Screen Icon: Edward Fox

After our look at the finest acting Dames in our latest feature, There's Nothing Like A Dame  it got me thinking of actors that encapsulated the British spirit and one man immediately sprung to mind - Edward Fox. Fox started acting in 1958 after serving as a lieutenant in the British Army (Whilst most likely inspired several of his military type roles, which he's often cast in).  The resilient British star has been treading the boards and appearing in both film and television projects ever since. Here are some of Edward Fox's finest screen moments.

Plot: A hired killer is contracted to kill French President, Charles De Gaulle in the early 1960s. Fred Zinnemann (High Noon, From Here To Eternity) directs this adaptation of Frederick Forsyth's (The Odessa File) novel. 

Joys: This is perfectly executed and captivating piece of filmmaking. Despite knowing the eventual outcome, you cannot help but be gripped for this ride.

How Foxy? Fox is utterly convincing as The Jackal, charming yet ruthless. It's particularly enjoyable to see this well respected actor in a leading role, as you would typically see him in a supporting role.


Plot: A Bridge Too Far looks at the failed attempt to capture several bridges to Germany in a WWII campaign called Operation Market Garden.

Joys: This is the quintessential WWII epic - for the star power alone ABTF is deserving of a watch: Bogarde, Connery, Caine, Caan, Hackman, Redford, Olivier and Fox being just a few of the stars. Richard Attenborough directs and is surely one of the few men that could have made such an epic piece of cinema.

How Foxy? Fox was awarded a BAFTA for Best Supporting Actor and shines in this supporting role as Horrocks, a British Lieutenant-General (a real life figure) who Fox represents incredibly.


Plot: This remake of a 1927 silent film of the same name, is simply a classic British haunted house tale involving a family convening for the reading of a will at a creeky manor house - oh and there's a demented, murderous sociopath on the loose.

Joys: One of the main joys of The Cat And The Canary is the fact that it was produced at the tale end of a decade which gave us The Exorcist and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, yet still prevails in giving us traditional scares and is a welcome back to a more classic forms of horror cinema.

How Foxy? Fox is on absolutely fine scene stealing form as Hendricks, a psychologist. He's joined by the likes of Honor Blackman and Wendy Hiller.


Plot: Once again a war film revolving around the destruction of a bridge, Force 10 (a sequel to Guns of Navarone) sees a team of troubleshooters attempt to destroy a bridge in Yugoslavia. I wonder if there was a specific market for bridge related WWII films?

Joys: It may not have the same acclaim as it's predecessor but this is a truly entertaining and action packed war film. Anyone who has seen Guy Hamilton's work before will be fully aware of what to expect, a somewhat unrealistic, but incredibly good time.

How Foxy? Fox steps into a role previously played by David Niven, managing to make the role his own and brings his traditional charm to the part. He and co-star Robert Shaw have an entertaining on-screen relationship.


Plot: This miniseries looks at the love story of King Edward the VIII and his relationship with American divorcee, Wallis Simpson and his eventual abdication.

Joys: Edward And Mrs. Simpson manages the so-often challenging task of being factual and interesting. There's a real emotional heart of the story which helps. Don't worry W.E. - we still love you!

How Foxy? Fox received a huge amount of acclaim for his role as Edward VIII with many remarking it to be the finest role of his career. Cynthia Harris who played Wallis, has a natural on-screen chemistry with Fox and the pair are utterly convincing.


Plot: This 'unofficial Bond film' from Thunderball producer, Kevin McClory, sees Sean Connery return to the role of Bond, who must stop SPECTRE from firing two nuclear warheads.

Joys: Seeing Connery return to the role for one last time (albeit a lot older) is wonderful. Surely for anyone living in 1983, the chance to see two Bond films in the same year, must have been a treat.

How Foxy? Fox appears as M in a couple of short scenes, enough to make an impression, however. Fox appears a more strict M to his predecessors - it's just sad he was not given the opportunity to star in more Bond films.

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