58 (passed away Oct. 6th, 1973)
Jun. 23rd, 1915
Twyford, Berkshire, England, UK
Dennis Price's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles1974 - Son of Dracula
1973 - Theater of Blood
1973 - Horror Hospital
1972 - The Adventures of Barry McKenzie
1972 - Pulp
1972 - La maldición de Frankenstein
1972 - Tower of Evil
1972 - Dracula vs Frankenstein
1972 - Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
1971 - Twins of Evil
1971 - Vampiros lesbos
1969 - Paroxismus
1969 - The Magic Christian
1967 - Rocket to the Moon
1965 - Ten Little Indians
1965 - A High Wind in Jamaica
1963 - The Horror of It All
1963 - The Wrong Arm of the Law
1963 - The V.I.P.s
1961 - Victim
1960 - The Pure Hell of St. Trinian's
1960 - The Millionairess
1960 - Tunes of Glory
1949 - Kind Hearts and Coronets
1947 - Holiday Camp
1945 - A Place of One's Own
Guest TV Roles
Major Louis de la Tour
Commander Adrian Falconer
This urbane, sourly handsome British actor was born to privilege and most of his roles would follow suit. Born Dennistoun John Franklyn Rose-Price in Berkshire in 1915, Dennis Price, the son of a brigadier-general, was expected to abide by his family wishes and make a career for himself in the army or the church. Instead he became an actor. First on stage (Oxford University Dramatic Society) where he debuted with John Gielgud in "Richard II" in 1937, he was further promoted in the theatre by Noel Coward.
After brief extra work, Price nabbed early star-making film roles in several overbaked Gainsborough mysteries/melodramas, including A Place of One's Own (1945), The Magic Bow (1946) and Caravan (1946), but the one showcase role that could have led him to Hollywood, that of the title poet in The Bad Lord Byron (1949), proved a critical and commercial failure. He took this particularly hard and fell into severe depression. His fatally charming serial murderer in Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949), in which he does in nearly all of Alec Guinness' eight characters (Guiness plays eight different roles), is arguably his crowning achievement on celluloid.
By the 50s Price was suffering from severe alcoholism, which adversely affected his personal and professional career. A marriage to bit actress Joan Schofield in 1939 ended eleven years later, due to his substance abuse problem and homosexuality, the latter being a source of great internal anguish for him. They had two daughters.
Price became less reliable and fell steeply in his ranking, moving into less quality "B" pictures. Eccentric comedy renewed his fading star a bit in such delightful farces as Private's Progress (1956), I'm All Right Jack (1959) and School for Scoundrels (1960). TV also saved him for a time in the 60s with the successful series "The World of Wooster" (1965), in which he played the disdainful butler, Jeeves.
Bad times, however, resurfaced. He filed bankruptcy in 1967 and moved to the remote Channel Island of Sark for refuge. Many of his roles were reduced to glorified cameos and the necessity for cash relegated him to appearing in campy "Z" grade cheapfests, many helmed by the infamous writer/director Jesus Franco, a sort of Spanish version of Roger Corman. Vampiros lesbos (1971) was just one of his dreadful entries. Price also played Dr. Frankenstein for Franco in Drácula contra Frankenstein (1972) [Dracula vs. Frankenstein] and the La maldición de Frankenstein (1972) [The Erotic Rites of Frankenstein]. Fully bloated and in delicate health, he died in 1973 at age 58 in a public ward from liver cirrhosis. A sad ending for one who of Britain's more promising actors and film stars.
- Made his Broadway debut in 1959 with a production of "Heartbreak House."
- Educated at Radley College and Worcester College, Oxford.
- Attempted suicide in 1954 by gas in his Kensington flat.
- His brother was Flying Officer Arthur Thomas Rose-Price RAF. F/O Rose-Price was posted to 501 Hurricane squadron at Kenley on September 2nd 1940 at the height of the Battle of Britain. On arrival Rose-Price flew a mission and before he could unpack his kit flew another mission in the afternoon from which he failed to return and was posted missing.
- He had two daughters with his wife.
- Invalided out of the Royal Artillery in 1942.
- His army officer father was descended from a Cornish baronet's family.
- Born into an upper-class family.
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