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Hall of Fame

SHAPS, Cyril

shapsBless little Cyril, he was hardly out of a labcoat in films long enough to get any other sort of part. Or at least he seemed to be always playing a doctor, he certainly did so on a good half dozen occasions in everything from Spy thriller The Kremlin Letter, to spy thriller The Spy Who Loved Me. Yes, let no one say that narrowness of range was Cyril’s problem. Mostly because it’s perfectly obvious it was. Officialdom was his domain and he most often took part in a feature as the sniffy and eagle-eyed bureaucrat or cleric or civil servant charged with ensuring some plot was happily driven on, often by his own demise. Unfortunately this meant the chances for his survival to the end of a film were always going to be hovering somewhere down the bottom of the ladder on the game boards of Winner Takes All. But still, in the likes of Follow that Horse! and The Spaceman and King Arthur it made him fun to watch.

FINEST HOUR: Being given a holiday at government expense by Max von Sydow in The Kremlin Letter.

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