Robert Donat – A Life Too Short

The last film line spoken by Robert Donat before his death was “We shall not see each other again. I think. Farewell.”

Robert Donat was a mellow sounding English actor. Donat was born in 1905 and was in his first Shakespeare production by the age of 16.  He began traveling with his theater group and acted all over Britain. Alexander Korda noticed Donat’s acting chops and gave him a 3-year film contract. During this time Donat’s was cast as Thomas Culpepper, in The Private Life of Henry VIII (1933). Donat’s went to Hollywood to work on The Count of Monte Cristo (1934). Based on the strength of his performance he was offered the role of Captain Blood (1935). I can maybe see that casting. Donat’s didn’t like life in Hollywood and continued to avoid roles that forced him outside of Briton.

Hollywood usually had to shoot in England if it wanted him badly enough. And that was not a problem, after the box office reception given The 39 Steps (1935), the …

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