Lawrence of Arabia
Director: David Lean
Cast: Peter O'Toole , Omar Sharif, Arthur Kennedy, Jack Hawkins , Donald Wolfit, Claude Rains, Anthony Quayle , Alec Guinness , Anthony Quinn, Jose Ferrer, Michel Ray, Zia Mohyeddin.
Wales: Some filming was done amongst the sand dunes of Merthyn Manor, nr Bridgend in South Wales
David Lean's 1962 epic 'Lawrence of Arabia' tells the story of T.E. Lawrence , described as 'one of the most enigmatic figures of the 20th century' and stars Peter O'Toole in the title role. The film also features Omar Sharif, Alec Guinness, Anthony Quinn and Jose Ferrer.
The film begins by showing Lawrence's tragic death in a motorcycling accident in Dorset . Reporters are seen at the memorial service trying to find out about the man behind the legend, but with little success.
We are then taken back to a scene earlier in his life, in Cairo during World War I . The film proceeds to tell the story of this complex man, from his time as an intelligence officer in 1916, through his involvement in the Arab uprising against the Ottoman Empire right up to his untimely death.
Following his glorious years in the Arab countries, Lawrence tried to achieve anonymity by joining the ranks of the army under an assumed name. Few people knew Lawrence well, or the conflict of interests with which he struggled during his life and work. Lean's film has been acknowledged as a masterpiece and highly influential in the world of film making.
The Dorset fatal motorcycle accident was actually filmed at Chobham Common in Surrey. It would indeed be sad to remember Dorset for the accident, as this beautiful English county has so much to offer. Dorset is a popular tourist destination famous among fossil and dinosaur hunters for the Jurassic Coast . The coastline is also loved by those who enjoy the beach and water sports. Large sections of Thomas Hardy country are also in Dorset. Fans of the classic novelist will enjoy the picturesque country villages and towns that inspired Hardy's writings.
Also featured is St Paul's Cathedral, one of the many famous landmarks popular with tourists who are visiting London. The memorial service which opens the film is shot at the cathedral, which was designed by the famous architect Sir Christopher Wren in the 17th century. It is believed to be the fifth incarnation of St Pauls Cathedral to have stood on the site at Ludgate Hill in the City of London.
Some of the desert scenes were filmed at the sand dunes at Merthyr Mawr, near Bridgend in South Wales. The beach there boasts the largest sand dune in Europe, known as the Big Dipper. Ogmore Castle and Candleston Castle are both within walking distance of the village.
A Picture of Britain