and he knew exactly what he was doing
when he was in a scene.”
So said stuntman Harvey Parry of the classic film actor Peter Lorre. Others who shared the screen with Lorre remarked on his effortless ability to perform in front of the camera, to create and develop a character before their eyes. They also told stories of his practical jokes on-set and the way he dismissed his acting as “making faces”.
It belied the seriousness with which he approached his craft.
This attitude carried over to his view of actor autobiographies. A “racket”, he called it – one of his favorite words, along with “kreep”, “vomitable”, and “daddio”. Lorre explained that his aversion to talking about himself stemmed from modesty, something his father had instilled in him. Not only was it indecent, but it required a certain lack of inhibition.
In the pages of this website, fans will find Peter Lorre’s story told in family and candid photos, poster artwork from his various movies, the answers to Frequently Asked Questions, links to DVDs and CDs of his film, television, and radio performances, and the tribute paid him by a punk rock group called the World/Inferno Friendship Society.
And there is also the biography – The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre, by Stephen D. Youngkin.
In The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre, Youngkin goes beyond the actor’s on-screen image:
Exhaustively researched and objectively told, The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre looks behind-the-scenes at a multi-dimensional life triumphant and yet tragically tangled with failed possibilities.
Finalist for the Theatre Librarian Association Award – 2005
Nominated for CineFest’s International Willy Haas Award – 2007
Now in its third printing!
The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre (2005) by Stephen Youngkin is available in bookstores everywhere, as well as these on-line merchants.
Amazon U.S. – Hard-Cover
Amazon Canada – Hard-Cover
Amazon Canada – Soft-bound
Amazon U.K. – Soft-bound
Amazon U.K. – Hard-Cover
University Press of Kentucky
Barnes & Noble – Nook and Hard-bound
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