ebookclassics

Celebrities in Classics – Colin Firth

colinCelebrities in Classics is a regular feature where I highlight the classic novel adaptations some of my favourite actors have starred in over the course of their career.

WHO IS IT?
If there is any contemporary actor that we associate with the classics, it would be Colin Firth. He has a very long history of playing great characters from classic novels. In the minds of millions of fans, he will forever be known and best loved as Fitzwilliam Darcy from Pride and Prejudice.

WHAT’S SO FASCINATING?
Colin is recognized for his integrity as an actor and has won a number of awards for his work, particularly for his portrayal of King George VI in The King’s Speech. What I admire the most about Colin is his versatility as an actor. He’s not afraid to look silly (see Mamma Mia for a prime example) or take on roles that are the complete opposite of the romantic lead that made him famous.

FIRST ENCOUNTER
Although I have probably seen him in earlier roles, I probably first took notice of Colin when he played Geoffrey Clifton in The English Patient, a husband who discovers his wife is in love with another man and doesn’t handle the news very well.

CLASSIC BOOK FILMOGRAPHY

1984 ~ Camille ~ Armand Duval
1986 ~ Lost Empires ~ Richard Herncastle
1987 ~ A Month in the Country ~ Tom Birkin
1987 ~ The Secret Garden ~ Colin Craven
1989 ~ Valmont ~ Valmont
1994 ~ Master of the Moor ~ Stephen Whalby
1995 ~ Circle of Friends ~ Simon Westward
1995 ~ Pride and Prejudice ~ Fitzwilliam Darcy
1996 ~ The English Patient ~ Geoffrey Clifton
1997 ~ A Thousand Acres ~ Jess Clark
1997 ~ Fever Pitch ~ Paul Ashworth
1997 ~ Nostromo ~ Charles Gould
1998 ~ Shakespeare in Love ~ Lord Wessex
1999 ~ The Turn of the Screw ~ The Master
2000 ~ Relative Values ~ Peter Ingleton
2001 ~ Bridget Jones’s Diary ~ Mark Darcy
2002 ~ The Importance of Being Earnest ~ Jack Worthing
2003 ~ Girl with a Pearl Earring ~ Johannes Vermeer
2005 ~ Nanny McPhee ~ Cedric Brown
2008 ~ Easy Virtue ~ Jim Whittaker
2009 ~ A Christmas ~ Carol Fred
2009 ~Dorian Gray ~ Lord Henry Wotton
2011 ~ Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy ~ Bill Haydon
2014 ~ The Railway Man ~ Eric Lomax
2014 ~ Before I Go to Sleep ~ Ben Lucas
2016 ~ Genius ~ Maxwell Perkins

For more of Colin’s filmography, visit Wikipedia.

FUN FACT
For all you Canadians, Colin lived near Maple Ridge, British Columbia from 1989 to 1995 with Canadian actress, Meg Tilly, whom he considers his first wife.

GREAT QUOTE
“Every single film since [Pride and Prejudice (1995)] there’s been a scene where someone goes, “Well I think you’ve just killed Mr Darcy”. But he is a figure that won’t die. He is wandering somewhere. I can’t control him. I tried to play with it in Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001). I’ve never resented it: if it wasn’t for him I might be languishing … I dare say it will be my saving grace when the only employment available to me is opening supermarkets dressed in breeches and a wig.”

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28 comments on “Celebrities in Classics – Colin Firth

  1. Such a wonderful list of roles! There are lots I haven’t seen and would like to.

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      July 6, 2015

      Me too! I put a hold on The Railway Man recently, but I think I missed it. Magic in the Moonlight is on Netflix, so maybe that’s my next best best. Do you have a favourite Colin Firth movie?

      Like

  2. Brian Joseph
    July 4, 2015

    Firth is really a great actor. I have not seen all the films that he has been in that I want to see.

    Thus your post is reminding me that I am behind in my film viewing.

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      July 6, 2015

      I think I’m always behind in movies too. During my research for this post, I noticed that Colin Firth has been in a lot of movies based on books, but no information as to whether he has read all of them.

      Like

  3. Tony Gonzales
    July 4, 2015

    What about his incredible performance in A Single Man?

    Like

    • Naomi
      July 4, 2015

      He was so good in that!

      Like

    • ebookclassics
      July 6, 2015

      I haven’t seen A Single Man, but when I was researching this post I came across some great clips of Colin and Julianne Moore. It looks like a good movie, is it one of your favourite Colin Firth roles?

      Like

  4. Naomi
    July 4, 2015

    I do love Colin Firth, and it all started with P&P. But, I have liked him in everything I’ve seen. I’m happy to see there are a few good ones on your list that I haven’t seen yet. More C.F. to look forward to!
    I don’t remember him in Circle of Friends. Just looked it up, though, and I’m glad he decided to do away with the moustache. 🙂
    I love his story in Love Actually.

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      July 6, 2015

      I didn’t remember him in Circle of Friends either and I can’t imagine him with a moustache either. Have you seen Girl With the Pearl Earring when he has really long hair?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Naomi
        July 6, 2015

        I can’t remember if I saw the movie or only the trailer. He doesn’t look so good with the long hair, either.

        Like

  5. jessicabookworm
    July 4, 2015

    Colin Firth has been in some great films, but I didn’t realise he’d been in so many classic adaptations. If you want something completely different the last adaptation I saw Colin in was Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015). A bloody and quirky, spy adventure.

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      July 6, 2015

      My friend recommended Kingsman to me, but my husband wouldn’t go for it (obviously not a Colin Firth fan!). I didn’t know Kingsman was based on a graphic novel until I was researching this post (sorry, I know I keep saying that).

      Like

      • jessicabookworm
        July 7, 2015

        That’s okay. If it helps with your husband I’m not sure you need to be a Colin Firth fan. This film is so not what you expect him to be in! Think Kick Ass but instead of superheroes it’s British spies.

        Like

  6. I really like Colin Firth. I especially love him in Pride and Prejudice. He’s a great actor. 😀

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      July 6, 2015

      You won’t believe this, but I only watched Colin in Pride and Prejudice this year! Now I completely understand what the big deal is about.

      Like

  7. A.M.B.
    July 6, 2015

    “If there is any contemporary actor that we associate with the classics, it would be Colin Firth.”

    So true! He IS Mr. Darcy. 🙂

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      July 6, 2015

      Agreed! He really is Mr. Darcy. I also love how they played with Mr. Darcy in Bridget Jones’ Diary. That reindeer sweater is just as adorable as the breeches and flowing white shirt!

      Liked by 1 person

      • A.M.B.
        July 6, 2015

        ” That reindeer sweater is just as adorable as the breeches and flowing white shirt!”

        Indeed!

        Like

  8. I would watch anything with Colin Firth in it, even if he’s playing someone like Lord Wessex in Shakespeare in Love.

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      July 9, 2015

      Me too! I think his natural charm comes through even when he’s playing an unlikeable/undesirable character. Lord Wessex is a fun character to loathe.

      Like

  9. I finally read Pride and Prejudice last year, and now I really want to watch the Colin Firth version. This reminded me that I need to get on that! And I still haven’t seen The King’s Speech either. I have some watching to do!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      July 9, 2015

      Have you seen any other Colin Firth movies? I haven’t seen The King’s Speech either even though I have it on DVD! I think I mentioned somewhere that I read the book and watched the movie for Pride and Prejudice this year for the first time. I’m way behind on the classics.

      Like

  10. friendlybookworm
    July 21, 2015

    That is one impressive list of classics!!

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      July 30, 2015

      Have you watched any of them? Any favourites?

      Like

      • friendlybookworm
        August 4, 2015

        Yeah, I have seen King’s Speech (amazing movie) and Mama Mia too (I couldn’t get past the silliness of the whole movie).

        Like

  11. Ooh Colin Firth – so happy to read your post about him, I think he’s such a talented actor so it was fun to read your thoughts on him. Even though I really enjoy his acting, I realize there are many films I haven’t seen of his – I need to remedy that. That quote of his made me laugh too – I know he probably wouldn’t be happy with it, but what I wouldn’t give to have him open up a supermarket near me in breeches and a wig. 😛

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      July 30, 2015

      Colin Firth could probably spend the rest of his career capitalizing on the popularity of Darcy, but I guess that would be really boring. I borrowed The King’s Speech from the library, but had to take it back before I had the chance to watch it (the story of my life).

      Like

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