Clive Brook

Clive Brook.jpg

QUESTION:  Which of the following Clive's is also an actor?
A). Palmer
B). Davis
C). Barker
D). Owen

As we continue our exploration of the cast and creators of the 1927 film Underworld following our in depth and thought provoking expose of George Bancroft yesterday, we are led into the sordid land of the second male lead in this highly-regarded gangster film: Clive Brook.  That sordid land (which really isn't sordid at all, we just like writing sordid. Sordid.  Funny word when you think about it.) is Great Britain, and Clive Brook was born there in 1887. The son of an opera singer and violinist, Brook served his country in World War I in the Artists' Rifles. After the war, he entered the theater and silent film in his native land, and did well enough to justify a move to Hollywood to become a contract player for Paramount Pictures. 

Between 1924 and 1935, Brook made a name for himself in American film, smoothly transitioning from silent to talking pictures. In the former category was, of course, Underworld. In the latter, his (arguably) best performances were in Shanghai Express, co-starring with Marlene Dietrich and as the famous British sleuth Sherlock Holmes. Brook's time in Hollywood was not especially pleasant for him. In the wake of the Lindbergh baby kidnapping, fear swept through the country that the children of high-profile celebrities might be kidnapped. Brook hired armed guards to take his daughters Faith and Lyndon (future actors themselves) to school, and he slept with a revolver under his pillow. He saw Hollywood as a luxurious prison, a gilded cage, and left as soon as he could justify it to himself. Upon his return to England, he continued his film career before ultimately devoting himself to the theater. He lived until 1974 and lies in rest in Covent Garden.

ANSWER:  D). Clive Owen.  Clive Palmer is a politician. Clive Davis is a music producer. Clive Barker is a novelist.