Laurence Olivier was both an enchanter and a force of nature. In The Real Life of Laurence Olivier Roger Lewis goes beyond the magical illusions the actor created to tell the truth about the man's sexuality, ambition, revenges, power, preoccupations and achievements. Most of all, Olivier's life and work become a love story - the tale of the relationship with Vivien Leigh, who was destroyed by the extent of her passion for him, as he himself was cast into a frenzy of guilt and disillusion.
Professor Roger Lewis was born in South Wales and educated in Scotland and at Magdalen College, Oxford. He subsequently became a Junior Research Fellow of Wolfson College, Oxford, before moving to France to work as a full-time writer. His classic biography The Life and Death of Peter Sellers was recently made into a HBO film starring Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson and Charlize Theron. It was in the Selection Officielle at the Festival de Cannes (2004) and has won many international prizes, including Emmys and Golden Globes for Best Film, Best Actor and Best Adapted Screenplay. Professor Lewis has himself been personally honoured by the American Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He currently holds a Visiting Chair at the University of Central England in Birmingham. He divides his time between the Groucho Club, his family home in Herefordshire, a ferienwohnung near Salzburg, and a hut in the Canadian Rockies built by a Red Indian.