Beverley Cross: Story About Maggie Smith’s Husband

In the 1950s, Beverley Cross, raised in a theatrical family and born in London, began penning plays for young audiences. He later attended the Nautical College Pangbourne. His first play, One More River, dealt with a mutiny in which a crew puts its first officer on trial for homicide, which brought him immediate success. The drama had its world premieres in 1959 at the Duke of York’s Theatre in London under the direction of Guy Hamilton and in 1958 at the New Shakespeare Theatre in Liverpool with Robert Shaw starring.

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About Beverley Cross’ Career

Although the play was never shown in London, Cross’ second piece, Strip the Willow, intended to make his future wife, Maggie Smith, into a star. He translated the 1962 West End production of the French farce Boeing Boeing by Marc Camoletti. He was the play’s director in Sydney in 1964. Half a Sixpence, a musical comedy adapted on the H.G. Wells novel Kipps for which he authored the book, was another hit. Similar to his earlier play, this debuted in 1963 and played for over a year in London.

Additionally, he created opera librettos for Nicholas Maw and Richard Rodney Bennett (The Mines of Sulphur, All the King’s Men, and Victory) (The Rising of the Moon).

Later, Cross rose to prominence for his screenplays, which include Clash of the Titans (1981), The Long Ships (1964), and Jason, and the Argonauts. In addition, he revised Half a Sixpence for the 1967 movie adaptation. Additionally, he contributed uncredited to the script for Lawrence of Arabia (1962), though it is unknown if any of his ideas made it into the final cut.

His Personal Life

Chris Larkin and Toby Stephens, actors who were the offspring of Maggie Smith’s first marriage, had him as their stepfather. At age 66, he passed away in London.

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Who Is Maggie Smith?

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On December 28, 1934, Margaret Natalie Smith was born in Ilford, Essex, England. Her mother was of Scottish origin and worked as a secretary, and Her father was of Anglican descent and a pathologist employed at the University of Oxford. Her older twin brothers were born and raised in Oxford. Up to the age of 16, she attended Oxford High School. After that, she departed to enroll in an acting course at the Oxford Playhouse.

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Her Career

Maggie Smith made her stage debut at the Oxford Playhouse at the age of seventeen in the lead role of Viola in Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night.” Her first appearance on film was in the 1956 film “Child in the House,” while her television debut came two years later in 1954 with a small part in the television series “Oxford Accents.” She also made her Broadway debut in the same year at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre’s world premiere of the play “New Faces of ’56.”

ITV Play of the Week, a British anthology television series, featured her in six of its episodes. In 1959, she was nominated for her first BAFTA for the television movie “Nowhere to Go.” She appeared in several productions at the Royal National Theatre as she saw her career take off in the 1960s. She originated the part of Desdemona in the stage production of “Othello,” and she returned to it for the 1965 movie, for which she received an Oscar nomination.

She appeared in the comedies “Go to Blazes,” “The V.I.P.s,” “The Pumpkin Eater,” and “Young Cassidy” in the early 1960s. She appeared in both the criminal comedy “The Honey Pot” and the television film “Much Ado About Nothing” in 1967. She starred in the crime comedy “Hot Millions,” which was nominated for an Academy Award in 1968, and she took home the award for best actress in “The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie” in 1969.

For her performance, she was also nominated for a Golden Globe and received a BAFTA award. She appeared in the Golden Globe-winning movie “Oh! What A Lovely War” in 1969 as well. She received an Academy Award nomination for her role in the 1972 movie “Travels with My Aunt.”

She appeared in the movie “Love and Pain and the Whole Damn Thing” the following year. She acted in the 1976 Golden Globe-nominated drama “Murder by Death,” and she co-starred in the 1978 drama “Death on the Nile” with Mia Farrow and Bette Davis. She was nominated for a BAFTA, won an Oscar, and won a Golden Globe for her role in the 1978 movie “California Suite,” in which she co-starred with Michael Caine.

Maggie Smith appeared in “The Quartet,” which had its world premiere at the 34th Cannes Film Festival, and she also played a goddess in “Clash of the Titans” in 1981. In 1982, she attended the premieres of “The Missionary” and “Evil Under the Sun.” For her 1983 guest performance on the television program “All for Love,” she was nominated for a BAFTA.

She made an appearance in the Academy Award-winning movie “A Room with a View” in 1985. The movie did well both with audiences and critics, bringing in $21 million against a $3 million budget. Smith’s supporting performance earned her a BAFTA and a Golden Globe.

Maggie Smith was specifically considered for the lead role in the satirical drama “Lettice and Lovage.” She starred in both the American and English versions of the play when it debuted in the fall of 1987. She earned the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play in 1990 for her performance in the American run of the play.

She made an appearance in the 1991 Steven Spielberg film “Hook,” alongside Dustin Hoffman and Robin Williams. She portrayed Mother Superior in the Whoopi Goldberg-starring comedy “Sister Act” in 1992, and she returned to the character in “Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit” in 1993. She received a BAFTA nomination for Best Supporting Actress for her work in the 1993 movie “The Secret Garden.” With the television movie “Suddenly, Last Summer,” she was nominated for her first primetime Emmy in 1993. She appeared in “The First Wives Club,” a 1996 movie starring Diane Keaton, Goldie Hawn, and Bette Midler, which brought in more than $181 million worldwide.

Throughout the 1990s, she continued to perform in plays such as “The Importance of Being Earnest” and “Three Tall Women.” She received a sixth Evening Standard Award for her work in the latter play. She received a BAFTA for her work in the 1999 smash movie “Tea with Mussolini,” which grossed over $45 million in total worldwide during its shooting. She appeared in a 1999 BBC production of “David Copperfield” alongside Daniel Radcliffe, earning her yet another BAFTA nomination.

Maggie Smith and Radcliffe worked together again on “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” in 2001, where Smith played Professor Minerva McGonagall. Over the course of the seven feature films in the franchise, her portrayal of the role brought her international acclaim and notoriety. She started playing the recurring part of Violet Crawley in the popular television series “Downton Abbey” in 2010. She played the same character in the 2019 feature film “Downton Abbey,” which is an adaptation of the television series. She stayed on the program until its finale in 2015.

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Her Personal Life

In June 1967, Maggie Smith wed the actor Robert Stephens; the couple went on to have two kids. In 1975, the couple was divorced. In June 1975, she wed writer Beverley Cross; they were together until his passing in 1998. In addition to disclosing that she had Graves’ disease, she also stated that she was receiving treatment for breast cancer in 2007. She was declared to have fully recovered in 2009.

 

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