"The world of Bryan Forbes is one of wisps and whispers," noted film critic Andrew Sarris in 1968, citing the "muted" quality of director Forbes' best films. While his directorial output does indeed exhibit an inbred sense of quietude and subtlety, Forbes started out on stage in the more loudly demonstrative category of "actor." After wartime service, Forbes made his film-acting debut in The Small Back Room (1948). He continued as a performer and screenwriter until 1961, when he made an auspicious directorial bow in Whistle Down the Wind (1961). He subsequently directed (and sometimes produced and/or wrote) such critical and audience favorites as The L-Shaped Room (1962), Seance on a Wet Afternoon (1964), King Rat (1965), The Whisperers (1966), The Stepford Wives (1975) and Hopscotch (1980). From 1969 through 1971, Forbes was chief of production/managing director of EMI Studios. Bryan Forbes was married to actresses Constance Smith and Nanette Newman respectively, the latter appearing prominently in many of his films of the 1960s. He was named a Commander of the British Empire in 2004 for his services to the arts. Forbes died in 2013 at the age of 86.