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Ronnie Corbett Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (5) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trade Mark (2) | Trivia (14) | Personal Quotes (8)

Overview (5)

Born in Edinburgh, Scotland, UK
Died in Shirley, London, England, UK  (motor neurone disease)
Birth NameRonald Balfour Corbett
Nicknames The Little Wizard
Goliath
Height 4' 11¾" (1.52 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Ronnie Corbett began his successful show business career in the early 1950s. Amongst many other things he performed on stage with Danny La Rue in a cacophony of well received variety and cabaret shows.

It was whilst performing in these shows that Corbett attracted the attention of several top TV producers and executives who were impressed with his abilities as a stand up comedian, compare and all round entertainer.

Before too long Corbett found himself being offered roles in various sitcoms, films and family shows.

His varied film roles include "Polo" in the spoof Bond film Casino Royale (1967), "Drooby" in Mad Little Island (1958) and finally the hapless "Chumleigh" in Fun at St Fanny's (1955).

On television he provided light hearted comedy in Crackerjack! (1955) for many years.

His big break came during the 1960s when he was asked to join the cast of the hugely popular The Frost Report (1966) which included the likes of John Cleese and of course David Frost.

The show also saw him performing alongside Ronnie Barker for the very first time. All aspects of "The Frost Report" were very funny but some of the most enjoyable involved Barker and Corbett who shared a rare comic chemistry between each other.

TV producers recognized this chemistry and there were talks of giving the pair their own comedy series.

Corbett had numerous projects in the late sixties including the enjoyable The Corbett Follies (1969) and No, That's Me Over Here! (1967). Then in 1971 Barker asked him to star in the comedy sketch series The Ronnie Barker Yearbook (1971).

The rest is history - the Two Ronnies had arrived together - it was simply comic genius, Barker and Corbett were made for each other, a pairing that was just destined to be. Later on that year The Two Ronnies (1971) show was born on BBC 1 and remained incredibly popular well into the late eighties when Barker sadly announced his retirement from television.

There is no doubt that Ronnie Barker is the best comedy actor of his generation, but over the years many critics have unfairly overlooked the brilliant talents of Corbett - he is a fantastically versatile comedy actor in his own right. He was an equal part in the relationship - put simply he complemented Barker and Barker complemented him.

As well as being a wonderful comedy actor Corbett is also an accomplished after dinner speaker and of course a very very funny stand up comedian. During the filming of the "Two Ronnies" Corbett found time to branch off into a whole host of other projects as did Ronnie Barker.

First there were his own shows such as All This and Corbett Too (1975), The Prince of Denmark (1974) and The Ronnie Corbett Special (1979). Then came his excellent sitcom Sorry! (1981) which ran for over seven years. There were also films such as No Sex Please: We're British (1973).

Ronnie Corbett has enjoyed continued success in both film and television. He starred alongside old friend John Cleese, and Jamie Lee Curtis in the film Timbuctoo (1998), has done numerous pantomimes with Frank Skinner and Paul Merton and is one of the stars in The All Star Comedy Show (2004) with Steve Coogan, Vic Reeves, Matt Lucas and David Walliams.

In 2005 Corbett reunited with Barker to present a special six part series looking back at their favorite moments from the "Two Ronnies".

Corbett is a charismatic and extremely likable man - there is absolutely no doubt that he will be fondly remembered by millions of people as being not only half of one of the most successful comedy duos of all time, but also as a truly brilliant entertainer.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: A J Lewis

Spouse (1)

Anne Hart (30 May 1965 - 31 March 2016) (his death) (3 children)

Trade Mark (2)

His short stature
His golf jumpers

Trivia (14)

He was created an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 1978 New Year's Honours List for his services to entertainment.
He was the father of Emma Corbett, Sophie Corbett and Andrew Corbett (b. March 1966, d. April 1966).
Despite his small stature, Corbett served in the Royal Air Force as a commissioned officer during his National Service.
At the end of The Two Ronnies (1971), they would always close with Corbett saying "Well, it's goodnight from me", to which Ronnie Barker would reply "And it's goodnight from him".
He attended The Royal High School in Edinburgh, Scotland.
He was a guest panelist in a special celebrity edition of Blankety Blank (1979) on The Prince's Trust 30th Birthday: Live.
His father was a baker.
His firstborn son, Andrew Corbett, died only weeks old at St. Thomas Hospital in London, England of heart problems.
He was promoted to Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2012 New Year's Honours List for his services to entertainment and charity.
He was a guest at the Royal Variety Performance in 1986.
In the 1970s, Corbett and Barker were two of the highest-paid performers in British television. In 1979, he and Barker took their families to Australia for a year which enabled them to exploit a tax loophole and avoid paying the year's income tax, which then stood at 83% in the UK for top earners. Many film stars and rock stars also left the UK in the 1970s for the same reason.
He was on a tribute show to mark the BBC Television Centre's closure, which was called Goodbye Television Centre (2013).
He tells a story in his autobiography of how Stanley Kubrick wanted him for a part in 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) - as an alien.
He was the grandfather of Tom Corbett and Tilly Corbett.

Personal Quotes (8)

Ronnie Barker and I didn't have to knock booze on the head, or go into the Priory to overcome drug addiction. We're fortunate we were quite grown up, family men with children, and lucky with our wives before we had what you might call a touch of fame. We were never temperamental, fractious, or walked out slamming doors. We were fussy, though. We wanted everything doing properly.
We knew what would upset the average man in the street. Our material was good-natured. There's a lot of swearing on TV today. They even have documentaries with the f-word. You get fed up watching shows with not much care and love, reality programmes where they put people in a house for a fortnight and film them doing everything, or where participants arrive after lunch and do the programme at six. How long does it take to make They Think It's All Over (1995)? It's just laughing at each other and thinking, 'Aren't we clever?'
We live in the same world, Bercow (John Bercow) and me: not big enough to play James Bond; not small enough to be adopted by Madonna.
Miranda Hart is outstandingly funny and different in a refreshing, sparkly way. She's wordy and intelligent, yet broad and physical when she wants to be.
The definitive Eric (Eric Morecambe) and Ernie (Ernie Wise) show was a hugely popular number one and we were a close second. That was a nice time in one's life.
When I was small... well, when I was very small...
I think people feel starved of nice, glamorous entertainment. They want to see costumes and gaiety and a singer; old-fashioned entertainment - it won't die easily.
Have you ever noticed? Anybody going slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac.

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