Johnston Forbes-Robertson

Picture Johnston Forbes-Robertson

1853 - 1937

The actor Johnston Forbes-Robertson had the reputation to be one of the greates stage actors of his time. One of his greatest success was "Hamlet", who he impersonated at the end of the 19th century and even George Bernard Shaw was enthusiastic about it.
George Bernad Shaw wrote later the role of Cäsar in his play "Cäsar und Cleopatra" especially for Johnston Forbes-Robertson.

His acting career began in 1874 with a role in the play "Mary Queen of scots". In the next decades he became a celebrated star who was impressive in classical as well as modern plays.
On the height of his career he was knighted in 1913, in the same year he made his goodbye performances on British stages before he went to the USA for three years.
After his return to England he retired from acting and appeared only on stages by chance.

Although the film business had not an important position in his career he recognized the possibility in this medium to maintain his work for the posterity. Therefore it presented itself to film two of his most famous performances - "Hamlet" (13) and "The Passing of the Third Floor Back" (18).
Beside it followed only one more silent movie with "Masks and Faces" (17).
Only in 1937 he returned to the spotlight for a last time with the movie "Kathleen Mavourneen" (37).

Johnston Forbes-Robertson was married with the actress Gertrude Elliott.