Richard Harris


01 Oct 1930


Limerick, Ireland


Richard St. John Harris


A genuine star of cinema on screen and a fiery hell raiser off screen, Richard St John Harris was born on October 1, 1930 in Limerick, Ireland, to a farming family. He was the son of Mildred Josephine (Harty) and Ivan John Harris, and was an excellent rugby player, with a strong passion for literature. Unfortunately, a bout of tuberculosis as a teenager ended his aspirations to a rugby career, but he became fascinated with the theater and skipped a local dance one night to attend a performance of "Henry IV". He was hooked and went on to learn his craft at The London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, then spent several years in stage productions. He debuted on screen in Shake Hands with the Devil (1959) and quickly scored regular work in films, including The Wreck of the Mary Deare (1959), The Night Fighters (1960) and a good role as a frustrated Australian bomber pilot in The Guns of Navarone (1961).

However, his breakthrough performance was as the quintessential "angry young man" in the sensational drama This Sporting Life (1963), which scored him an Oscar nomination. He then appeared in the WW II commando tale The Heroes of Telemark (1965) and in the Sam Peckinpah-directed western Major Dundee (1965). He next showed up in Hawaii (1966) and played King Arthur in Camelot (1967), a lackluster adaptation of the famous Broadway play. Better performances followed, among them a role as a reluctant police informer in The Molly Maguires (1970) alongside Sir Sean Connery. Harris took the lead role in the violent western A Man Called Horse (1970), which became something of a cult film and spawned two sequels.

As the 1970s progressed, Harris continued to appear regularly on screen; however, the quality of the scripts varied from above average to woeful. His credits during this period included directing himself as an aging soccer player in the delightful The Hero (1971); the western The Deadly Trackers (1973); the big-budget "disaster" film Juggernaut (1974); the strangely-titled crime film 99 and 44/100% Dead (1974); with Connery again in Robin and Marian (1976); Gulliver's Travels (1977); a part in the Jaws (1975) ripoff Orca (1977) and a nice turn as an ill-fated mercenary with Richard Burton and Roger Moore in the popular action film The Wild Geese (1978).

The 1980s kicked off with Harris appearing in the silly Bo Derek vanity production Tarzan, the Ape Man (1981) and the remainder of the decade had him appearing in some very forgettable productions.

However, the luck of the Irish was once again to shine on Harris' career and he scored rave reviews (and another Oscar nomination) for The Field (1990). He then locked horns with Harrison Ford as an IRA sympathizer in Patriot Games (1992) and got one of his best roles as gunfighter English Bob in the Clint Eastwood western Unforgiven (1992). Harris was firmly back in vogue and rewarded his fans with more wonderful performances in Wrestling Ernest Hemingway (1993); Cry, the Beloved Country (1995); The Great Kandinsky (1995) and This Is the Sea (1997). Further fortune came his way with a strong performance in the blockbuster Gladiator (2000) and he became known to an entirely new generation of film fans as Albus Dumbledore in the mega-successful Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001) and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002). His final screen role was as "Lucius Sulla" in Caesar (2002).

A diverse, vigorous and captivating actor, Richard Harris passed away from Hodgkin's Disease on October 25, 2002.

Actor ( 113 credits )

Never Apologize (2007) Himself (archive footage)
Banda sonora (2007)  King Arthur (1 episode, 2007)
Cinema mil (2005)  King Arthur (1 episode, 2005)
Kaena: The Prophecy (2003) Opaz (voice)
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002) Professor Albus Dumbledore
The Count of Monte Cristo (2002) Abbé Faria
The Pearl (2001) Dr. Karl
My Kingdom (2001) Sandeman
Muhammad Ali: Through the Eyes of the World (2001)
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001) Professor Albus Dumbledore
Friday Night with Jonathan Ross (2001)  Himself (1 episode, 2001)
Gladiator (2000) Marcus Aurelius
Bette (2000)  Stage Hand (1 episode, 2001)
Grizzly Falls (1999) Old Harry
To Walk with Lions (1999) George Adamson
The Barber of Siberia (1998) Makkreken (as Richard Kharris)
Un affare trasversale (1998)
This Is the Sea (1997) Old Man Jacobs
Smilla's Sense of Snow (1997) Dr. Andreas Tork
Trojan Eddie (1996) John Power
The Rosie O'Donnell Show (1996)  Himself (1 episode, 2001)
Airport (1996)  Himself (1 episode, 2002)
Savage Hearts (1995) Sir Roger Foxley
Cry, the Beloved Country (1995) James Jarvis
Wrestling Ernest Hemingway (1993) Frank
Silent Tongue (1993) Prescott Roe
Late Show with David Letterman (1993)  Himself (2 episodes, 1994-1997)
Hollywood U.K. (1993)  Himself - Contributor (1 episode, 1993)
Late Night with Conan O'Brien (1993)  Himself (1 episode, 1997)
Unforgiven (1992) English Bob
Patriot Games (1992) Paddy O'Neil
HBO First Look (1992)  Himself (1 episode, 2000)
One on One with John Tesh (1991)  Himself (1 episode, 1991)
The Field (1990) 'Bull' McCabe
King of the Wind (1990) King George II
Mack the Knife (1989) Mr. Peachum
Strike Commando 2 (1988) Maj. Vic Jenkins
The Last Resort with Jonathan Ross (1987)  Himself (1 episode, 1987)
The Media Show (1987)  Himself (1 episode, 1988)
Parkinson One to One (1987)  Himself (1 episode, 1988)
Josh, the Logan Legend (1986) Himself
Martin's Day (1985) Martin Steckert
Aspel & Company (1984)  Himself (2 episodes, 1988-1990)
Triumphs of a Man Called Horse (1983) John Morgan - Man Called Horse
Highpoint (1982) Lewis Kinney
Wogan (1982) (1 episode, 1990)
Your Ticket Is No Longer Valid (1981) Jason
Tarzan the Ape Man (1981) James Parker
The Last Word (1979) Danny Travis
Ravagers (1979) Falk
Game for Vultures (1979) David Swansey
The Wild Geese (1978) Capt. Rafer Janders
Orca (1977) Captain Nolan
Gulliver's Travels (1977) Gulliver
Golden Rendezvous (1977) John Carter
The Cassandra Crossing (1976) Dr. Jonathan Chamberlain
The Return of a Man Called Horse (1976) John Morgan
Robin and Marian (1976) Richard the Lionheart / King Richard
Echoes of a Summer (1976) Eugene Striden
Good Morning America (1975)  Himself (1 episode, 1981)
Juggernaut (1974) Lt. Cmdr. Anthony Fallon
99 and 44/100% Dead (1974) Harry Crown
Dinah! (1974)  Himself (3 episodes, 1975)
The Deadly Trackers (1973) Sheriff Sean Kilpatrick
The Dave Cash Radio Show (1972)  Himself - Singer (1 episode, 1972)
Man in the Wilderness (1971) Zachary Bass
The Hero (1971) Eitan
Cromwell (1970) Oliver Cromwell
The Molly Maguires (1970) Detective James McParlan
A Man Called Horse (1970) John Morgan
An Toileanach a Dfhill (1970) Narrator (voice)
This Is Your Life (1969)  Himself (1 episode, 1990)
The David Frost Show (1969)  Himself (2 episodes, 1970-1971)
60 Minutes (1968)  Himself - Actor (segment "Richard Harris") (1 episode,
The Dick Cavett Show (1968)  Himself (4 episodes, 1968-1971)
The Don Rickles Show (1968)  Himself (1 episode, 1968)
The Story of Camelot (1967) Himself (archive footage)
Camelot (1967) King Arthur
The Circle (1967)
Caprice (1967) Christopher White
The Joey Bishop Show (1967)  Himself (4 episodes, 1967-1969)
Dee Time (1967)  Himself (1 episode, 1968)
Omnibus (1967)  Himself (1 episode, 1994)
Once More with Felix (1967)  Himself - Singer (1 episode, 1968)
Hawaii (1966) Capt. Rafer Hoxworth
The Bible: In the Beginning... (1966) Cain
The Milton Berle Show (1966)  Himself (1 episode, 1966)
The Heroes of Telemark (1965) Knut
Major Dundee (1965) Capt. Benjamin Tyreen
I tre volti (1965) Robert (segment "Gli amanti celebri")
Red Desert (1964) Corrado Zeller
The Hollywood Palace (1964)  Himself - Singer (1 episode, 1968)
Cinema (1964)  Himself (1 episode, 1966)
The Eamonn Andrews Show (1964)  Himself (3 episodes, 1965-1966)
This Sporting Life (1963) Frank Machin
Mutiny on the Bounty (1962) Seaman John Mills
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962)  Himself (10 episodes, 1970-1992)
The Merv Griffin Show (1962)  Himself (1 episode, 1970)
Jungle Fighters (1961) Cpl. Johnstone
The Guns of Navarone (1961) Barnsby
The Mike Douglas Show (1961)  Himself (3 episodes, 1969-1974)
The Night Fighters (1960) Sean Reilly
Alive and Kicking (1959) Lover
The Wreck of the Mary Deare (1959) Higgins
Shake Hands with the Devil (1959) Terence O'Brien
Art Carney Special (1959) (1 episode, 1960)
The DuPont Show of the Month (1957) (1 episode, 1958)
Armchair Theatre (1956) (1 episode, 1960)
Cinépanorama (1956)  Himself (1 episode, 1965)
ITV Play of the Week (1955)  Michael O'Riordan (1 episode, 1958)
ITV Television Playhouse (1955)  Dan Galvin (1 episode, 1958)
The Ed Sullivan Show (1948)  Himself - Singer / ... (2 episodes, 1968)
Das große RTL Special zum Film (0)  Himself (1 episode, 2002)

Producer ( 2 credits )

The Return of a Man Called Horse (1976) executive producer
Echoes of a Summer (1976) executive producer

Writer ( 1 credit )

The Hero (1971) (additional material)

Director ( 1 credit )

The Hero (1971)