Weekend
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Eco-horror cheesefest Frogs has the most misleading title ever - io9
Google News - over 5 years
Primary antagonist Jason Crockett, played by the iconic Ray Milland, declares, "I still believe man is the master of the world." In other words: poison everything. To which Smith knowingly replies, "What if nature were trying to get back at us?
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A murderous publisher's corporate noir - Columbia Journalism Review
Google News - over 5 years
Stroud, played by Ray Milland, who two years before won an Oscar for his role in The Lost Weekend, is forced out of his editor's suite into the streets. He legs around town, chatting up a doorman and offering cash to cabbies and a slightly batty oil
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Free film screenings in the Hartford area, July 21-27, 2011 - Hartford Courant
Google News - over 5 years
The Big Clock — Ray Milland stars in this 1948 noir. Thursday, 2 pm, Farmington Library, 6 Monteith Drive. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid — Paul Newman and Robert Redford star in this 1969 old West movie. Tuesday, 6 pm, Rockville Public Library,
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Movies on TV, Today & Tonight - Regina Leader-Post
Google News - over 5 years
(165) 3 Dial M for Murder Ray Milland. A money-hungry man's plot to kill his wife goes awry. (1 hr.50 mins.) (102) 3 The Tillman Story Narrated by Josh Brolin. The government turns a soldier's death into propaganda. (1 hr.40 mins
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Dorset dials up an excellent 'Murder' - Bennington Banner
Google News - over 5 years
Often, the play is recognized for Alfred Hitchcock's classic 1954 silver screen adaptation starring Ray Milland, Grace Kelly, and Robert Cumming. The setting is 1952 London in the Maida Vale flat of Margot (Janie Brookshire) and retired tennis star
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Trash Palace presents SURVIVAL RUN - total trash! - blogTO (blog)
Google News - over 5 years
First up, it's Ray Milland, master Hollywood thespian whose career slowly descended into a wonderful portfolio of strange and bizarre oddities like Frogs and The Thing with Two Heads (both screened here at the Trash Palace!)
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Talkback: Is Grace Kelly a Justified Screen Legend? - Movieline
Google News - over 5 years
In Dial M, Kelly thwarted her own murder and fought for justice against the haunting Ray Milland. In To Catch a Thief, she traded barbs with Cary Grant and proved privy to his cat burglar past. And in Rear Window, she forced herself in front of the
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Mark Hinson: What would have happened if the Lizard King had lived? - Tallahassee Democrat (blog)
Google News - over 5 years
1993: During The Doors' induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Morrison repeatedly refers to keyboardist Ray Manzarek as Ray Milland. When all the original Doors reunite to perform "Light My Fire," Morrison shocks fans by inviting Jose
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Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Ray Milland
    LATE_ADULTHOOD
  • 1986
    Age 79
    Milland died of lung cancer in Torrance, California, on 10 March 1986, aged 79.
    More Details Hide Details He was survived by his wife, the former Muriel Weber, and his daughter.
  • 1971
    Age 64
    He appeared in two episodes of Columbo (once as the murderer), in 1971 and 1972, and guest starred as Sire Uri in the pilot episode of the original Battlestar Galactica television series.
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  • 1968
    Age 61
    The play ran from February until July of that year, and in 1968 he reprised his role of Simon Crawford, Q.C. in a film of the same title, which he also directed.
    More Details Hide Details He made few films in the early 1960s but of those he appeared in, three have become cult classics. He appeared in two Roger Corman pictures; the first was The Premature Burial (1962) - the third of Corman's 'Poe Cycle'. He followed this as Dr. Xavier in X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes (1963). The third of these cult favourites was his self-directed, apocalyptic sci-fi drama Panic in Year Zero! He returned as a film character actor in the late 60s and the 70s, notably in the cult classic Daughter of the Mind (1969), in which he was reunited with Gene Tierney, and in the role of Oliver Barrett III, in both Love Story (1970) and its sequel Oliver's Story (1978). In the late 1960s, Milland hosted rebroadcasts of certain episodes of the syndicated Western anthology series, Death Valley Days under the title Trails West; the series' original host had been Ronald Reagan. He also turned in an appearance as a hand surgeon in the Night Gallery episode "The Hand of Borgus Weems." Toward the end of his life, Milland appeared twice as Jennifer Hart's father in ABC's Hart to Hart, with Robert Wagner and Stefanie Powers.
  • FIFTIES
  • 1966
    Age 59
    In 1966 Milland took the lead in the Broadway play Hostile Witness directed by Reginald Denham.
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  • FORTIES
  • 1955
    Age 48
    After leaving Paramount Milland concentrated on directing. His first, a 1955 Western entitled A Man Alone centered around the aftermath of a stagecoach robbery.
    More Details Hide Details This was followed by Lisbon; a crime drama starring Maureen O'Hara and Claude Rains. Both films were distributed by Republic Pictures. Due to his experience as a film director, he achieved much success directing for television. He also made many television appearances. He starred from 1953–1955 with Phyllis Avery and Lloyd Corrigan in the CBS sitcom Meet Mr. McNutley in the role of a college English and later drama professor at fictitious Lynnhaven College. The program was renamed in its second season as The Ray Milland Show. I know actors from my generation who sit at home and cry 'Why don't they send me any scripts?' I tell them, 'Because you still think of yourself as a leading man. You're 68, not 28.
  • 1954
    Age 47
    In 1954, he starred opposite Grace Kelly and Robert Cummings in Alfred Hitchcock's only 3D movie, Dial M for Murder.
    More Details Hide Details Although never admitted by either, rumours were rife at the time that Kelly and Milland were engaged in an affair, fuelled by notorious gossip columnist Hedda Hopper.
  • 1951
    Age 44
    In 1951, he gave a strong performance in Close to My Heart, starring with Gene Tierney as a couple trying to adopt a child.
    More Details Hide Details Also that year he was directed by Jacques Tourneur in Circle of Danger, set in the United Kingdom; it was the only time he filmed in his home country of Wales. The next year he appeared in The Thief in a role with no dialogue, for which he was nominated for a Golden Globe.
  • THIRTIES
  • 1945
    Age 38
    The pinnacle of Milland's career and acknowledgment of his serious dramatic abilities came in 1945 when he starred in The Lost Weekend.
    More Details Hide Details Milland recalled how after returning from an emcee engagement in Peru, he found a book delivered to his home, with a note from Paramount's head of production Buddy DeSylva, which read "Read it. Study it. You're going to play it." Milland found the book unsettling and felt that its subject matter, that of an alcoholic writer, challenging and alien to him. He was also concerned that it would require 'serious acting' something that he believed he had not undertaken to that point in his career. The film was to be produced by Charles Brackett and directed by Billy Wilder, the two men also collaborating to write the screenplay. Milland had already worked with both men, having starred in the 1942 comedy The Major and the Minor, and he was excited by their involvement. Milland's first concern with taking on the role of Don Birnam in The Lost Weekend was that he might overact and look amateurish. After a shambolic attempt to act parts of the script while actually drunk Milland quickly realized that he needed to understand alcoholism. After the cast and crew had arrived on location in New York, Milland was allowed to spend a night in a psychiatric ward of Bellevue Hospital where the patients were suffering from alcoholism and delirium tremens. He found the experience extremely disturbing and left at three in the morning. Milland lost eight pounds for the role and spoke with the book's author Charles R. Jackson to gain insight into the illness.
  • 1944
    Age 37
    In 1944 he appeared in the supernatural film The Uninvited and the Fritz Lang film noir production Ministry of Fear.
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  • 1943
    Age 36
    1943 saw Milland appear in the all-star musical Star Spangled Rhythm, in which he appeared as himself singing "If Men Played Cards as Women Do" alongside Fred MacMurray, Franchot Tone and Lynne Overman.
    More Details Hide Details He also made an appearance in the collaborative drama Forever and a Day.
  • 1941
    Age 34
    As the Second World War continued, Milland found himself now appearing in more action orientated pictures. He starred as a wannabe pilot in 1941's I Wanted Wings with Brian Donlevy and William Holden.
    More Details Hide Details This was followed by Cecil B. DeMille's Reap the Wild Wind (1942) alongside John Wayne. During the filming Milland's character was to have curly hair. Milland's hair was naturally straight, so the studio used hot curling irons on his hair to achieve the effect. Milland felt that it was this procedure that caused him to go prematurely bald, forcing him to go from leading man to supporting player earlier than he would have wished.
  • 1940
    Age 33
    In 1940 Milland appeared in a selection of romantic comedies and dramas alongside some of the leading ladies of the time, including Irene opposite Anna Neagle, Arise, My Love with Claudette Colbert and Untamed with Patricia Morison.
    More Details Hide Details When the United States entered the Second World War, Milland tried to enlist in the U.S. Army Air Forces, but was rejected because of his impaired left hand. He worked as a civilian flight instructor for the Army, and toured with a United Service Organisation (USO) South Pacific troupe in 1944.
  • 1939
    Age 32
    According to Milland, 1939 also resulted in a second injury to his left hand.
    More Details Hide Details As well as horse riding Milland enjoyed piloting aircraft and in his early career would loan out single-seater planes. As a contracted starring actor Paramount had insisted he give up this hobby. Instead Milland took up woodworking and outfitted a machine shop at the back of his newly built house. While operating a circular blade, he slipped catching one of his hands on the saw. The injury resulted in Milland losing a part of his thumb and severely damaging his tendons. Milland believed that the injury left him with only 50 percent usage of his hand, but within weeks of the incident he flew to England to star in French Without Tears. By the time he returned to America, War was declared in Europe. The year finished with the news that Muriel was pregnant with their son Daniel.
    Milland completed 1939 with an appearance as John Geste in Beau Geste alongside Gary Cooper and Robert Preston and Everything Happens at Night (1939) with Sonja Henie for 20th Century Fox.
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  • TWENTIES
  • 1936
    Age 29
    By the end of 1936, Milland was being considered for leading roles, and Paramount rewrote his contract, resulting in the tripling of his salary.
    More Details Hide Details The highly successful The Jungle Princess launched Lamour's career and was followed by two further films in the same genre, Her Jungle Love and Tropic Holiday (both 1938), which also feature Milland. After returning from a break in Europe, Milland was cast as Captain Hugh "Bulldog" Drummond in Bulldog Drummond Escapes (1937). This was followed by another lead role in Gilded Lily, directed by Wesley Ruggles who had started Milland out in Bolero. A heavy work load followed with Milland completing Ebb Tide (1937) for Paramount and a couple of loan-outs to Universal and Columbia Pictures. These were followed by Hotel Imperial (1939) in which Milland suffered a near-fatal accident on the set. One scene called for him to lead a cavalry charge through a small village. An accomplished horseman, Milland insisted upon doing this scene himself. As he was making a scripted jump on the horse, his saddle came loose, sending him flying straight into a pile of broken masonry. Milland awoke in hospital where he remained for a week with a badly damaged left hand, a three-inch gash to his head and concussion.
  • 1933
    Age 26
    Then, in 1933, Roosevelt's reforms to the American banking sector led to a temporary weakness in the dollar allowing Milland to afford a return to the United States.
    More Details Hide Details He returned to California, and found a small flat on Sunset Boulevard, promising Muriel that he would buy a home once he was financially stable. With little prospect of finding acting work, Milland took on menial jobs including working in a bookie's. He decided to find regular employment and through connections made in his time in England, he was offered the role of an assistant manager of a Shell petrol station on Sunset and Clark. On his return from his successful Shell interview he passed by the gates of Paramount Pictures, where he was approached by casting director Joe Egli. Paramount were filming a George Raft picture Bolero (released in February 1934), but an injury to an English actor had left the studio looking for an urgent replacement. Egli offered Milland a two-week contract, at ten times the salary the assistant job would pay. Milland took the acting role. After completing Bolero, Milland was offered a five-week guarantee by Benjamin Glazer to work on an upcoming screwball comedy starring Bing Crosby and Carole Lombard entitled We're Not Dressing (also 1934). During filming he appeared in a scene with George Burns and Gracie Allen, which Milland recalls as falling into an "ad-libbed shambles", which he felt was better than the original script. The film's director Norman Taurog was so impressed that he rang the chief production executive and suggested that Milland be placed on a long term contact.
  • 1932
    Age 25
    Milland was married to Muriel Frances Weber, from 1932 until his death in 1986.
    More Details Hide Details They had a son, Daniel (b.1940) and an adopted daughter, Victoria. Milland had an affair with co-star Grace Kelly, whilst filming Dial M for Murder. Milland had a tattoo on his upper right arm of a skull with a snake curled up on top of it with the tail of the snake sticking out through one of the eyes. The tattoo can be seen for a brief moment in the movie Her Jungle Love (1938). Milland's son, Daniel Milland, appeared in several minor acting roles in the 1960s. He died in March 1981, at the age of 41, in an apparent suicide. An AR-7 .22 calibre Survival Rifle was found next to him on his bed and he had a wound to his head.
    Within eight months of first meeting, the two were married on 30 September 1932 at the Riverside Mission Inn.
    More Details Hide Details The couple had a son, Daniel, and a daughter, Victoria (adopted). Shortly after Payment Deferred, Milland found himself out of work when MGM dropped their option to renew his contract. He spent five months in the US attempting to find further acting work, but after little success, and a strained relationship with his father-in-law, he decided to head back to England hoping that two years spent in Hollywood would lead to roles in British films. Milland cashed in his contracted first-class return ticket to Britain and found an alternative cheaper way back home. Muriel remained in the States to finish her studies, and Milland found temporary accommodation in Earl's Court in London. Milland found life in Britain difficult with little regular work, though he finally found parts in two British films, This is the Life and Orders is Orders (both 1933). Neither were breakthrough roles.
  • 1930
    Age 23
    Despite this setback, the studio executives talked Milland into staying in Hollywood and in 1930 he appeared in his first US film Passion Flower.
    More Details Hide Details Over the next two years, Milland appeared in minor parts for MGM, as well as a few films loaned out to Warner Brothers, often uncredited. His largest role during this period was as Charles Laughton's nephew in Payment Deferred (1932). While in this first period working in the United States, Milland met Muriel Frances Weber, who he always called "Mal", a student at University of Southern California.
    In between stage work, Milland was approached by MGM vice-president Robert Rubin, who had seen the film The Flying Scotsman. MGM offered Milland a nine-month contract, based in Hollywood, and he accepted, leaving the United Kingdom in August 1930.
    More Details Hide Details MGM started Milland out as a 'stock' player, selecting him for small speaking parts in mainstream productions. Milland's first introduction to a Hollywood film resulted in a humiliating scene on the set of Son of India (1931), when the film's director Jacques Feyder berated Milland's acting in front of the entire crew.
  • 1928
    Age 21
    Brody queried Milland's commitment to an army career, which led to Milland buying himself out of the forces in 1928 in the hope of becoming an actor.
    More Details Hide Details His first appearance on film was as an uncredited extra on the E.A. Dupont film Piccadilly (1929). After some unproductive extra work, which never reached the screen, he took on the agent Frank Zeitlin on the recommendation of fellow fledgling actor Jack Raine. It was his reputed prowess as a marksman that earned him work as an extra at the British International Pictures studio on Arthur Robison's production of The Informer (1929), the first screen version of the Liam O'Flaherty novel. While he was working on The Informer he was asked to test for a production being shot on a neighbouring stage. Milland made a good impression on director Castleton Knight and was hired for his first acting role as Jim Edwards, in The Flying Scotsman (also 1929). Milland, in his autobiography, recalls that it was on this film that it was suggested he adopt a stage name; and chose Milland from the Mill lands area of his Welsh home town of Neath.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1907
    Age 0
    Milland was born Alfred Reginald Jones (not Reginald Alfred John Truscott-Jones as has often been stated). His birth was registered between January and March of 1907, in Neath, Glamorgan, Wales, though some sources still state 1905 as his birth year.
    More Details Hide Details He was the son of Elizabeth Annie (née Truscott) and Alfred Jones. In the 1911 census, the family was living at 66 Coronation Road, Mount Pleasant, Neath, Wales. Of his parents, Milland wrote in his autobiography Wide-Eyed in Babylon (1974): "My father was not a cruel or harsh man. Just a very quiet one. I think he was an incurable romantic and consequently a little afraid of his emotions and perhaps ashamed of them... he had been a young hussar in the Boer War and had been present at the relief of Mafeking. He never held long conversations with anyone, except perhaps with me, possibly because I was the only other male in our family. The household consisted of my mother, a rather flighty and coquettish woman much concerned with propriety and what the neighbours thought." He was educated independently before attending the private King's College School, now Kings Monkton School, in Cardiff. He worked at his uncle's horse-breeding farm before leaving home at the age of 21.
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