Apr. 22nd, 1925
Tooting, London, England, UK
George Cole's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles1996 - Mary Reilly
1971 - Fright
1970 - The Vampire Lovers
1966 - The Great St. Trinian's Train Robbery
1963 - Cleopatra
1963 - Dr. Syn, Alias the Scarecrow
1960 - The Pure Hell of St. Trinian's
1957 - The Weapon
1957 - Blue Murder at St. Trinian's
1954 - The Belles of St. Trinian's
1954 - An Inspector Calls
1944 - The Chronicle History of King Henry the Fift with His Battell Fought at Agincourt in France
Guest TV Roles
George Cole has had an impressive career both in television and in film. His acting talents, however, have gone largely unsung. Which is a great shame, for he is responsible for creating one of the most endearing characters of recent times on British television.
The character is of course "Arthur Daley", the shifty but very likable ducking and diving "business man" in the long lived ITV drama series "Minder" (1979).
As a result of this character, the term "Arthur Daley" soon entered the every day English language as slang for a "dodgy" misdemeanor or task, and the series enabled George Cole to become a household name.
"Minder"'s Arthur Daley was the only true rival to the BBC's "Delboy Trotter" from "Only Fools and Horses" (1981) and they often contended head to head in television ratings. Sometimes "Minder" won, sometimes "Only Fools and Horses" won, but "Minder" was a drama, whereas "Only Fools and Horses" was a sitcom, which allowed the two shows and characters to exist side by side very happily indeed.
Before "Minder", George featured in countless films and television programmes, becoming a regular and much loved face on British television.
Following on from "Minder", he still regularly appeared on television, although it seems he favors a more relaxed approach to acting these days probably because he has semi-retired from this business they call show business!
It is a shame that he will probably be remembered only for "Arthur Daley", because George Cole should be remembered for being not only a fine actor, skillful at playing both straight and comedic roles, but also as an extremely likable charismatic man.
- He was awarded the O.B.E. (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) for his services to drama.
- (1940) Accompanied a pal to an audition but finished up getting the part instead of his pal. That was for the play "Cottage to Let", which led to his appearance in the film, _Cottage to Let (1941)_ (qv).
- Became a pop star in 1983 when his duet with 'Dennis Waterman' (qv), "What Are We Gonna Get 'Er Indoors?", reached the number 21 position on the UK chart.
- Was taken in (along with his mother) by 'Alastair Sim' (qv) and his wife Naomi. Alastair then took over his education and trained him as an actor.
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