Dinsdale James Landen (4 September 1932 – 29 December 2003) was a British actor whom The Independent named as an "outstanding actor with the qualities of a true farceur," who became perhaps best known for his television appearances.
|Born||4 September 1932|
Margate, Kent, England
|Died||29 December 2003 (aged 71)|
South Creake, Norfolk, England
|Spouse(s)||Jennifer Daniel (1959–2003; his death)|
Landen was born at Margate, Kent and educated at King's School, Rochester. He made his television debut in 1959 as the adult Pip in an adaptation of Great Expectations and made his film debut in 1960, with a walk-on part in The League of Gentlemen.
He first became well known during the 1960s when he starred in the TV series Mickey Dunne and The Mask of Janus, which was renamed The Spies in later series. He also had a parallel career as a stage actor, including as Richard Dazzle in the RSC's 1970 production of London Assurance; and was Olivier Award nominated for his role in James Saunders's play Bodies in the West End in 1979.
His film roles include appearances in Operation Snatch (1962), A Jolly Bad Fellow (1964), Rasputin, the Mad Monk (1966), Mosquito Squadron (1969), Every Home Should Have One (1970), Young Winston (1972), Digby, the Biggest Dog in the World (1973), International Velvet (1978), Morons from Outer Space (1985) and both The Buccaneers and The Steal in 1995.
On radio, he appeared as General Bel Riose in the 1973 BBC Radio 4 adaptation of The Foundation Trilogy, as Dr. Watson in the 1974 adaptation of A Study in Scarlet, and Art Gordo in the 1976 adaptation of Jim Eldridge's novel Down Payment on Death. He portrayed Rupert Purvis in the 1982 production of Tom Stoppard's play The Dog It Was That Died, and played the urbane Ambassador McKenzie in BBC Radio 4 series of Flying the Flag.
Dinsdale Landen was the only actor to play the same character (as private detective Matthew Earp) in two different episodes of "Thriller" ("An Echo of Theresa" and "The Next Scream You Hear" from 1973 and 1974 respectively).
In 1977 Landen starred in his own situation comedy, Devenish, playing a Basil Fawlty-type character in a Reggie Perrin-type situation, designing board games. In 1980 he starred as Barty in the television series Pig in the Middle with Liza Goddard.
Dinsdale Landen died at his home in South Creake, Norfolk, on 29 December 2003 after becoming ill with pneumonia. He had been diagnosed with oral cancer several years before his death, but was in remission at the time. He was married to the actress Jennifer Daniel.
|1960||The League of Gentlemen||Young Man in Gym Receiving Massage||Uncredited|
|1962||Operation Snatch||Capt. Wellington|
|1962||We Joined the Navy||Bowles|
|1964||A Jolly Bad Fellow||Fred|
|1966||Rasputin, the Mad Monk||Peter|
|1969||Mosquito Squadron||Wing Commander Clyde Penrose|
|1970||Every Home Should Have One||Vicar Geoffrey Mellish|
|1972||Young Winston||Capt. Weaver|
|1973||Digby, the Biggest Dog in the World||Colonel Masters|
|1978||International Velvet||Mr. Curtis|
|1985||Morons from Outer Space||Commander Grenville Matteson|
|1995||The Steal||Sir Wilmot|
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