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Alec Guinness file photo [21489]

Alec Guinness

SurnameGuinness de Cuffe
Given NameAlec
Born2 Apr 1914
Died5 Aug 2000
CountryUnited Kingdom


ww2dbaseAlec Guinness de Cuffe was born to mother Agnes Cuff and an unknown father in Britain in 1914. He had his first role as an actor on his 20th birthday, and would slowly gain fame in this chosen career in the next few years. In 1941, he entered military service with the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve. In 1942, he was given an officer rank. As the commanding officer of a landing craft, he saw action in the invasion of Sicily, the invasion of Elbe, the invasion of Normandy, and during the Allied attempt to supply arms to anti-German Yugoslavian partisan groups. During the war, he was granted leave to appear in the Broadway production Flare Path, which was a play about the RAF Bomber Command. After the war, he continued his successful Shakespearean career as well as evolving into a film actor. His best film work was often said to be Great Expectations (1946) and Oliver Twist (1948). He was was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1955, and was knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 1959. In 1957, his brief military service and his career in drama crossed paths in the film The Bridge on the River Kwai; he won the Academy Award for Best Actor for that role. In 1973, another WW2-related film took him a completely different direction as he played Adolf Hitler in Hitler: The Last Ten Days. For the later generation, he would be mostly known for his portrayal of Obi-Wan Kenobi in the Star Wars films of the 1970s and 1980s. In 1991, he received an honorary doctorate degree from Cambridge University. In 1994, he was made a Companion of Honour for his accomplishments in the arts. He passed away from cancer in 2000. Guinness was buried in Petersfield, Hampshire, United Kingdom.

ww2dbaseSource: Wikipedia

Last Major Revision: May 2015

Alec Guinness Timeline

2 Apr 1914 Alec Guinness de Cuffe was born in Paddington, London, England, United Kingdom.
5 Aug 2000 Alec Guinness passed away in Midhurst, West Sussex, England, United Kingdom.

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Pine says:
27 Mar 2019 11:56:52 AM

I would love to find more information about Alec Guinness. I've been interested about him for a long time and this page helps out a lot.
2. alan luff says:
24 Sep 2020 08:10:53 AM

l knew sir alec Guinness for many years during my employment at a London hotel.we spoke very often ever those years.sir alec and myself shared a love of koi. he mentioned on occasions things to me that have never been told or published. from what he told me of the sicily landings,he was a very brave man
3. Anonymous says:
28 Jan 2022 06:47:04 AM

I have admired his work for as long as I can remember...he was also one of the generation of actors who at least appeared to have a moral and social conscience...a great actor...thanks for the info.
4. Anonymous says:
15 May 2023 11:40:24 AM

My father known as blonde ,was able seaman on landing craft infantry large 242 ,under command of Alan villiers ,one evening while my father was on sentry duty, a figure came into his view, he naturally called a who goes there but had no reply , on the second and third attempt he placed a bullit up the chamber , he soon got a reply from whom he now knew as Alec Guinness ,my father was put on charge by him ,but in the morning my fathers skipper Alan villiers found out and had the charge against him dropped ,Alan villiers well known for his sailing voyages,was in charge of the whole fleet .dad had fond memories of that great man ,but not a lot has been mentioned in the history of there ww2 deployments.

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Event(s) Participated:
» Invasion of Sicily and Italy's Surrender
» Normandy Campaign, Phase 1

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