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Peter O'Toole's Biography

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Peter O'Toole was born in Connemara, Ireland on 2 August 1932, the son of a bookmaker.

After leaving school at 14, Peter O'Toole had stints as a journalist and in the submarine service.

After studying at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts, O'Toole acted with the Bristol Old Vic Company from 1955 to 1958.

His first appearance on the London stage was in Major Barbara in the Old Vic in 1956. His film debut was in Kidnapped in 1959. In the same year he acted in the West End hit The Long, The Short and The Tall.

In 1960 he married Sian Phillips, but the marriage broke up in 1979.

Peter O'Toole has been nominated for an Oscar eight times, including for his role in Lawrence of Arabia (1962), and he gained a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2003 at the 75th Academy Awards.

His latest nomination for Oscar was in 2007 for playing Maurice in the film Venus, where his character is an actor who has been reduced to taking roles as dying old men.

Prior to that, together with Richard Burton O'Toole had the record for the most nominations without actually winning an Oscar. In 2007, Peter O'Toole took the top spot for himself after Forest Whitaker beat him to the best actor award.

In an interview with The Times during the filming of Venus, Peter O'Toole told Jasper Rees:

" ... the best thing if you want to know who's going to win the Oscar is to ring the Las Vegas bookies, because there are 100 members of the Screen Actors Guild who back horses. It's what I've done since 1962."

Peter O'Toole gave up drinking in 1975 after an abdominal operation.

His son Lorcan was born in 1983 and the mother, Karen Somerville managed to get a warrant for O'Toole's arrest issued after she claimed he had kidnapped Lorcan. However, a judge ruled that Lorcan should go to school in England and spend the holidays with his mother.

O'Toole starred on the stage in Jeffrey Bernard is Unwell, in 1989, 1991 and 1999 productions.

Peter O'Toole was quoted in The Observer of 1 August 1999 as saying:

"The only exercise I get these days is walking behind the coffins of my friends who take exercise."

In December 2013, Peter O'Toole died aged 81.

Peter O'Toole published two autobiographical works: Loitering with Intent: The Child and Loitering with Intent: The Apprentice.

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