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Je crée ce fil destiné à accueillir les histoires particulièrement intrépides, hardies, de personnages célèbres (ou bien d'inconnus). L'ouverture du bal consacre un destin des plus rocambolesques : celui de David Niven.




Sur sa jeunesse tumultueuse et sa fuite aux États-Unis :



Niven grew tired of the peacetime army. Though promoted to lieutenant on 1 January 1933, he saw no opportunity for further advancement. His ultimate decision to resign came after a lengthy lecture on machine guns, which was interfering with his plans for dinner with a particularly attractive young lady. At the end of the lecture, the speaker (a major general) asked if there were any questions. Showing the typical rebelliousness of his early years, Niven asked, "Could you tell me the time, sir? I have to catch a train."


After being placed under close-arrest for this act of insubordination, Niven finished a bottle of whisky with the officer who was guarding him: Rhoddy Rose (later Colonel R. L. C. Rose, DSO, MC). With Rose's assistance, Niven was allowed to escape from a first-floor window. He then headed for America. While crossing the Atlantic, Niven resigned his commission by telegram on 6 September 1933. Niven then moved to New York City, where he began an unsuccessful career in whisky sales, after which he had a stint in horse rodeo promotion in Atlantic City. After detours to Bermuda and Cuba, he arrived in Hollywood in 1934.





Sur sa conduite durant la guerre :



After returning to Britain in 1940, ex-lieutenant Niven rejoined the army and transferred to the British Commandos, ending the war as a lieutenant colonel. During the Normandy campaign in 1944, he led “A” Squadron GHQ Liaison Regiment, known as “Phantom,” a signals reconnaissance unit reporting from the front lines.  His light touch encouraged his men. “Look, you chaps only have to do this once. But I’ll have to do it all over again in Hollywood with Errol Flynn.”


Niven himself said little about World War II except for his “first story and last.” He was asked by some American friends to find their son’s grave near Bastogne. “It was among 27,000 others, and I told myself that here, Niven, were 27,000 reasons why you should keep your mouth shut after the war.”


The Charming Phantom David Niven


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il y a 13 minutes, Boz a dit :

Dans le genre, Christopher Lee est pas mal non plus.


Oui, il fera l'objet d'un post.

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OK. Une anecdote sur Christopher Lee :



As Adolf Hitler’s forces stormed across Europe in the lead-up to World War II, Lee volunteered to fight for the Finnish in 1939 and eventually enlisted in the Royal Air Force. He spent the war years learning Russian, German, and French, fought Mussolini’s forces in North Africa, was nearly killed twice, and even managed to subvert a mutiny. His many acts of bravery on the battlefield netted him several honors.


But Lee’s military career took a strange turn as the global conflict began winding down. Due to his prolific language skills, he was an obvious pick to serve in the Central Registry of War Criminals and Security Suspects, an organization was tasked with hunting down fleeing Nazis who had committed unspeakable crimes. Due to the sensitive and secretive nature of the registry, not much is known about what Lee and his colleagues did during this period. He often refused to talk about it and, when pressed during interviews, he would routinely say to reporters: “Can you keep a secret? Well, so can I.”


Nevertheless, at least a few stories slipped out. Lee often hinted that the missions he participated in. On the set of one of The Lord of the Rings movies, director Peter Jackson attempted to tell Lee how to behave during a scene in which his character was struck by a dagger. After patiently listening to Jackson’s instructions, Lee coolly informed him, “Have you any idea what kind of noise happens when somebody’s stabbed in the back? Because I do.”


In 1946, Lee returned to the U.K. and eventually decided to become an actor. His language skills and his unflappable persona aided him greatly in the decades that followed. “When the Second World War finished I was 23 and already I had seen enough horror to last me a lifetime,” he once said. “I’d seen dreadful, dreadful things…so seeing horror depicted on film doesn’t affect me much.”






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Le philosophe A.J. Ayer



At a party that same year held by fashion designer Fernando Sanchez, Ayer, then 77, confronted Mike Tyson who was forcing himself upon the (then) little-known model Naomi Campbell. When Ayer demanded that Tyson stop, the boxer reportedly asked, "Do you know who the fuck I am? I'm the heavyweight champion of the world," to which Ayer replied, "And I am the former Wykeham Professor of Logic. We are both pre-eminent in our field. I suggest that we talk about this like rational men". Ayer and Tyson then began to talk, allowing Campbell to slip out.


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