Sir John Clifford Mortimer, CBE QC (born 21 April 1923) is an English barrister, dramatist and author.
Mortimer was born in Hampstead, London, the son of Kathleen May (née Smith) and Clifford Mortimer, a barrister. [ [http://www.filmreference.com/film/69/John-Mortimer.html John Mortimer Biography (1923-) ] ] He was educated at Harrow School and Brasenose College, Oxford.
He was married to Penelope Fletcher, later better known as Penelope Mortimer, in 1949 and had a son and a daughter by her. They divorced in 1971 and he married Penelope Gollop in 1972. They have two daughters. He has five children altogether, Sally Silverman, Jeremy Mortimer, Ross Bentley, Emily Mortimer and Rosie Mortimer and lives with his second wife in the village of Turville Heath north of Henley-on-Thames Oxfordshire.
In August 2004, he learned that he had an additional child he had not known about when he met his son Ross Bentley, more than 40 years after a formerly secret affair with Wendy Craig. The son had been brought up by Craig and her husband, Jack Bentley, the show business writer and musician. In Mortimer's memoirs, "Clinging to the Wreckage", he wrote of "enjoying my mid-thirties and all the pleasures which come to a young writer."
Mortimer is by profession a barrister and was called to the Bar in 1948. He developed his career as a playwright by rising early to write before attending court and his oeuvre includes over fifty books, plays, and scripts.
During the war he worked with the Crown Film Unit, writing scripts for propaganda documentaries. "I lived in London and went on journeys in blacked-out trains to factories and coal-mines and military and air force installations. For the first and, in fact, the only time in my life I was, thanks to Laurie Lee, earning my living entirely as a writer. If I have knocked the documentary ideal, I would not wish to sound ungrateful to the Crown Film Unit. I was given great and welcome opportunities to write dialogue, construct scenes and try and turn ideas into some kind of visual drama." ["Clinging to the Wreckage: A Part of Life" by John Mortimer (1982), page 71] He based his first novel "Charade" on his experiences with the Crown Film Unit.
Mortimer made his radio debut in 1955 when he adapted his own novel, "Like Men Betrayed" for the BBC Light Programme. But he made his debut as a playwright with "The Dock Brief", starring Michael Hordern as a hapless barrister, first broadcast in 1957 on BBC Radio's Third Programme, later televised with the same cast and subsequently presented in a double bill with "What Shall We Tell Caroline?" at the Lyric Hammersmith in April 1958, before transferring to the Garrick Theatre. It was revived by Christopher Morahan in 2007 as part of a touring double bill, "Legal Fictions". [ [http://www.telegraph.co.uk/arts/main.jhtml?xml=/arts/2007/11/19/btlegal119.xml Legal Fiction: Wit, humanity and nostalgic English melancholy - Telegraph ] ]
His play, "A Voyage Round My Father", given its first radio broadcast in 1963, is autobiographical, recounting his experiences as a young barrister and his relationship with his blind father. It was memorably televised by BBC Television in 1969 with Mark Dignam in the title role. In a slightly longer version the play later became a stage success (first at Greenwich Theatre in 1979 with Dignam, then a year later at the Theatre Royal Haymarket, now starring Alec Guinness). In 1981 it was filmed by Thames Television with Laurence Olivier as the father and Alan Bates as young Mortimer.
Mortimer was defence counsel at the "Oz" "conspiracy" trial in 1971. He is also famous for defending the Sex Pistols and Virgin Records in the 1977 obscenity trial over the use of the word bollocks in the title of the punk band's landmark album "Never Mind The Bollocks". In 1976 (Cardiff-South Wales) Mortimer was defence counsel at the obscene abusive case against a young mothers fight to get her child back from Social Services.
Mortimer's most famous creation is a barrister named Horace Rumpole, whose speciality is defending those accused of crime in London's redoubtable hall of justice, the Old Bailey. Mortimer created Rumpole for "Rumpole of the Bailey", a 1975 contribution to the BBCs "Play For Today" anthology series. Played with gusto by Leo McKern, the character proved popular, and was developed into a "Rumpole of the Bailey" television series for Thames Television and a series of books (all written by Mortimer). In September October 2003, BBC Radio 4 broadcast four new 45-minute Rumpole dramatizations by Mortimer starring Timothy West in the title role. He also dramatised many of the real-life cases of the barrister Edward Marshall-Hall in a radio series starring ex-"Doctor Who" star Tom Baker.
In 1986, his description of what he saw as Britain's descent into the viciousness of Thatcherism - "Paradise Postponed" - was televised.
Mortimer was credited with the adaptation of Evelyn Waugh's "Brideshead Revisited" for Granada Television in 1981. However it emerged in "The Devil's Advocate", a 2005 biography of Mortimer, that none of Mortimer's submitted scripts had in fact been used and that the screenplay was actually written by the series producer and director.
Mortimer adapted John Fowles' "The Ebony Tower" for Granada in 1984. He also wrote the script, based on the autobiography of Franco Zeffirelli, for the 1999 film "Tea with Mussolini", directed by Zeffirelli and starring Joan Plowright, Cher, Judi Dench, Maggie Smith and Lily Tomlin.
John Mortimer is a patron of the Burma Campaign UK, the London based group campaigning for human rights and democracy in Burma.
John Mortimer is the president of the Royal Court Theatre.
* "Charade", Mortimer's first novel, Bodley Head, London (1947); Viking, New York (1986) ISBN 0670811866
* "Like Men Betrayed", Collins, London (1953); Viking, New York (1988) ISBN 067081174
* "The Narrowing Stream", Collins, London (1954); Viking, New York (1989) ISBN 0670819301
* "Heaven and Hell" (including "The Fear of Heaven" and "The Prince of Darkness") (1976)
* "Rumpole of the Bailey" (1978) ISBN 0-14-004670-4
* "The Trials of Rumpole" (1979)
* "Rumpole's Return" (1980)
* "Regina v Rumpole" (1981)
* "Rumpole for the Defence" (1982)
* "Rumpole's Return" (1982)
*"", (autobiography) Weidenfeld & Nicolson, London (1982) ISBN 0297780107; Houghton Mifflin, New York (1982) ISBN 0899191339
* "The First Rumpole Omnibus" (omnibus) (1983)
* "Rumpole And the Golden Thread" (1983)
* "Edwin and Other Plays" (1984)
* "In Character" (1984) ISBN 0-14-006389-7
* "Paradise Postponed" (1985) ISBN 0-67-080094-5
* "Rumpole for the Prosecution" (1986)
* "Rumpole's Last Case" (1987)
* "The Second Rumpole Omnibus" (omnibus) (1987)
* "Rumpole And the Age of Miracles" (1988)
* "Summer's Lease" (1988) ISBN 0-14-010573-5
* "Rumpole And the Age for Retirement" (1989)
* "Rumpole a La Carte" (1990)
* "Titmuss Regained" (1990)
* "Great Law And Order Stories" (1990)
* "The Rapstone Chronicles" (omnibus) (1991)
* "Rumpole On Trial" (1992)
* "Dunster" (1992) ISBN 0-670-84060-2
* "Thou Shalt Not Kill: Father Brown, Father Dowling And Other Ecclesiastical Sleuths" (1992) (with G K Chesterton, Ralph McInerny)
* "The Oxford Book of Villains" (1992)
* "" (1993)
* "Under the Hammer" (1994)
* "" (autobiography), Viking, London (1994); Viking, NY (1995) ISBN 0670849022
* "Rumpole And the Angel of Death" (1995)
* "Rumpole And the Younger Generation" (1995)
* "Felix in the Underworld" (1996)
* "The Third Rumpole Omnibus" (omnibus) (1997)
* "The Sound of Trumpets" (1998)
* "The Mammoth Book of Twentieth-Century Ghost Stories" (1998)
* "" (autobiography), Viking Penguin, London (2000) ISBN 0670891061; Viking Press, New York (2001) ISBN 0670899860
* "Rumpole Rests His Case" (2001)
* "Rumpole And the Primrose Path" (2002)
* "Where There's a Will" (autobiography), Viking, London (2003) ISBN 0670913650; Viking, New York (2005) ISBN 0670034096
* "Rumpole and the Penge Bungalow Murders" (2004)
* "Quite Honestly" (2005) ISBN 0-670-03483-5
* "The Scales of Justice" (2005)
* "Rumpole and the Reign of Terror" (2006)
* "The Antisocial Behaviour of Horace Rumpole" (2007)
elect screenwriting credits
*"The Innocents" (1961)
*"Bunny Lake Is Missing" (1965)
*"A Flea in Her Ear" (1968)
*"John and Mary" (1969)
*"Tea With Mussolini" (1999)
*"The Radio Companion" by Paul Donovan, HarperCollins (1991) ISBN 0246136480
*"Halliwell's Television Companion", Third edition, Grafton (1979) ISBN 0246128380
*"Who's Who in the Theatre", 17th edition, ed Ian Herbert, Gale (1981) ISBN 0810302357
*imdb name|id=0607876|name=John Mortimer
*ibdb name|id=71780|name=John Mortimer
*Screenonline name|id=478812|name=John Mortimer
* [http://www.625.org.uk/biograph/biogmort.htm John Mortimer biography]
* [http://www.thehist.com/index.php?option=com_docman&task=cat_view&gid=122&Itemid=598 Recordings] and [http://www.thehist.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=648&Itemid=601 Photos] of the visit by Sir John to the College Historical Society in October 2007.
* cite news
last = Miller
first = Lucasta
title = The old devil: John Mortimer's colourful personal life has provided material for biographers, tabloid scandals and his own fiction. Now in his 80s, he is tackling terrorism and New Labour
publisher = The Guardian
date = 2006-10-07
url = http://books.guardian.co.uk/departments/generalfiction/story/0,,1889441,00.html
accessdate = 2006-10-07
NAME= Mortimer, John
SHORT DESCRIPTION=barrister, dramatist, author
DATE OF BIRTH=1923-04-21
PLACE OF BIRTH=Hampstead, London
DATE OF DEATH=
PLACE OF DEATH=
Источник: John Mortimer