Laurence Olivier Biography, Height, Movies, Children, Death

Laurence Kerr Olivier, Baron Olivier was an English actor and director who dominated the British stage in the 20th century. He worked in films throughout his life. Late in his career, he had great success on Television. He often plays roles in Shakespeare adaptations. He was a handsome man with a magnificent speaking voice. He portrayed the role of proud leaders and royalty figures. He was famous for his rich smooth voice.

In 1930, he appeared in his first film. In 1935 he starred a role in Romeo and Juliet and he earned the repute of an established star. He was ranked 46 on the list of 100 top movie stars. He was voted the 20th Greatest Movie Star of all time by Entertainment Weekly. The American film Institute ranked him on 14 number in the list of 50 Greatest Screen Legends.  He received four Academy Awards, two British Academy Film Awards, five Emmy Awards, and three Golden Globe Awards.

Birth 22 May 1907
Birth NameLaurence Kerr Olivier
Nick NameLarry, Kim
OccupationActor, Producer, Director
Years Active1925-1988
Death11 July 1989
SpousesJill Esmond,Vivien Leigh,Joan Plowright

Laurence Olivier Early Life:

Olivier was born on May 22, 1907, in Dorking, Surrey to Agnes Louise and Reverend Gerrard Kerr Olivier. His father began his career as a schoolmaster but later realizing his interest in religious activities, he became a priest in the Church Of England. Olivier was closer to his mother. He called his father a cold parent.

Laurence Education:

In 1916, after attending a series of preparatory schools, he passed the singing examination for admission to the choir school of All Saints, Margaret Street in central London. In a school production of Julius Caesar, his performance as Brutus impressed the audience. He was praised for many school productions.

Olivier attended St Edward’s School, Oxford from 1921 to 1924. He appeared in many school stage productions. He gained praise and appreciation from his teachers and fellow students. In 1924, Gerard told his son to get admission to the Central School of Speech Training and Dramatic.

Laurence Olivier Personal Life:

He was married three times, to the actresses Jill Esmond from 1930 to 1940, Vivien Leigh from 1940 to 1960, and Joan Plowright from 1961 until his death. In 1984, he published his autobiography, ‘Confessions of an actor.

Laurence Olivier Children:

Laurence Olivier had three children from his three marriages. Here are the names of his children.

  • Tarquin Olivier: Tarquin Olivier, born on August 21, 1936, was Laurence Olivier’s son from his first marriage to actress Jill Esmond. Tarquin worked as a television producer.
  • Tamsin Olivier: Tamsin Olivier, born on May 25, 1963, was Laurence Olivier’s daughter from his second marriage to actress Joan Plowright. Tamsin pursued a career as an actress and appeared in various stage productions.
  • Richard Olivier: Richard Olivier, born on December 6, 1961, was Laurence Olivier’s son from his second marriage to Joan Plowright. Richard is a theatre director and co-founder of Olivier Mythodrama, a company specializing in leadership and personal development through the arts.

Laurence Olivier Career:

After leaving Central School in 1925, Olivier worked for small theatrical companies. He made his first stage appearance in August 1925. In 1926, he joined Birmingham Repertory Company, giving him a chance in various roles. In 1928, Olivier starred in the movie Journey’s End, in which he gained great success and fame.

Olivier As An Actor:

Olivier made his Broadway debut in Murder On The Second Floor. His first Hollywood break was through Queen Christiana. He scored a significant triumph as a star of an unabridged 1937 staging of Hamlet. He returned to Hollywood to play the role in Wuthering Heights in 1939. This time,  movie audiences took notice, and Olivier’s subsequently gained international stardom.

Laurence olivier

Famous Movies of Laurence Olivier:

  • Hamlet
  • Marathon Man
  • Henry V
  • Rebecca
  • Richard III
  • Spartacus
  • Wuthering Heights
  • Sleuth
  • 49th Parallel
  • That Hamilton Woman
  • Pride And Prejudice
  • The Entertainer
  • The Devil’s Disciple
  • Othello
  • The Boys From Brazil

Laurence Death:

Olivier had been in ill health for several years including bouts with cancer and kidney ailment. He died on July 12, 1989, at the age of 82.

Total Net Worth of Laurence Olivier:

Laurence Olivier, the acclaimed English actor, had a successful career spanning both stage and screen. While it is challenging to determine an exact figure for his net worth, various sources estimate it to be in the range of $10 million to $20 million at the time of his death in 1989.

Awards and Honors of Laurence:

  • Academy Award For Best Actor in A Leading Role (1949)
  • BAFTA Award For Best Film (1956, 1949)
  • Primetime Emmy Award For Outstanding Performance (1982)
  • Golden Globe Award For Best Supporting Actor (1977)
  • BAFTA Award For Best Actor In Supporting Role (1970)
  • BAFTA Award For Outstanding British Film (1955)
  • BAFTA Fellowship (1976)
  • BAFTA Award For Best British Actor (1956)
  • Academy Honorary Award (1979, 1947)
  • Jussi Award For Best Foreign Actor (1957)
  • David di Donatello For Best Foreign Actor (1957)
  • David di Donatello For Best Foreign Producer (1957)


  • What is the Height of Laurence Olivier?

Laurence Olivier’s height was around 5 feet 10 inches (178 cm) . However, it’s important to note that height measurements can vary, and this figure may not be entirely precise.

  • How Many Movies Do Meryl Streep and Laurence Olivier?

Meryl Streep and Laurence Olivier both have extensive filmographies, with numerous movies to their credit. Here’s an overview of the number of movies they have appeared in:

Meryl Streep: As of my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, Meryl Streep has acted in over 80 films throughout her career. Some of her most notable movies include “Kramer vs. Kramer,” “Sophie’s Choice,” “The Devil Wears Prada,” “Mamma Mia!,” “The Iron Lady,” and “The Post,” among many others.

Laurence Olivier: Laurence Olivier had an illustrious career in both film and theater. He appeared in around 60 films during his career. Some of his notable movies include “Wuthering Heights,” “Rebecca,” “Spartacus,” “Marathon Man,” and “Hamlet,” which he also directed and starred in, winning an Academy Award for Best Actor.

  • How many Oscars Laurence Olivier won?

Laurence Olivier won a total of four Academy Awards throughout his career. Here is a breakdown of his Oscar wins.

  • Best Actor: Laurence Olivier won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance in “Hamlet” (1948). He not only starred in the film but also directed it. This win made him the first actor to win an Oscar for directing himself in a film.
  • Honorary Award: In 1979, Laurence Olivier received an Honorary Academy Award for his outstanding contribution to the film industry. This honorary award recognized his achievements and impact as an actor, director, and producer.
  • Best Actor in a Supporting Role: Laurence Olivier won the Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for his performance in “Marathon Man” (1976). He played the role of the sinister former Nazi dentist, Dr. Christian Szell.
  • Special Award: In 1947, Laurence Olivier received a Special Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for his outstanding achievement as an actor, producer, and director in bringing “Henry V” (1944) to the screen.
  • How Many Children Laurence Olivier Had?

Laurence Olivier had a total of three children throughout his life. Here are their names.

  • Tarquin Olivier
  • Tamsin Olivier
  • Richard Olivier
  • Danny Kaye and Laurence Olivier Movies Together?

Danny Kaye and Laurence Olivier did not appear in any movies together or collaborate on a shared project. Their careers and acting styles were quite distinct, with Kaye known for his comedic and musical performances, while Olivier was renowned for his dramatic roles. Although they were both highly acclaimed actors, there is no record of them working together in any film or project.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Check Also
Back to top button