Reginald Gardiner

1903 - 1980

English-born Reginald Gardiner graduated from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts and, by the early 1930's, had become an established revue and musical star on the London stage. His first foray into films was in the Alfred Hitchcock-directed The Lodger (1927) in 1926, but it was in Hollywood where his career really took off. At the prompting of Beatrice Lillie, he left for America in 1935. After appearing in two of her shows, he delighted Broadway audiences in "An Evening with Beatrice Lillie and Reginald Gardiner", performing a series of witty impersonations of various inanimate items, such as lighthouses and wallpaper.In 1936, he appeared in his first Hollywood film, Born to Dance (1936), with Eleanor Powell and James Stewart, as a traffic cop with symphonic delusions. His instant popularity resulted in other film offers, and Gardiner was soon in demand as butlers and "silly ass" upper-crust English twits. With his suave attire, thin moustache and obtuse mannerisms, he took to playing

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