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IN THE NEWS
TOUR OF THE MONTH
ON THIS DAY IN LONDON
18th February 1917 Born today: Phyllis Calvert, London, actress (Man in Grey)
18th February 1901 Born today: Reginald Sheffield, London England, actor (Second Chance)
18th February 1775 Born today: Thomas Girtin, London, artist/watercolorist
One Sexy Beast
Ray Winstone schooled here and an acting legend is born
Location: Green Street, EN3 7NA
Description: It's quite simple really...'Ray Winstone' is the daddy...an acting legend who brings that special something to a role, a play, a drama, a film.
Born on the 19 February 1957 as Raymond Andrew 'Ray' Winstone, Jr, in Homerton, Hackney - his family was originally from Cirencester, Gloucestershire, half of them moved to London, the other half to Wales.
And it was at this primary school - 'Brimsdown Junior School' - that perhaps the seed of acting was sowed. Which ever way you look at it, we have this school to thanks for a great British actor.
Indeed, Ray had an early affinity for acting; his father would take him to the cinema every Wednesday afternoon. Later, he would witness Albert Finney in Saturday Night and Sunday Morning and the bug would bite: ;'I thought 'I could be that geezer' he said later.
Later in his teenage years, he decided to pursue drama and enrolled at the Corona Stage Academy in Hammersmith. At 900 pounds a term, it was expensive, considering the average wage was then about 36 pounds a week.
He landed his first major role in 'What a Crazy World' at Theatre Royal Stratford East, although he danced and sang badly, he never lost the faith and had his first TV appearance was in the 1976 'Loving Arms' episode of the popular police series The Sweeney where he was credited as 'Raymond Winstone' and played a minor part as an unnamed young thug.
And from here of course his career blossomed...Hollywood, TV...Ray has done it all and continues to play great roles in superb productions - plus - he was the star of 'Sexy Beast' - perhaps the greatest British Gangster movie ever! Amen