Biography

Jovial, twinkly-eyed character actor Cecil Kellaway resembled a full-grown leprechaun, so it's not surprising that he'd play such a role in the 1948 film Luck of the Irish -- and win an Oscar nomination in the bargain. Before coming to Hollywood to play Mr. Earnshaw in the 1939 filmization of Wuthering Heights, the South African-born Kellaway spent nearly two decades as an actor, writer and director of British and Australian films and stage plays. Even when he played a villainous part like the eternally drunken warlock in I Married a Witch (1942) or an unsympathetic role like the cold-blooded psychiatrist Mr. Chumley in Harvey (1950), it was impossible for Kellaway to be completely dislikable. In 1967, Kellaway won a second Oscar nomination for his performance as the tippling priest in Guess Who's Coming to Dinner. Cecil Kellaway was the cousin of veteran British actor Edmund Gwenn. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi