Ollie Fact File

It's a well-known fact the eccentric thespian enjoyed a drink or two. But did you know Oliver Reed once claimed to drink a staggering 106 pints in 48 hours?

Ollie Reed Fact File
  • Oliver Reed's parents split up when he was very young.
  • He suffered from dyslexia and had a difficult time at school as a result.
  • However, he was captain of athletics at school.
  • Unbelievably, Peter the Great, Tsar of Russia, was a distant relative of his through an illegitimate step,
  • Famous relations didn't stop at Russian royals though. Oliver's grandfather was Sir Herbert Tree - founder of RADA, and film director Sir Carol Reed was his uncle.
  • Known as a bit of a hell-raiser, Oliver had to have 63 stitches in his face after being 'glassed' in a bar fight.
  • He was an extra in two Norman Wisdom films;The Square Peg (1958) and The Bulldog Breed (1960) before joining Hammer Horror in 1960 and starring in Sword of Sherwood Forest (1960), The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll (1960), The Curse of the Werewolf (1961), Captain Clegg (1962), The Pirates of Blood River (1962), The Scarlet Blade (1963), Paranoiac (1963) and The Damned (1963).
  • He appeared in the first scene ever to show full male nudity in a legitimate film in a wrestling scene with Alan Bates in Women in Love.
  • Was apparently considered as a replacement for Sean Connery in the role of James Bond.
  • Ollie was offered the role of Quint in Jaws but he turned it down and Robert Shaw played the part instead.
  • Ollie was friends with Keith Moon, the drummer from The Who. Unsurprisingly, they had some infamous drinking binges together.
  • He once claimed to have drunk 106 pints in 48 hours.
  • Allegedly, Ollie went on a pub crawl with Steve McQueen...and was subsequently sick on him.
  • Slightly out of character, Ollie made an advert for low-alcoholic wine with Paula Yates.
  • He suffered from tinnitus (constant high pitched noise in the ear) which affected his sleep throughout adult life.
  • Met Josephine Burge when she was still at school and he later married her.
  • In 1992 Ollie recorded a version of The Troggs hit Wild Thing with snooker player Alex Higgins.
  • Oliver died suddenly in 1999 from heart attack during a drinking session on a day off from filming Ridley Scott's Gladiator on location in Malta. Some of his scenes in the film had to be completed using CGI after his death.
  • He was fond of arm-wrestling and had been wrestling sailors on the day he died.
  • One of Ollie's favourite films was The Duellists (also directed by Ridley Scott).
  • When asked if he had any regrets in his life he replied: 'I regret not having drunk in every bar in the world and slept with every woman in the world.'

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