Henry Daniell (Who’s Who at MGM, 1937) 🇺🇸

January 08, 2022

A veteran of the World War in the service of the British Army, a world-traveler and gay trouper, Henry Daniell gathered his experience for the stage from life and brought it to the screen.

Born in Derby, England, March 5, Daniell was educated at the famous St. Paul’s School in London. He enjoyed amateur dramatics, which led him to the stage. The theater of the Big Show in Flanders awarded him an active part which he played successfully, then returned to what is known as the legitimate in London.

He appeared with Ruth London in “Serena Blandish,” “The Second Mrs. Tanqueray,” “The Last of Mrs. Cheyney,” with Gladys Cooper; “Return Journey,” with Geraldine Harris; “Kind Lady,” with Grace George; “Scents,” with Fay Compton; “Cobra,” “Alibi.”

Played With Eagels

His first picture was “Jealousy,” with Jeanne Eagels, in New York in 1929. Others include “The Awful Truth,” with Ina Claire; “Jealousy,” “The Path of Glory,” and, under his contract with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Camille, with Greta Garbo; “The Unguarded Hour,” “Under Cover of Night,” with Edmund Lowe and Florence Rice; “The Thirteenth Chair,” “The Firefly,” “Madame X” and “The Last Gangster.”

Daniell is six feet one inch tall, and weighs 170 pounds. His hair is brown and his eyes blue. His characteristic British reserve is evident at all times, although he opens up with intimate friends.

He is a ranking tennis player in the Hollywood colony and a social favorite in a circle of selected friends. Daniell is not one of the boulevardiers and seldom is seen in the gay night clubs. But he is encountered frequently by some of Hollywood’s other male stars who steal away for hunting trips and fishing expeditions.

Seldom Goes to Pictures

He seldom attends the moving picture theatres, preferring to have a group of friends come to visit him and his wife for an evening. They gather around the fireplace and talk of every subject under the sun. His favorite pet is a chow dog and his favorite color is turquoise.

As a boy at St. Paul’s School, Henry had a strong aversion to study. When he should have been pursuing his trigonometry lesson, he was sitting high up in the gallery of some theatre, avidly breathing in the atmosphere of the stage.

He was convinced that the easiest life in the world would be an actor’s career. Everything connected with the stage seemed like play and he was sure that acting would be fun compared to any other work. And he was sick and tired of studying.

Acting No Easy Job

But he found that learning to act required more extensive study than anything he had ever attempted. He has studied continuously during his entire stage and screen career. Yet now that he is entitled to a vacation from his arduous studies, he has launched himself on a new career which necessitates even more study than before.

This new occupation of Daniell’s is playwriting. Aided by his wife, Henry is making a thorough study of plots, dialogue and play construction. When he has learned enough of the intricate details, he hopes to write a play worthy of production.

Because of his intense seriousness about his acting and his plans for writing, Daniell is a quiet, retiring man. He is slow to make friends, but once he makes them he is as loyal as his reserve is rigid.

Source: Who’s Who at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 1937