Clive Swift

English actor and songwriter (1936–2019)

Clive Swift
Clive Swift 2007.jpg
Swift in Doctor Who: "Voyage of the Damned"
Birth nameClive Walter Swift
Born(1936-02-09)9 February 1936
Liverpool, England
Died1 February 2019(2019-02-01) (aged 82)
Paddington, London, England
MediumTelevision, film
Years active1965–2017
Spouse
Margaret Drabble
(m. 1960; div. 1975)
Children
  • Rebecca
  • Adam
  • Joe
Relative(s)David Swift (brother)

Clive Walter Swift (9 February 1936 – 1 February 2019) was an English actor and songwriter. A classically trained actor, his stage work included performances with the Royal Shakespeare Company, but he was best known to television viewers for his role as Richard Bucket in the BBC sitcom Keeping Up Appearances.[1] He played many other television and film roles.

Life and career

Swift was born in Liverpool on 9 February 1936,[2] the son of Abram Sampson Swift, who owned a furniture shop in Bootle, and Lily Rebecca, née Greenman.[3][4] His elder brother David was also an actor. Both were educated at Clifton College and Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, where Clive read English literature. He was previously[when?] a teacher at LAMDA and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. His family was Jewish.[5]

He appeared as Snug in the Royal Shakespeare Company's 1968 film production of A Midsummer Night's Dream as part of a cast that included Diana Rigg, Helen Mirren and Ian Richardson.[6] During the 1970s, he appeared as Doctor Black in two of the BBC's M. R. James adaptations: The Stalls of Barchester and A Warning to the Curious, as well as the BBC adaptation of The Barchester Chronicles.[6] He is best known for his role on Keeping Up Appearances as Richard Bucket, the long-suffering husband of Hyacinth.[6] Swift made two appearances in Doctor Who, in the 1985 story Revelation of the Daleks and the 2007 Christmas special. Around the time of his second appearance, he gave a "grumpy" interview to Doctor Who Magazine in which he bemoaned "not getting paid" to promote his episode, and belittled the show.[7] He also played Sir Ector, the adoptive father of King Arthur in John Boorman's 1981 film Excalibur.[6]

In addition to acting, he was a songwriter. Many of his songs were included in his shows Richard Bucket Overflows: An Audience with Clive Swift, which toured the UK in 2007,[8] and Clive Swift Entertains, in which he performed his own music and lyrics, which toured the UK in 2009.[9] He also played the part of the Reverend Eustacius Brewer in Born and Bred, which aired on BBC One from 2002 to 2005.[2] His last performance was in an episode of Midsomer Murders in 2017, after which he retired.[10]

Personal life and death

Swift was married to novelist Margaret Drabble from 1960 until their divorce in 1975.[11] He was the father of one daughter, Rebecca (who died in April 2017), known for running The Literary Consultancy in London, and two sons, Adam Swift, an academic, and Joe Swift, a garden designer, journalist and television presenter.[12]

Swift died at home on 1 February 2019, just 8 days prior of his 83th birthday, following a short illness.[13] Paying tribute to Swift, fellow actor James Dreyfus said he "loved this extremely talented, subtle actor".[14] His Keeping Up Appearances co-star Patricia Routledge said: "Clive was a skillful and inventive actor with wide experience, as his successful career proved," and that she was very sad to hear of her former co-star's death.[15]

Filmography

Film

Year Title Role Notes
1965 Catch Us If You Can[16] Duffie
1968 A Midsummer Night's Dream[17] Snug
1972 Frenzy[18] Johnny Porter
1972 Death Line[19] Inspector Richardson
1973 The National Health[20] Ash
1973 Man at the Top[21] Massey
1978 The Sailor's Return[22] Reverend Pottock
1981 Excalibur[23] Ector
1984 Memed My Hawk[24] Magistrate
1984 A Passage to India[25] Major Callendar
1988 Young Toscanini[26] Comparsa Uncredited
1990 Othello[27] Brabantio DVD re-released 2004[28]
1997 Gaston's War[29] General James

Television

Year Title Role Notes
1970 Mad Jack
1971 The Stalls of Barchester[30] Dr. Black
1972 The Liver Birds[31] Jim Royle 1 episode
1972 Dead of Night[32] Dan
1972 A Warning to the Curious[33] Dr. Black
1973 The Frighteners James Machen 'The Classroom', episode (ITV (TV channel)) (4th. May)
1976 Romeo and Juliet[2] Friar Lawrence
1978 Bless Me, Father[34] Fred Dobie 1 episode: "Father and Mother"
1978 1990
1979 Henry IV, Part 1[35] Thomas Percy, Earl of Worcester
1979 Hazell (TV series) Neville Fitch Episode: Hazell and the Baker Street Sleuth
1980 The Nesbitts Are Coming Ernie Nesbitt 6 episodes
1981 Winston Churchill: The Wilderness Years[36] Sir Horace Wilson Last two episodes
1982 Tales of the Unexpected[2] Latham 1 episode: S5, E5 "Stranger in Town"
1982 The Barchester Chronicles[37] Bishop Proudie
1985 The Pickwick Papers[38] Tracy Tupman
1985 Doctor Who Professor Jobel Revelation of the Daleks[38]
1986 First Among Equals[2] Alec Pimkin
1987 Inspector Morse[38] Doctor Bartlett
1987 Pack of Lies[39] Ellis
1988 Journey's End[40] Captain Hardy
1989 British Telecom Cyril (Beatie's brother-in-law in Australia) Television advertisement[41]
1990–1995 Keeping Up Appearances[38] Richard Bucket Main role, 44 episodes
1993 Heartbeat[42] Victor Kellerman 1 episode: "Going Home"
1997 The Famous Five[38] Mr. Pottersham ‘Five Have a Wonderful Time" Part 1&?2
1998 Peak Practice[43] Norman Shorthose 10 episodes
1999 Aristocrats[44] King George II
2002–2005 Born and Bred[38] Reverend Eustacius Brewer
2007 Doctor Who Mr. Copper "Voyage of the Damned"[45]
2009–2010 The Old Guys[38][2] Roy 12 episodes
2011 Hustle[46] Yusef Episode: "The Delivery"
2014 Cuckoo[2] Dr. Rafferty Episode: "Funeral"
2015 Rosamunde Pilcher Edward Whiteley "Valentine's Kiss"[1]
2015 SunTrap Colin Episode: "In the Line of Fire"
2017 Midsomer Murders[47] Felix Hope S19, E2: "Crime and Punishment"(final appearance)

Radio

  • Oblomov as the Doctor (2005)[48]
  • The Right Time (2008)[49]
  • Measure for Measure as Escalus (2004)[50]
  • Jorrocks's Jaunts and Jollities as Nash (2011)[51]
  • The Price of Fear – Remains to be Seen as Fred Treiber (2012)[52]
  • "Vivat Rex" as Lord Talbot in "Henry VI" by William Shakespeare, in episodes 15–16, BBC (1977)

Stage

References

  1. ^ "Clive Swift, classically trained actor with the RSC who was best known on television as the henpecked husband in 'Keeping Up Appearances' - obituary". Telegraph. 1 February 2019. Retrieved 10 January 2022.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Barker, Dennis (1 February 2019). "Clive Swift obituary". Theguardian.com. Retrieved 1 February 2019.
  3. ^ Hayward, Anthony (18 April 2016). "David Swift obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved 18 April 2016.
  4. ^ Clive Swift profile, filmreference.com; accessed 12 October 2016.
  5. ^ Margaret Drabble (20 April 2010). "Art Thou Contented, Jew?". Retrieved 30 July 2014.
  6. ^ a b c d "Clive Swift Obituary". The Guardian. 1 February 2019.
  7. ^ Warner, Sam (30 October 2017). "Hilariously grumpy Doctor Who interview resurfaces". Digital Spy. Retrieved 3 February 2019.
  8. ^ Padman, Tony (5 April 2014). "Whatever happened to Keeping Up Appearances' Richard Bucket?". Daily Express. Retrieved 3 February 2019.
  9. ^ "Clive Swift, star of Keeping Up Appearances, dies". Daily Telegraph. 2 February 2019. Retrieved 3 February 2019.
  10. ^ "The TV legend whose last major role was on tonight's episode of Midsomer Murders". 29 October 2021.
  11. ^ Sadler, Lynn Veach (1986). Margaret Drabble. Twayne Publishers. ISBN 978-0-8057-6907-4. Retrieved 27 July 2013.
  12. ^ Silgardo, Melanie (25 April 2017). "Rebecca Swift obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved 7 May 2017.
  13. ^ "Keeping Up Appearances actor Clive Swift dies aged 82". The Independent. 1 February 2019. Retrieved 1 February 2019.
  14. ^ "Tributes Pour In For Keeping Up Appearances Actor Clive Swift". HuffPost UK. 1 February 2019. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  15. ^ "Keeping Up Appearances' Clive Swift dies". BBC News. 1 February 2019.
  16. ^ "Having a Wild Weekend (1965) - John Boorman - Cast and Crew". AllMovie. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  17. ^ "Midsummer Night's Dream, A · British Universities Film & Video Council". bufvc.ac.uk. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  18. ^ "Frenzy (1972) - Alfred Hitchcock - Cast and Crew". AllMovie. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  19. ^ "Raw Meat (1973) - Gary Sherman - Cast and Crew". AllMovie. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  20. ^ Guide, British Comedy (1 February 2019). "Actor Clive Swift dies aged 82". British Comedy Guide. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  21. ^ "Man at the Top (1973)". BFI. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  22. ^ "BFI Screenonline: Sailor's Return, The (1978)". Screenonline.org.uk. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  23. ^ "BFI Screenonline: Excalibur (1981) Credits". Screenonline.org.uk. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  24. ^ "Memed My Hawk (1984)". BFI. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  25. ^ Barker, Dennis (1 February 2019). "Clive Swift obituary". Theguardian.com. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  26. ^ "Young Toscanini (1988)". Letterboxd.com. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  27. ^ Brooke, Michael. "Othello (1990)". BFI Screenonline. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
  28. ^ "William Shakespeare Othello DVD with Michael Grandage, Ian McKellen, Clive Swift (NR) +Movie Reviews". Swapadvd.com. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  29. ^ "GASTON'S WAR (1997)". BFI. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  30. ^ "The Stalls of Barchester". British Film Institute Database. Archived from the original on 1 June 2009. Retrieved 22 August 2010.
  31. ^ Mumford, Gwilym (1 February 2019). "Clive Swift, actor in Keeping Up Appearances, dies aged 82". Theguardian.com. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  32. ^ "BFI Screenonline: Exorcism, The (1972)". Screenonline.org.uk. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  33. ^ ""No diggin' 'ere!" – Revisiting the ghostly locations of A Warning to the Curious". British Film Institute. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  34. ^ TV.com. "Bless Me, Father: Father & Mother". TV.com. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  35. ^ "Henry IV. Part 1 (1979) · British Universities Film & Video Council". bufvc.ac.uk. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  36. ^ "Winston Churchill: The Wilderness Years". Britishdrama.org.uk. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  37. ^ "The Barchester Chronicles". Trollope Society. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  38. ^ a b c d e f g "Clive Swift - TV Guide". TVGuide.com. Retrieved 1 February 2019.
  39. ^ "Pack of Lies (1987) - Anthony Page - Cast and Crew". AllMovie. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  40. ^ "Journey's End (1988), TV Movie on IMDb film database". IMDb. Archived from the original on 8 March 2021. Retrieved 23 June 2021.
  41. ^ Lipman, Maureen; Phillips, Richard (1989). You Got an Ology?. Fontana Press.
  42. ^ "Heartbeat - TV Guide". TVGuide.com. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  43. ^ "Keeping Up Appearances star Clive Swift has died aged 82". HELLO!. 1 February 2019. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  44. ^ "Aristocrats (1999)". Rottentomatoes.com. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  45. ^ "10 Things You May Not Know About 'Voyage of the Damned'".
  46. ^ "BBC One - Hustle, Series 7, The Delivery". BBC. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  47. ^ "Crime and Punishment – Guest Cast | TVmaze". Tvmaze.com. Retrieved 8 April 2017.
  48. ^ "Oblomov - Episode 1". Radio Times. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  49. ^ "BBC Radio 4 Extra - The Right Time, Series 1, Episode 1". BBC. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  50. ^ "Measure for Measure · British Universities Film & Video Council". bufvc.ac.uk. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  51. ^ "BBC Radio 4 - Classic Serial, Jorrocks's Jaunts and Jollities, Episode 2". BBC. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  52. ^ "BBC Radio 4 Extra - The Price of Fear, Remains to Be Seen". BBC. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  53. ^ "Cymbeline, Gaskill/Allio, Royal Shakespeare Company, July 1962". Ahds.rhul.ac.uk. Archived from the original on 3 February 2019. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  54. ^ "Clive Swift Biography (1936-)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 1 February 2019.

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