Sidney Skolsky in HOLLYWOOD
Tintypes: Roddy McDowall


     Roddy McDowall who takes great photographs of the famous, including his own, has to hide behind a 3 hour mask job for "Planet of the Apes" TV series.
     He has always been a money-maker. Smart. He owns part of the action of the series in addition to a fine salary.
     He started out as a child model before he became a child actor.
     He was born in London, Sept. 17, 1928. He was soon evacuated to Hollywood.
     He has appeared in 80 movies and countless TV shows.
     He says: "When I was a child actor, I worked in as many as three pictures at one time. Obviously, the studio wanted to get all they could out of me while I was growing like a weed."
     He is 5-10, has brown hair, brown eyes and keeps his weight at a steady 150 pounds.

* * *
     He is sometimes said to be Elizabeth Taylorís childhood sweetheart. They were always good friends and today are better friends than ever. ("If the friendship continues as itís going, it might outlast diamonds.")
     He looks for honesty and sincerity in interesting people.
     He explains that his philosophy is not to pry into other peopleís business, nor reveal confidences.
     He got a big thrill on the set one day when he was introduced to his still-photographer George Hurrell. He greeted Hurrell with ("Iíve idolized you all of my life"). He insists Hurrell once was one of Garboís favorite photographers.
     He is calm and his favorite color is light blue.

* * *
     He is just about the biggest movie buff. He trades movies with other buffs throughout the country. He can see a favorite picture again and again. Anything with Elizabeth Taylor, Katharine Hepburn, Ava Gardner and such are his favorites.
     He says his record for viewing is six in a day!
     He is also a celebrity buff. And he is a celebrity.
     He left Hollywood for Broadway (1953) to play in several Broadway shows. He was a smash hit in Shawís "Misalliance" revival. He played Octavius in Shakespeareís "Julius Caesar"óthe same role he played with best friend Elizabeth Taylor in "Cleopatra."
     He learns his lines quickly. ("Fortunately, Iím a quick study, but do not retain them, except for plays.")

* * *
     He has a fine singing voice. He was on Broadway and sang in the Lerner and Loewe musical, "Camelot." ("Too many people forget this or never knew it.")
     He maintains an apartment here near Central Park and has a home in the San Fernando Valley.
     He claims he was never domestic but has taken it up during the past few years. He is neat. Everything is in order in the house.
     He takes both showers and baths, but of course not at the same time. He prefers showers.
     He names Shakespeare as his favorite author.
     He refuses to speak about politics.
     He is only critical of himself.
     He likes to travel. He is not a good packer. ("I like to travel, but dislike the process of getting there.")

* * *
     He lists as his favorite cities New York, London and Hollywood. ("Oddly enough I find myself liking Hollywood more than I ever thought I would.")
     He is faithful in his friendships.
     He lists as his pet aversion Unneatness. ("Not being systematic. People who speak and say little.")
     He is always trying to better himself as an actor and as a photographer. If he were to give up acting, he would go into the business of photography. ("Donít forget my book went into two editions. Itís the coffee table type.")
     He was asked what it feels like to be typecast as an ape. He answered, ("Lassie and Flicka were proud of me, too.")
     He believes it is important to understand people.
     He sleeps in a medium size bed. He sleeps soundly. Usually in light blue tailored pajamas.


NEW YORK POST   September 21, 1974


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