Jack Stanley Watling
13 January 1923
|Died||22 May 2001 (aged 78)|
Chelmsford, Essex, England
|Alma mater||Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts|
Life and career
The son of a travelling scrap metal dealer, Watling trained at the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts as a child; and made his stage debut in Where the Rainbow Ends at the Holborn Empire in 1936. He made his first film appearances (all uncredited) in Sixty Glorious Years, Housemaster (both 1938) and Goodbye, Mr Chips (1939).
Watling had a long career in low-key British films, originally in easy-going boyish roles. His early appearances were in Cottage to Let (1941). We Dive at Dawn (1943), The Demi-Paradise (1943) opposite Laurence Olivier, The Way Ahead (1944) with David Niven, The Winslow Boy (1948), Meet Mr. Lucifer (1953) and in Orson Welles' Mr. Arkadin (aka, Confidential Report, 1955). In the account of the sinking of the Titantic, the film A Night To Remember (1958), he played Fourth Officer Joseph Boxhall and in Sink the Bismarck! (1960) as the Signals officer who reports "HMS Hood...has blown up!"
His reputation as an effective and reliable television actor took root in the early 1960s. Between 1964–69 he was Don Henderson, the troubled conscience to tough businessman John Wilder (Patrick Wymark) in The Plane Makers and its sequel The Power Game. Watling also appeared as Doc Saxon in the 1970s series Pathfinders. He played Professor Edward Travers in the BBC science-fiction television series Doctor Who in the serials The Abominable Snowmen (1967) and The Web of Fear (1968), both of which also featuring his daughter Deborah Watling as the Second Doctor's companion Victoria Waterfield. He reprised the role decades later in the independent Doctor Who spin-off video Downtime (1995). He also took over the role of Arthur Bourne in the final series of The Cedar Tree in 1979
Watling was married to former actress Patricia Hicks. He was the father of actress Deborah Watling, actor/politician Giles Watling, sculptor Nicky Matthews, and a fourth child, Adam, who died in infancy. Watling was also the stepfather of actress Dilys Watling, Hicks's daughter from a previous marriage. The Watlings were long-term residents at Alderton Hall, Loughton.
- Sixty Glorious Years (1938) – Minor Role (uncredited)
- The Day Will Dawn (1942) – Lieutenant (uncredited)
- Flying Fortress (1942) – Rear Gunner (uncredited)
- The Young Mr. Pitt (1942) – Atkinson (uncredited)
- We Dive at Dawn (1943) – Navigating Officer – Lt. Gordon, R.N.
- The Demi-Paradise (1943) – Tom
- The Way Ahead (1944) – Buster – Marjorie's boyfriend
- Journey Together (1945) – John Aynesworth
- The Courtneys of Curzon Street (1947) – Teddy Courtney
- Easy Money (1948) – Dennis Stafford
- Quartet (1948) – Nicky (segment "The Facts of Life")
- The Winslow Boy (1948) – Dickie Winslow
- Under Capricorn (1949) – Winter
- Once a Sinner (1950) – John Ross
- The Naked Heart (1950) – Robert Gagnon
- White Corridors (1951) – Dick Groom
- Private Information (1952) – Hugh
- Father's Doing Fine (1952) – Clifford Magill
- Flannelfoot (1953) – Frank Mitchell
- Meet Mr. Lucifer (1953) – Jim
- Stryker of the Yard (1953) – Tony Ashworth
- Dangerous Cargo (1954) – Tim Matthews
- Trouble in the Glen (1954) – Sammy Weller
- The Golden Link (1954) – Bill Howard
- The Sea Shall Not Have Them (1954) – Flying Officer Harding
- Tale of Three Women (1954) – Dick (segment "Thief of London" story)
- Mr. Arkadin (1955) – Marquis of Rutleigh
- A Time to Kill (1955) – Dennis Willows
- Windfall (1955) – John Lee
- Reach for the Sky (1956) – Peel
- That Woman Opposite (1957) – Toby Lawes
- The Admirable Crichton (1957) – Treherne
- The Birthday Present (1957) – Bill Thompson
- Gideon's Day (1958) – Reverend Small
- A Night To Remember (1958) – Fourth Officer Joseph Boxhall
- Chain of Events (1958) – Freddie
- Links of Justice (1958) – Edgar Mills
- The Solitary Child (1958) – Cyril
- Sink the Bismarck! (1960) – Signals Officer
- Nearly a Nasty Accident (1961) – Flight Lt. Grogan
- Three on a Spree (1961) – Michael Brewster
- Mary Had a Little... (1961) – Scott Raymond
- Nothing Barred (1961) – Peter Brewster
- The Queen's Guards (1961) – Capt. Shergold
- Never Back Losers (1961)
- Flat Two (Edgar Wallace Mysteries) (1962) – Frank Leamington
- Who Was Maddox? (Edgar Wallace Mysteries) (1964) – Jack Heath
- The Nanny (1965) – Dr. Medman
- Follow Me! (1972) – Wealthy Client (uncredited)
- The Adventures of Barry McKenzie (1972) – TV Director
- Father, Dear Father (1973) – Bill Mossman
- 11 Harrowhouse (1974) – Fitzmaurice
- The Cedar Tree (1978-9) - Captain Palmer, and then Cdr. Bourne
- Slip-Up (1986, TV film) – Champion
- "Jack Watling". BFI. Archived from the original on 11 July 2012.
- "Jack Watling - Theatricalia". theatricalia.com.
- "Jack Watling". 25 May 2001 – via www.telegraph.co.uk.
- Anthony Hayward Obituary: Jack Watling[dead link], The Independent, 24 May 2001.
- Wearing, J. P. (22 August 2014). The London Stage 1940-1949: A Calendar of Productions, Performers, and Personnel. Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 9780810893061 – via Google Books.
- Shorter, Eric (25 May 2001). "Obituary: Jack Watling". The Guardian.
- "Sink the Bismarck! (1960) - Lewis Gilbert - Cast and Crew - AllMovie". AllMovie.
- "BFI Screenonline: Plane Makers/Power Game, The (1963-69)". www.screenonline.org.uk.
- "BBC - Doctor Who - Classic Series - Photonovels - The Abominable Snowmen". www.bbc.co.uk.
- Muir, John Kenneth (5 October 2007). A Critical History of Doctor Who on Television. McFarland. ISBN 9781476604541 – via Google Books.
- "Jack Watling". www.aveleyman.com.
- III, Harris M. Lentz (16 April 2002). Obituaries in the Performing Arts, 2001: Film, Television, Radio, Theatre, Dance, Music, Cartoons and Pop Culture. McFarland. ISBN 9780786452064 – via Google Books.
- Hadoke, Toby (24 July 2017). "Deborah Watling obituary". The Guardian.
- "Jack Watling". www.nndb.com.