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Donald Pleasence

Donald Pleasence

Birthday: 1919-10-05 · Known For: Acting

156 Movies · 8 TV Series

Biography

Donald Henry Pleasence (; 5 October 1919 – 2 February 1995) was an English actor. He began his career onstage in his native Britain before transitioning into a screen career, where he played numerous supporting and character roles including RAF Flight Lieutenant Colin Blythe in The Great Escape (1963), the villain Ernst Stavro Blofeld in the James Bond film You Only Live Twice (1967), SEN 5241 in THX 1138 (1971), and the deranged Clarence "Doc" Tydon in Wake in Fright (1971). Pleasence gained widespread recognition for his role as psychiatrist Dr Samuel Loomis in Halloween (1978) and four of its sequels, a role for which he was nominated for a Saturn Award for Best Actor. The series' popularity and critical success lead to a resurgent career for Pleasence, who appeared in numerous American and European-produced horror and thriller films. He collaborated with Halloween director, John Carpenter, twice more, as the President of the United States in Escape from New York (1981), and as the Priest in Prince of Darkness (1987).

Personal Life

Pleasence married four times and had five daughters from his first three marriages. He had Angela and Jean with Miriam Raymond (m. 1941–1958); Lucy and Polly with Josephine Martin Crombie (m. 1959–1970); and Miranda with Meira Shore (m. 1970–1988). His last marriage was to Linda Kentwood (m. 1988–1995; his death)

Early Life

Pleasence was born in Worksop, Nottinghamshire, England, the son of Alice (née Armitage) and Thomas Stanley Pleasence, a railway station master. He was brought up as a strict Methodist in the small village of Grimoldby, Lincolnshire. He received his formal education at Crosby Junior School, Scunthorpe and Ecclesfield Grammar School, in Sheffield, South Yorkshire. After working as the clerk-in-charge at Swinton railway station in South Yorkshire, he decided that he wanted to be a professional actor, taking up a placement with the Jersey Repertory Company in 1939.

Movies & TV Series

1989.

8 Movies
Casablanca Express

Casablanca Express

1989
It is 1942 and the conflict between the U.S. and Germany is getting heated, U.S. Intelligence soon discovers that the Natzis are planning to capture Winston Churchill. In order to protect him they se...
The House of Usher

The House of Usher

1989
An updated version of the classic horror tale by Edgar Allen Poe. Ryan and his girlfriend Molly are going to visit Ryan's uncle, Roderick Usher, at his mansion. They find, however, that Roderick's bro...
Ten Little Indians

Ten Little Indians

1989
An unknown judge invites a guilty governess and others to a 1930s safari, for justice one by one.
Paganini Horror

Paganini Horror

1989
A female rock band acquires an infamous composition by Niccolò Paganini that was used in satanic rituals. When the band decides to record the song and film a video in Paganini's old mansion, the spiri...
American Rickshaw

American Rickshaw

1989
After a stripper tricks him into filming a sex tape, Scott Edwards (Olympic Gold Medalist Mitch Gaylord), a Miami rickshaw runner, becomes embroiled in the murder of a televangelist's son when he inad...
River of Death

River of Death

1989
An adventurer (Hamilton) decides to go in search of the lost city in the Amazon jungle. A motley crew of other people with reasons of their own decide to join him for the wealth of the lost city. But ...
Miss Marple: A Caribbean Mystery

Miss Marple: A Caribbean Mystery

1989
While on vacation at a resort hotel in the West Indies, Miss Marple correctly suspects that the apparently natural death of a retired British major is actually the work of a murderer planning yet anot...
Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers

Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers

5.62
1989
Presumed dead after a shoot-out with the Haddonfield police, Michael Myers is secretly nursed back to health -- and returns a year later to kill again and once more targets his young niece, Jamie. Jam...

1988.

7 Movies · 1 TV Series
TV
The Great Escape II: The Untold Story

The Great Escape II: The Untold Story

1988
A former POW leads a special task force to hunt down the culprits responsible for carrying out the orders to murder 50 of the 76 escapees from Stalag Luft III.
Last Platoon

Last Platoon

1988
After ex-cop and highly decorated war hero Chet Costa's Vietnamese girlfriend disappears, he accepts a risky mission: he shall blow up a bridge at the Vietnamese border to close the Vietcong's line of...
Vampire in Venice

Vampire in Venice

1988
Professor Paris Catalano visits Venice, to investigate the last known appearance of the famous vampire Nosferatu during the carnival of 1786.
Hanna's War

Hanna's War

1988
Hanna's War is the true story of Hanna Senesh, a Hungarian-Jewish WW2 resistance fighter, who would become Israel's "Joan of Arc". As a young person, she fled Nazi-occupied Hungary for Palestine, wher...
Phantom of Death

Phantom of Death

1988
Police Comissioner Datti is investigating the murder of a female doctor whose murderer seems to be a thirty-fivish year old man. Soon another murder follows: Pianist Robert Dominici's girlfriend is fo...
The Great Escape II: The Untold Story

The Great Escape II: The Untold Story

1988
Allied prisoners tunnel out of a stalag, then return to avenge fellow escapees executed by the Nazis.
The Commander

The Commander

1988
Lewis Collins is back to leading mercenaries on the move in Southeast Asia. This time the cast is unusually good including Lee Van Cleef, Brett Halsey (Cop Game), Romano Puppo (Robowar), Mike Monty (R...
Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers

Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers

5.72
1988
The apparently comatose Michael Myers is being transferred from one hospital to another, but he wakes up when the ambulance crew talk about his surviving niece, Jamie. After slaughtering his attendant...

1987.

9 Movies
Animali metropolitani

Animali metropolitani

1987
In the year 2030 mankind has regressed to ape form. In order to explain this, a scientist shows a 20th century film about a Roman couple in a society gone mad slightly more than usual to his audience....
Scoop

Scoop

1987
Scoop is a 1987 TV film directed by Gavin Millar, adapted by William Boyd from the 1938 satirical novel Scoop by Evelyn Waugh. It was produced by Sue Birtwistle with executive producers Nick Elliott a...
Ground Zero

Ground Zero

1987
A second generation cameraman in Australia finds evidence that his father had filmed a nuclear test that allowed aboriginies to be exposed to and killed by radiation. He begins a search for a secret t...
Warrior Queen

Warrior Queen

1987
In ancient Pompeii, slaves are bought and sold for household chores and sex. A mysterious queen moves among the elite, meantime secretly helping the slaves to escape. Eventually her life is also in je...
Specters

Specters

1987
A mysterious tomb is unearthed in the catacombs under Rome, the contents of which contain evidence of an ageless evil that may once have preyed on man.
Django Strikes Again

Django Strikes Again

1987
Former gunfighter Django has become a monk and abandoned his violent former ways. His daughter is kidnapped by rogue Hungarian soldiers using slave labor to run a silver mine. Django casts off his hab...
To Kill a Stranger

To Kill a Stranger

1987
Cristina Carver (Angelica Maria) finds herself in dire straits after she arrives to spend some time with her TV-reporter husband (Dean Stockwell) who is visiting a Latin American country run by a mili...
Basements

Basements

1987
Basements is the title for the omnibus film that brings together two plays by Harold Pinter - The Dumb Waiter and The Room - each, once again, set in a single location.
Prince of Darkness

Prince of Darkness

4.33
1987
A research team finds a mysterious cylinder in a deserted church. If opened, it could mean the end of the world.

1979.

7 Movies · 1 TV Series
Better Late Than Never

Better Late Than Never

1979
Harry Landers is a feisty senior citizen who refuses to abide by the rules in a stodgy retirement home run by a dour Ms. Davis, in which Harry leads a revolt by the other goated senior citizen residen...
The Angry Man

The Angry Man

1979
Romain Dupree arrives to Montreal from France only to be informed that his son is dead. However the deceased is not his son but an individual who was using his passport so Dupree begins a frantic sear...
Gold of the Amazon Women

Gold of the Amazon Women

1979
An adventurer searches for the fabled Golden Cities of El Dorado and allies himself with a tribe of Amazon women against a murderous villain who is also after the treasure.
Good Luck, Miss Wyckoff

Good Luck, Miss Wyckoff

1979
An abusive sexual relationship between a white spinster schoolteacher and a young black janitor in 1956 Kansas complicates her struggle to come to grips with her sexuality and emotions.
Jaguar Lives!

Jaguar Lives!

1979
The world's newest kung fu legend, Joe Lewis, takes on evil gangsters and saves the world.
TV
The French Atlantic Affair

The French Atlantic Affair

1979
Father Craig Dunleavy leads a band of terrorists who hijack a cruise ship in the French Atlantic and demand a $70 million ransom. Harold Columbine is our main hero, as the teleplay spends as much time...
All Quiet on the Western Front

All Quiet on the Western Front

1979
At the start of World War I, Paul Baumer is a young German patriot, eager to fight. Indoctrinated with propaganda at school, he and his friends eagerly sign up for the army soon after graduation. But ...
Dracula

Dracula

1.5
1979
Romanticized adaptation of Bram Stoker's 1897 classic. Count Dracula is a subject of fatal attraction to more than one English maiden lady, as he seeks an immortal bride.

1978.

9 Movies · 1 TV Series
TV
Centennial

Centennial

5.33
1978
The economic and cultural growth of town of Centennial, Colorado, through the intertwining lives of the brave men and women inhabiting it. Spanning two centuries from the settling of the area in the 1...
The Bastard

The Bastard

1978
Phillipe Charboneau is the illegitimate son of an English duke. When he travels from France to England to claim his inheritance, he incurs the wrath of his father's family and is forced to flee to Ame...
The Defection of Simas Kudirka

The Defection of Simas Kudirka

1978
Based on the true story of the attempted defection in 1970 by a Lithuanian seaman seeking political asylum in the United States. Kudirka was denied asylum and returned to the Soviets, charged with tre...
Night Creature

Night Creature

1978
A big-game hunter brings a killer leopard to his private island and turns it loose so he can hunt it down. However, unexpected visitors arrive at the island and interrupt his hunt. Meanwhile, the leop...
Tomorrow Never Comes

Tomorrow Never Comes

1978
Coming back from an extended business trip, Frank discovers that his girlfriend Janie is now working at a new resort hotel where the owner has given her a permanent place to stay, as well as other gif...
Last In, First Out

Last In, First Out

1978
A woman on a train becomes the center of attention when she is mistaken for a spy by opposing factions who are traveling on the same line.
Power Play

Power Play

1978
A thriller, released 1st November 1978, based on the non-fiction book Coup d'État: A Practical Handbook by Edward N. Luttwak.
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

1
1978
A small town band makes it big, but loses track of their roots, as they get caught up into the big-time machinations of the music biz. Now, they must thwart a plot to destroy their home town. Built ar...
Blood Relatives

Blood Relatives

1978
A Montreal police inspector (Donald Sutherland) cracks a murder case with clues from the victim's diary.
Halloween

Halloween

5.81
1978
On a black and unholy Halloween night years ago, little Michael Myers brutally slaughtered his sister in cold bold. But for the last fifteen years, town residents have rested easy, knowing that he was...

1960.

10 Movies
Circus of Horrors

Circus of Horrors

1960
A plastic surgeon and his nurse join a bizarre circus to escape from the police. Here he befriends deformed women and transforms them for his "Temple of Beauty". However, when they threaten to leave, ...
Alice Through the Looking Box

Alice Through the Looking Box

1960
A Christmas TV special in which Alice does not go through a looking glass, but through a TV set.
A Story of David

A Story of David

1960
Directed by Bob McNaught. King Saul of Israel is jealous of the fame and adoration of David, who long ago slew Goliath and brought victory to Saul's armies. Now Saul, egged on by his Edomite counselor...
The Shakedown

The Shakedown

1960
Augie comes out of prison and finds his old vice racket has been taken over by the sinister Harry H Corbett (Gollar). So he dreams up a new scam
Hell Is a City

Hell Is a City

1960
Set in Manchester, heartland of England's industrial north, Don Starling escapes from jail becoming England's most wanted man. Ruthless villain Starling together with his cronies engineered a robbery ...
The Battle of the Sexes

The Battle of the Sexes

1960
Angela Barrows is a man-eating business woman sent by her American employer to investigate their export opportunities in Edinburgh. En route she meets Robert MacPherson, a businessman who asks for her...
The Hands of Orlac

The Hands of Orlac

1960
The oft-filmed Maurice Renard novel Hands of Orlac was given another cinematic go-round in this Franco-British production. Famed concert pianist Stephen Orlac (Mel Ferrer) survives a plane crash, but ...
Sons and Lovers

Sons and Lovers

1960
The son of a working-class British mining family has dreams of pursuing an art career, but when he strikes up an affair with an older woman from the town it enrages his jealous mother. (TCM.com)
Suspect

Suspect

1960
A government team researching cures for plague find their results put on the Official Secrets list. One of their number is so incensed by this that he lets the maimed and jealous companion of a female...
The Flesh and the Fiends

The Flesh and the Fiends

1960
Edinburgh surgeon Dr. Robert Knox requires cadavers for his research into the functioning of the human body; local ne'er-do-wells Burke and Hare find ways to provide him with fresh specimens...
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