Edward Albert Arthur Woodward OBE (1 June 1930 — 16 November 2009) was a well regarded British actor who is best known for three iconic roles - the title role in the dark and cynical British spy series Callan, Police Sergeant Howie in The Wicker Man (1973) and Robert McCall in the US series The Equalizer. He also played one of the top villains in Hot Fuzz. Received the Affectionate Nickname "Ewar Woowar" from no less than Judi Dench (reportedly from a theatre marquee where they had run out of 'D's and couldn't bill him correctly) and is fondly remembered by nearly everyone who worked with him. His son, Peter Woodward, is also an actor; the two worked together in an episode of Crusade.
Woodward is said to have taken part in over 2,000 television productions. His own estimate was over 3,000. And he came up with this estimate in 1987.
Woodward won a Golden Globe Award for The Equalizer in '87. He was nominated for an Emmy for each season the series was broadcast. He won a News and Documentary Emmy in 1989 for his work on the documentary, Remembering World War II.
Not to be confused with Ed Woodward, Manchester United's executive vice-chairman.
Tropes associated with Edward Woodward:
- Casting Gag: Was in two films featuring a big-city cop investigating strange crimes involving a local conspiracy in a remote part of the UK. In one, The Wicker Man (1973), he played the cop. In Hot Fuzz he played one of the conspirators.
- Deadpan Snarker: Applicable to the man himself and many of the characters he portrayed (notably Robert McCall, David Callan, Jim Kyle, and Michael Royston).
- Spy Fiction: Makes many appearances in the genre.