Stephen Boyd
Actor
Stephen Boyd
Stephen Boyd was a British actor from Glengormley, County Antrim, Northern Ireland. He appeared in some 60 films, most notably as "Messala" in Ben-Hur.
Biography
Stephen Boyd's personal information overview.
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Popular photos of Stephen Boyd
News
News abour Stephen Boyd from around the web
Timeless Reels: Classic Films on DVD | Collection Development, September 1, 2011 - Library Journal
Google News - over 5 years
With the famous chariot race between Heston and Stephen Boyd. The Bridge on the River Kwai. color. 161 min. Dir: David Lean. Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, www.sonypictures.com/homevideo. 1957. DVD ISBN 9780767853545. $19.94 ($13.18)
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No. 8: Pequannock sets sights on another playoff berth - NorthJersey.com
Google News - over 5 years
To replace the playmaking pair of Stephen Boyd and Ben Kohle, Kopp said that he is expecting senior receivers Brandon Peters and RJ DeGeorge to answer the bell. Peters will replace Boyd in his slot and DeGeorge will fill in nicely at cornerback after
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The best of both worlds - Boston Globe
Google News - over 5 years
After all, Luke's tackle total for his first two years at BC (341 total) is nearly unbelievable, putting him on pace to best the school's all-time record of 524, set by Stephen Boyd. Unbelievable is, really, a good word for Kuechly
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Chaminade Football Opens 2011 Training Camp - Patch.com
Google News - over 5 years
Head coach Stephen Boyd be in his third year as head coach of a squad which will be the beneficiaries of a junior varsity feeder team that went 6-1 but fell in the playoffs. The Flyers were ranked No. 10 in the CHSFL in both offense and defense at the
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Boston College Football Training Camp: Eagles Wrap Up Strong First Week - SB Nation Boston (blog)
Google News - over 5 years
(via BC Media Relations) The school also announced on Tuesday that former Eagle Stephen Boyd, Class of 1994, had been named one of 12 ACC Legends in the Class of 2011. Boyd, a native of Valley Stream, New York, played a role in leading the Eagles to
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Boston College Football Fall Practice: Tuesday Notes - BC Interruption
Google News - over 5 years
BC Class of 1994 alum and two time NFL Pro Bowler Stephen Boyd will be the Eagles representative in the ACC Legends Class of 2011. He will be joining such legendary players as Chris Slade (UVA), Andre Wadworth (FSU), and Jim Otto (Miami)
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Bennett Named to 2011 ACC Legends Class - GoDuke.com
Google News - over 5 years
Bennett is joined in the 2011 ACC Football Legends class by Stephen Boyd (Boston College), Perry Tuttle (Clemson), Andre Wadsworth (Florida State), Lucius Sanford (Georgia Tech), Dick Novak (Maryland), Jim Otto (Miami), Chris Hanburger (North Carolina) ... - -
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Singh outshines Ireland's golfers - Insideireland.ie
Google News - over 5 years
Jeev Milkha Singh outshone Ireland's four major stars with a dazzling eight-under-par 63 when the Irish Open began yesterday at Killarney. He has followed that up with a round of 70 today taking him to nine-under-par
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Ireland in Pot Three for World Cup draw - Insideireland.ie
Google News - over 5 years
The Republic of Ireland will be placed in Pot Three for Saturday's World Cup qualifying draw in Brazil. England are among the top seeds in the draw and therefore will be placed in Pot One whilst France, currently ranked 15th in the
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NI to face Denmark in Milk Cup Elite final - Insideireland.ie
Google News - over 5 years
Northern Ireland will face Denmark in the final of the Elite Section following an impressive 3-1 victory over Georgia at the Ballymena Showgrounds. Goals from Seanan Clucas, Matthew Ball and Neil Dougan were enough to send Steve
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McCarthy insists Doyle is going nowhere - Insideireland.ie
Google News - over 5 years
Mick McCarthy believes that speculation linking Kevin Doyle with a move away from Wolves will not faze the Republic of Ireland front-man. Several Premier League clubs are reportedly interested in the striker but McCarthy backs him to
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Ashington open up gap - The Northern Echo
Google News - over 5 years
City had few answers to the excellent bowling attack of Stephen Boyd, Surya Rathore and Callum Storey who each grabbed three wickets as City collapsed to 97 all out. Boyd took three at a cost of 30 runs in a 15-over spell which included six maidens,
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Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Stephen Boyd
    FORTIES
  • 1977
    Age 45
    His most critically acclaimed role during the 1970s was as a colourful Irish gangster in the UK crime thriller The Squeeze in 1977.
    More Details Hide Details A letter from film producer Euan Lloyd (who produced such films as Shalako, The Man Called Noon and The Wild Geese), states that "Stephen Boyd was one of the nicest, kindest people I have met in my lifetime, rare in this profession." Boyd lived most of his life in California, where he enjoyed his favourite pastime, golf. At one point in the 1960s, he had three homes there — one above the Sunset Strip, one in Tarzana and another in Palm Springs — though he would make frequent trips back to his hometown of Belfast to visit his family. On one particular visit to Belfast in 1971, Boyd exclaimed his dismay about the situation in Northern Ireland at that time: "Because of the divisiveness, the potential for displaying to the world all that is good in that lovely land is lost, perhaps even destroyed." Boyd was valued so highly by his native city of Belfast that during his visits he was always given a military escort from the airport to his home for security reasons.
  • 1972
    Age 40
    A short time later, Boyd became physically ill over the affair, and abruptly left Rome to return first to Belfast, then onto Jamaica to begin filming The Treasure of Jamaica Reef in early 1972.
    More Details Hide Details Boyd's last marriage took place in 1974 to Elizabeth Mills), a secretary at the British Arts Council, whom he had known since 1955. Elizabeth Mills followed Boyd to the United States in the late 1950s and was his personal assistant and secretary for many years before marrying him in the mid- 1970s.
    He also kept travelling to exotics destinations to act, including Australia for The Hands of Cormac Joyce in 1972, South Africa for Control Factor and The Manipulator in 1972-1973, Jamaica for the scuba diving adventure The Treasure of Jamaica Reef in 1972, Florida for the television pilot Key West in 1973 and Hawaii in his last acting stint as a guest star on the popular television show Hawaii Five-O in 1977.
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  • THIRTIES
  • 1971
    Age 39
    He also made several Westerns, including Hannie Caulder with Raquel Welch in 1971, The Man Called Noon in 1973, Those Dirty Dogs in 1973 and Potato Fritz in 1976.
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    He worked with cult director Romain Gary in the drug thriller Kill! in 1971.
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  • 1970
    Age 38
    He made several films in Spain with director José Antonio Nieves Conde, including Marta in 1970, The Great Swindle in 1971, and Casa Manchada in 1975.
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    Boyd would actually go on to star and narrate a Scientology recruiting film called Freedom in 1970.
    More Details Hide Details A copy of this film can be found at the Library of Congress, but it is not available online via any Scientology resource, which may indicate a falling out Boyd had with Scientology using his name for recruiting purposes. There is no documentation of his later involvement with it. During the 1970s demand for Boyd in Hollywood had diminished, so he focused his attention on European films and several television pilots and shows.
  • 1969
    Age 37
    In an interview in August 1969 with the Detroit Free Press, he said that Scientology helped him through the filming of Slaves, and that it is "a process used to make you capable of learning.
    More Details Hide Details Scientology is nothing. It means only what you want it to. It is not a church you go to to pray, but a church that you go to to learn. It is no good unless you apply it. It is the application". Boyd apparently had been elevated to a Scientology Status of OC 6, a position beneath that of Clear.
    The film was released during the volatile civil rights era and in May 1969 Boyd attended the premiere alongside Dionne Warwick in Baltimore, Maryland Closely following Slaves, Boyd starred in another story about racial tension, this time a World War II made-for-television drama called Carter's Army (or Black Brigade) which aired in August 1970, featuring a young Richard Pryor.
    More Details Hide Details During this time, or earlier, is when Boyd began his interest in L. Ron Hubbard's Church of Scientology, which would make him one of the first Hollywood stars to be involved in it. Boyd had always expressed an interest in esoteric religions.
  • 1967
    Age 35
    In 1967 Boyd was excited to get back to the stage to star in a play called The Bashful Genius, about Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw.
    More Details Hide Details The play had a very brief run during the summer of 1967. Boyd was cast opposite Sean Connery in the western adventure Shalako, which was based on the Louis L'Amour novel. It also cast him opposite Brigitte Bardot again, 10 years after the first film they made together. Shalako was filmed in the early part of 1968 in Almería, Spain. Returning to the United States, Boyd was cast as the cruel slave master Nathan MacKay in the Southern "Slavesploitation" drama Slaves, also starring Ossie Davis and songstress Dionne Warwick. The film was loosely based on the famous Harriet Beecher Stowe novel Uncle Tom's Cabin. It was filmed during the summer of 1968 at the supposedly haunted Buena Vista plantation near Shreveport, Louisiana.
  • 1966
    Age 34
    Next, Boyd starred in a James Bond-like spy thriller Assignment K with Swedish model/actress Camilla Sparv, which was filmed in Germany and London during the winter of 1966.
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  • 1965
    Age 33
    In the summer of 1965, Boyd joined German star Elke Sommer and music legend Tony Bennett to film the Hollywood drama The Oscar, based on the eponymous Richard Sale novel.
    More Details Hide Details The movie was a popular success, but maligned by film critics. The producer of the film, Joseph Levine, however, was so pleased with Boyd's performance that he hired him for his next project as well, The Caper of the Golden Bulls. This film was made in Spain in the summer of 1966, and the actors took part in the famous Feria del Toro de San Fermin festival in Pamplona (known as the Running of the Bulls).
  • 1964
    Age 32
    Throughout 1964 Boyd continued to make films in Europe, travelling to Yugoslavia to star as the villain Jamuga in the epic Genghis Khan.
    More Details Hide Details Boyd was the top billed and therefore the top paid star in the epic, and this apparently caused friction with up-and-coming star Omar Sharif. After completing Genghis Khan, Boyd trekked to Cairo, Egypt for a short stint in yet another epic, The Bible. After all this globe-trotting, the world weary Boyd was very happy to return to the United States to start work on the Twentieth Century Fox science fiction adventure Fantastic Voyage, co-starring with soon-to-be icon Raquel Welch. This was filmed in the early part of 1965.
  • 1962
    Age 30
    Boyd flew back to Rome in the summer of 1962 to act with Italian superstar Gina Lollobrigida in her long-time pet project Imperial Venus, a romantic epic about the many loves of Pauline Bonaparte, the sister of Napoleon.
    More Details Hide Details This film was the first film to be banned by the Motion Picture Association of America for male nudity. Boyd appeared in a humorous bedroom scene, naked, but covered by a sheet. The suggestion of nudity was too much for the censors and the movie was never released in the United States. Immediately upon finishing this film, Boyd arrived in Spain to begin work on The Fall of the Roman Empire. This was filmed during the early part of 1963 during a severe winter in Europe. Boyd's co-star was another Italian legend, Sophia Loren. Boyd also had the opportunity to ride another chariot in this film. Boyd flew back to Hollywood in the summer to star in a General Electric Theater TV Program with Louis Jourdan called War of Nerves. He then returned to Europe to film the suspenseful The Third Secret (film) starring Pamela Franklin and Sean Connery's wife, Diane Cilento.
    Next, Boyd was again loaned out to MGM Studios to star with Doris Day in the circus-musical Billy Rose's Jumbo, filmed during the early part of 1962; the role earned Boyd a nomination for the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy.
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    In January 1962 Boyd starred in a television film from General Electric Theater called The Wall Between.
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  • TWENTIES
  • 1960
    Age 28
    He began film work in September 1960 but eventually withdrew from the problem-plagued production after Elizabeth Taylor's severe illness postponed the film for months. (Cleopatra was later directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, and the role of Mark Antony went to Richard Burton.)
    More Details Hide Details After several months without active work, Boyd was thrilled to finally get his first post-Cleopatra role. The film was The Inspector, renamed Lisa for the American release. It was based on the novel by Jan de Hartog and co- starred actress Dolores Hart. The film was made in Amsterdam, London and Wales during the summer of 1961.
    Boyd spoke about this incident during his appearance on the popular TV programme What's My Line?, which aired on 11 December 1960.
    More Details Hide Details Boyd was originally chosen to play Mark Antony opposite Elizabeth Taylor in 20th Century Fox's epic production of Cleopatra (1963) under the direction of Rouben Mamoulian.
    He also appeared as a singing guest on Dinah Shore's St. Patrick's Day special in March 1960, where he performed two popular Irish songs with Dinah Shore, "I Know My Love" and "Molly Malone".
    More Details Hide Details Boyd himself chose to do roles which he felt comfortable in. His next choice was The Big Gamble, which featured Darryl F. Zanuck's current paramour and French icon Juliette Gréco. It was filmed on the Ivory Coast of West Africa, Dublin and the Southern Part of France in the spring and summer of 1961. The adventure of making this film almost outdid the adventure in the film itself as the crew slept in tents in the jungle that were guarded by natives on parole for cannibalism. Boyd nearly drowned in the Ardèche river during the making of the film. Luckily he was saved by his co-star and excellent swimmer David Wayne.
    In February 1960 he starred in the Playhouse 90 television performance called The Sound of Trumpets with Dolores Hart, which garnered good reviews.
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    In early 1960 Boyd won the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture for his performance in Ben-Hur.
    More Details Hide Details He made a guest appearance alongside the silent-era Ben-Hur stars Francis X. Bushman and Ramon Novarro on Hedda Hopper's special television programme Hedda Hopper's Hollywood.
    He was featured in the popular TV program This Is Your Life on 3 February 1960, a show which featured many of Boyd's family members and acquaintances (including Michael Redgrave) telling stories about his early life and film career.
    More Details Hide Details This should be some indication of how "Stephen Boyd fever" was catching. Newspaper columnists were getting swarmed with letters from female fans of all ages wanting to know more about Boyd. He was being sent dozens of starring roles, which most he had to turn down due to other obligations, or he himself turned down. He opted out of the biblical epic The Story of Ruth, which didn't please Fox studios, and he was one of the front-runners to star with Marilyn Monroe in her picture Let's Make Love.
    Modern Screen magazine in 1960 stated that Boyd's ruthless Messala had "lost the chariot race but captured the sympathy and sex appeal of Ben-Hur."
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  • 1959
    Age 27
    They officially divorced in early 1959.
    More Details Hide Details Boyd lived as a bachelor for most of his life. He was very popular with the Hollywood columnists, including his friend Hedda Hopper and her rival Louella Parsons due to his honest, open comments and sense of humour. He dated some very prominent women in Hollywood, including Anna Kashfi (Marlon Brando's ex), Belfast socialite Romney Tree, actress Joan Collins, TV star and Playboy centerfold Marilyn Hanold and Israeli actress Elena Eden. Hollywood columnists would also make note of Boyd's flirtation with Hope Lange. Hope Lange would later say in a Vanity Fair interview about The Best of Everything: "During the film we had a great camaraderie. He had that wonderful Irish charm, and wonderful humor. And anyone who has humor I'm a sucker for." Boyd was rumored to have been a romantic interest of Doris Day during the filming of Jumbo, which Boyd vehemently denied. Boyd seems to have been much enamored of his co-star Sophia Loren during the filming of the epic The Fall of the Roman Empire. Boyd said during an interview in 1963 that "I wouldn't die exactly for Sophia, but I'd come close to it." He would also comment in an interview in 1976 that Sophia was "the most beautiful person I've ever met". Raquel Welch would claim in 2013 that during the filming of Fantastic Voyage in 1965, she became infatuated with Boyd, who rejected her advances.
    Ben-Hur was released in December 1959 and made Boyd an international star overnight.
    More Details Hide Details His portrayal of the Roman tribune Messala brought in rave reviews. Press columnist Erskine Johnson wrote, "A brass hat and the armor of a Roman warrior in Ben-Hur does for Stephen Boyd what a tight dress does for Marilyn Monroe." Ruth Waterbury, in her Boyd feature in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, would describe Boyd's character as "the dangerously masculine and quite magnificent Messala."
    After Ben-Hur filming was completed, Boyd starred with Academy Award winner Susan Hayward in the California-based drama Woman Obsessed. Some advertisements for this movie labeled Boyd as "The New Gable." He was then part of another excellent ensemble cast in the adaptation of Rona Jaffe's novel The Best of Everything, filmed in early 1959.
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  • 1958
    Age 26
    Boyd was first married in 1958 to Italian-born MCA executive Mariella Di Sarzana during the filming of Ben-Hur.
    More Details Hide Details They separated after just three weeks. Concerning his short-lived marriage to Sarzana, Boyd would explain, "It was my fault. I'm an Irish so-and-so when I'm working. I hadn't been married a week when we both knew we had made a mistake. She is a nice girl but we were just not meant for each other. I suppose I wasn't ready for marriage. Maybe I was still too much of an adolescent."
    But he eventually signed and began filming in the summer of 1958.
    More Details Hide Details Boyd was required to wear brown contact lenses as Messala, which irritated his eyes and caused vision problems for a few months after the movie was completed. Despite this, Boyd described the filming experience of Ben-Hur (which took place in Cinecittà Studios in Rome), as the most exciting experience of his life.
    Boyd's first true Hollywood role came as a renegade cowboy in the Fox western The Bravados, which starred Gregory Peck and Joan Collins. It was during the making of this film in Mexico in the early part of 1958 that Boyd was finally convinced to audition for the coveted role of Messala in MGM's upcoming epic Ben-Hur.
    More Details Hide Details Many other actors had tried for the role, and Boyd initially wasn't interested.
  • 1957
    Age 25
    During late 1957, Bardot, Boyd and renowned actress Alida Valli filmed the lusty romance The Night Heaven Fell, directed by Roger Vadim, in Paris and in the region of Málaga, Spain, specifically the small town of Mijas.
    More Details Hide Details Being in the Bardot spotlight added much to Boyd's film credit, in addition to bringing him notice in Hollywood.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1931
    Born
    Boyd was born William Millar in 1931 (some references say 1928).
    More Details Hide Details One of nine siblings, he attended Ballyclare High School. He starred in a radio play in Belfast as a child and joined the Ulster Group Theatre. With the Ulster Group Boyd learned the behind the scenes tasks of the theatre, and eventually worked his way up to character parts and leads. By the time he was twenty, Boyd had a wide range of theatre experience in Ireland, but he longed for the big stage. Boyd moved to London and worked in a cafeteria and busked outside a cinema in Leicester Square to get money. Boyd caught his first break as a doorman at the Odeon Theatre. The Leicester Square Cinema across the street recruited him to usher attendees during the British Academy Awards in the early 1950s. During the awards ceremony he was noticed by actor Sir Michael Redgrave, who used his connections to introduce Boyd to the director of the Windsor Repertory Group.
Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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