History Main / DavidNiven

1st Mar '13 9:28:26 AM MarkLungo
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http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/David-Niven_3753.jpg

David Niven's best known film roles are probably [[ThePinkPanther the Pink Panther series]] (despite being [[EnsembleDarkhorse overshadowed]] by PeterSellers as Inspector Clouseau) and ''TheGunsOfNavarone'', but mostly he's famous for being, by a considerable margin, the most English man ever to go to Hollywood.

Before becoming an actor, Niven was an officer in the peacetime British Army; when the SecondWorldWar started, he rejoined for the duration. A measure of his popularity and success is that after seven years of war, during which he appeared in only two films (both government-sponsored propaganda pieces), he was still the second most popular film star in Britain. It was probably the moustache.

In most of his films Niven played a somewhat effete British gentleman, and looked distinctly out of place in his occasional action roles; this despite the fact that he spent much of the war as a commando.

IanFleming considered him the ideal actor for the role of Film/JamesBond. He only played him once, in ''Film/CasinoRoyale1967'', which most people don't know, and many of those who know it think it doesn't count, being a comedy. Anyone interested in the Golden age of Hollywood should read his memoirs, ''The Moon's a Balloon'' and ''Bring On The Empty Horses''.

!!Tropes associated with David Niven
* AnOfficerAndAGentleman: Niven played a bunch of 'em, but proved to be an aversion in RealLife. Known for his rebellious sense of humor, he was very much a square peg in a round hole, so he resigned his commission, wandered off to Hollywood and found work as a extra. Ironically, his first major speaking role was as the young Captain Fritz von Tarlenheim in the definitive 1937 film adaption of ''ThePrisonerOfZenda''. When he rejoined the service in WWII he was posted to the Commandos with a lot of other mavericks
* CrowningMomentOfAwesome: While presenting at the 1974 Academy Awards a "streaker" somehow gets onstage and runs naked behind him on live television. A startled but amused Niven immediately quipped:
--> "Well, ladies and gentlemen, that was almost bound to happen. But isn't it fascinating to think that probably the only laugh that man will ever get in his life is by stripping off and showing his shortcomings?"
* DeadpanSnarker: When serving in the Second World War, Niven remarked, just before leading his troops into action, "Look, you chaps only have to do this once. But I'll have to do it over again in Hollywood with ErrolFlynn."
** Niven's pre-war army career came to an end when a superior officer asked after a lecture if there were any questions. Niven, who was being kept from a date, snarked back, "Do you have the time, sir? I need to catch a train."
* HorsingAround: Niven recounted an amusing anecdote that happened to him while he was filming ''ThePrisonerOfZenda'' in his memoir ''The Moon's A Balloon'': The director wanted all of his stars mounted on fiery, flashy horses for the royal procession scene. Niven, being an experienced rider, wanted no part of that and bribed the wrangler to give him a nice, safe, gentle mare instead... only to be nearly killed when his nice, safe, gentle mare was mounted by Ronald Colman's stallion.
* NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished: After the war England forced Niven to pay ruinous levels of income taxes on all of the money he'd made from his prewar Hollywood films and nearly bankrupted him in a remarkable show of ingratitude for his wartime service.
* NiceToTheWaiter: The biggest bunch of flowers at his funeral was sent by the porters at Heathrow Airport. The note with it read: "To the finest gentleman who ever walked through these halls. [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming He made a porter feel like a king.]]"
* QuintessentialBritishGentleman
----

to:

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/David-Niven_3753.jpg

David Niven's best known film roles are probably [[ThePinkPanther the Pink Panther series]] (despite being [[EnsembleDarkhorse overshadowed]] by PeterSellers as Inspector Clouseau) and ''TheGunsOfNavarone'', but mostly he's famous for being, by a considerable margin, the most English man ever to go to Hollywood.

Before becoming an actor, Niven was an officer in the peacetime British Army; when the SecondWorldWar started, he rejoined for the duration. A measure of his popularity and success is that after seven years of war, during which he appeared in only two films (both government-sponsored propaganda pieces), he was still the second most popular film star in Britain. It was probably the moustache.

In most of his films Niven played a somewhat effete British gentleman, and looked distinctly out of place in his occasional action roles; this despite the fact that he spent much of the war as a commando.

IanFleming considered him the ideal actor for the role of Film/JamesBond. He only played him once, in ''Film/CasinoRoyale1967'', which most people don't know, and many of those who know it think it doesn't count, being a comedy. Anyone interested in the Golden age of Hollywood should read his memoirs, ''The Moon's a Balloon'' and ''Bring On The Empty Horses''.

!!Tropes associated with David Niven
* AnOfficerAndAGentleman: Niven played a bunch of 'em, but proved to be an aversion in RealLife. Known for his rebellious sense of humor, he was very much a square peg in a round hole, so he resigned his commission, wandered off to Hollywood and found work as a extra. Ironically, his first major speaking role was as the young Captain Fritz von Tarlenheim in the definitive 1937 film adaption of ''ThePrisonerOfZenda''. When he rejoined the service in WWII he was posted to the Commandos with a lot of other mavericks
* CrowningMomentOfAwesome: While presenting at the 1974 Academy Awards a "streaker" somehow gets onstage and runs naked behind him on live television. A startled but amused Niven immediately quipped:
--> "Well, ladies and gentlemen, that was almost bound to happen. But isn't it fascinating to think that probably the only laugh that man will ever get in his life is by stripping off and showing his shortcomings?"
* DeadpanSnarker: When serving in the Second World War, Niven remarked, just before leading his troops into action, "Look, you chaps only have to do this once. But I'll have to do it over again in Hollywood with ErrolFlynn."
** Niven's pre-war army career came to an end when a superior officer asked after a lecture if there were any questions. Niven, who was being kept from a date, snarked back, "Do you have the time, sir? I need to catch a train."
* HorsingAround: Niven recounted an amusing anecdote that happened to him while he was filming ''ThePrisonerOfZenda'' in his memoir ''The Moon's A Balloon'': The director wanted all of his stars mounted on fiery, flashy horses for the royal procession scene. Niven, being an experienced rider, wanted no part of that and bribed the wrangler to give him a nice, safe, gentle mare instead... only to be nearly killed when his nice, safe, gentle mare was mounted by Ronald Colman's stallion.
* NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished: After the war England forced Niven to pay ruinous levels of income taxes on all of the money he'd made from his prewar Hollywood films and nearly bankrupted him in a remarkable show of ingratitude for his wartime service.
* NiceToTheWaiter: The biggest bunch of flowers at his funeral was sent by the porters at Heathrow Airport. The note with it read: "To the finest gentleman who ever walked through these halls. [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming He made a porter feel like a king.]]"
* QuintessentialBritishGentleman
----
[[redirect:Creator/DavidNiven]]
25th Oct '12 4:11:58 PM PatPayne
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* NiceToTheWaiter: The biggest bunch of flowers at his funeral was sent by the porters at Heathrow Airport. The note with it read: "To the finest gentleman who ever walked through these halls. He made a porter feel like a king."

to:

* NiceToTheWaiter: The biggest bunch of flowers at his funeral was sent by the porters at Heathrow Airport. The note with it read: "To the finest gentleman who ever walked through these halls. [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming He made a porter feel like a king." ]]"
28th Sep '12 2:19:14 AM JustKnown
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* AnOfficerAndAGentleman: Niven played a bunch of 'em, but proved to be an aversion in RealLife. Known for his rebellious sense of humor, he was very much a square peg in a round hole, so he resigned his commission, wandered off to Hollywood and found work as a extra. Ironically, his first major speaking role was as the young Captain Fritz von Tarlenheim in the definitive 1937 film adaption of ''ThePrisonerOfZenda''. When he rejoined the service in WWII he was posted to the Commandos with all of the other mavericks

to:

* AnOfficerAndAGentleman: Niven played a bunch of 'em, but proved to be an aversion in RealLife. Known for his rebellious sense of humor, he was very much a square peg in a round hole, so he resigned his commission, wandered off to Hollywood and found work as a extra. Ironically, his first major speaking role was as the young Captain Fritz von Tarlenheim in the definitive 1937 film adaption of ''ThePrisonerOfZenda''. When he rejoined the service in WWII he was posted to the Commandos with all a lot of the other mavericks
28th Sep '12 2:18:16 AM JustKnown
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* AnOfficerAndAGentleman: Niven played a bunch of 'em, but proved to be an aversion in RealLife. Known for his rebellious sense of humor, he was very much a square peg in a round hole, so he resigning his commission, wandered off to Hollywood and found work as a extra. Ironically, his first major speaking role was as the young Captain Fritz von Tarlenheim in the definitive 1937 film adaption of ''ThePrisonerOfZenda''. When he rejoined the service in WWII he was posted to the Commandos with all of the other mavericks

to:

* AnOfficerAndAGentleman: Niven played a bunch of 'em, but proved to be an aversion in RealLife. Known for his rebellious sense of humor, he was very much a square peg in a round hole, so he resigning resigned his commission, wandered off to Hollywood and found work as a extra. Ironically, his first major speaking role was as the young Captain Fritz von Tarlenheim in the definitive 1937 film adaption of ''ThePrisonerOfZenda''. When he rejoined the service in WWII he was posted to the Commandos with all of the other mavericks
27th Sep '12 7:02:24 PM JustKnown
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* AnOfficerAndAGentleman: Niven played a bunch of 'em, but proved to be an aversion in RealLife. Niven's family was at best lower middle class and the peacetime army offered little chance of advancement for someone without aristocratic connections. Feeling very much like a square peg in a round hole he took an extended leave and wandered off to Hollywood, found work as a extra, caught the acting bug and resigned his commission. Ironically, his first major speaking role was as the young Captain Fritz von Tarlenheim in the definitive 1937 film adaption of ''ThePrisonerOfZenda''. When he rejoined the service in WWII he was promptly posted to the Commandos with all of the other mavericks

to:

* AnOfficerAndAGentleman: Niven played a bunch of 'em, but proved to be an aversion in RealLife. Niven's family Known for his rebellious sense of humor, he was at best lower middle class and the peacetime army offered little chance of advancement for someone without aristocratic connections. Feeling very much like a square peg in a round hole hole, so he took an extended leave and resigning his commission, wandered off to Hollywood, Hollywood and found work as a extra, caught the acting bug and resigned his commission.extra. Ironically, his first major speaking role was as the young Captain Fritz von Tarlenheim in the definitive 1937 film adaption of ''ThePrisonerOfZenda''. When he rejoined the service in WWII he was promptly posted to the Commandos with all of the other mavericks
27th Sep '12 5:48:33 PM JustKnown
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* HorsingAround: Niven recounted an amusing anecdote that happened to him while he was filming ''ThePrisonerOfZenda'' in his memoir ''The Moon's A Balloon'': The director wanted all of his stars mounted on fiery, flashy horses for the royal procession scene. Niven, being an experienced rider, wanted no part of that and bribed the wrangler to give him a nice, safe, gentle mare instead... only to be nearly killed when his nice, safe, gentle mare was mounted by Ronald Coleman's stallion.

to:

* HorsingAround: Niven recounted an amusing anecdote that happened to him while he was filming ''ThePrisonerOfZenda'' in his memoir ''The Moon's A Balloon'': The director wanted all of his stars mounted on fiery, flashy horses for the royal procession scene. Niven, being an experienced rider, wanted no part of that and bribed the wrangler to give him a nice, safe, gentle mare instead... only to be nearly killed when his nice, safe, gentle mare was mounted by Ronald Coleman's Colman's stallion.
27th Sep '12 5:44:53 PM JustKnown
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* NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished: After the war England forced Niven to pay income taxes on all of the money he'd made from his prewar Hollywood films, nearly bankrupting him.

to:

* NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished: NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished: After the war England forced Niven to pay ruinous levels of income taxes on all of the money he'd made from his prewar Hollywood films, films and nearly bankrupting him.bankrupted him in a remarkable show of ingratitude for his wartime service.
27th Sep '12 5:43:01 PM JustKnown
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IanFleming considered him the ideal actor for the role of Film/JamesBond. He only played him once, in ''Film/CasinoRoyale1967'', which most people don't know, and many of those who know it think it doesn't count, being a comedy. Anyone interested in the Golden age of Hollywould should read his memoirs, ''The Moon's a Balloon'' and ''Bring On The Empty Horses''.

to:

IanFleming considered him the ideal actor for the role of Film/JamesBond. He only played him once, in ''Film/CasinoRoyale1967'', which most people don't know, and many of those who know it think it doesn't count, being a comedy. Anyone interested in the Golden age of Hollywould Hollywood should read his memoirs, ''The Moon's a Balloon'' and ''Bring On The Empty Horses''.
27th Sep '12 5:42:29 PM JustKnown
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27th Sep '12 5:40:53 PM JustKnown
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IanFleming considered him the ideal actor for the role of Film/JamesBond. He only played him once, in ''Film/CasinoRoyale1967'', which most people don't know, and many of those who know it think it doesn't count, being a comedy. Those interested in Niven or the Golden age of Hollywould should consider reading his memoirs, ''TheMoonsABalloon'' and ''BringOnTheEmptyHorses''.

to:

IanFleming considered him the ideal actor for the role of Film/JamesBond. He only played him once, in ''Film/CasinoRoyale1967'', which most people don't know, and many of those who know it think it doesn't count, being a comedy. Those Anyone interested in Niven or the Golden age of Hollywould should consider reading read his memoirs, ''TheMoonsABalloon'' ''The Moon's a Balloon'' and ''BringOnTheEmptyHorses''.
''Bring On The Empty Horses''.


Added DiffLines:

* NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished: After the war England forced Niven to pay income taxes on all of the money he'd made from his prewar Hollywood films, nearly bankrupting him.
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