Eric Portman

Active - 1934 - 1969  |   Born - Jul 13, 1903   |   Died - Dec 7, 1969   |   Genres - Drama, War, Crime

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Biography by Hal Erickson

Yorkshire's own Eric Portman was on stage from 1924, mostly in Shakespearean roles. He kicked off his British film career in 1933, remaining within that country's film industry until his death, save for a brief visit to Hollywood in 1937 to play a minor role in The Prince and the Pauper. Shuttling from hero to villain and back again with finesse, Portman most strikingly demonstrated his versatility in a brace of Powell-Pressburger films of the war years: he played a scurrilous escaped Nazi in 49th Parallel (1941), then portrayed a heroic RAF officer in One of Our Aircraft is Missing (1942). As he grew older, Eric Portman harnessed his haughty bearing to play many a cashiered military officer and down-at-heels aristocrat; either way, his characters seldom removed their noses from the air.

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