Douglas Wilmer

  1. Guido Alberti, La fabuleuse aventure de Marco Polo (US: Marco The Magnificent), Italy-France-Yugoslavia-Afghanistan-Egypt,  1965. Chosen for Pope Gregory X,  the British  Shakesperian actor was the sole surprise in Paris producer Raoul Lévy’s lofty  plans for the Polo story – to be played Curd Jürgens, Burt Lancaster, Alain Delon, or, finally, Horst Buchholz.  Shooting started (with Delon) in ’62, quickly ran out of funds, began again in ’63 (only Gregoire Aslan and Folco Lulli  stayed aboard) and finally opened in ’65 to a wholly disinterested public.
  2. Peter Cushing, Sherlock Holmes, TV, 1968.     Wilmer  was a decent Holmes in  the BBC’s 1964-1965 series of 13 episodes, but pulled the plug on  any more because he wss fed up of rewriting the scripts which were late, riddled with incompetence, ranging from “the brilliant to the absolutely deplorable.” John Neville was asked to repeat his Sherlock from, A Study In Terror, 1964. Eric Porter was next  favourite following his global triumph in Aunty’s Forsyte Saga, 1967.  Finally, Cushing signed on for 16 shows, including The Hound of the Baskervilles, which  he’d already made  for Hammer in 1958.  Cushing played his favourite role a third time (when far too old at 71) in the tele-movie, The Masks of Death, 1983. Alan Wheatley had been the first BBC Holmes in 1951.

 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  2