Sylvester McCoy


Sylvester McCoy

Infobox actor
name = Sylvester McCoy


imagesize = 300px
caption = Sylvester McCoy at The Television & Movie Store, Norwich, England, on 12 April 2008.
birthname = Percy James Patrick Kent-Smith
birthdate = Birth date and age|1943|8|20|df=yes
location = Dunoon, Scotland
othername =
website =

Sylvester McCoy (born Percy James Patrick Kent-Smith 20 August 1943) is a Scottish actor. He is best known for playing the seventh incarnation of the Doctor in the long-running science fiction television series "Doctor Who" from 1987 to 1989.

Biography

Early life

McCoy was born in Dunoon, on the Cowal peninsula, to an Irish mother and English father. He was raised primarily in Dublin. [cite web |url=http://members.aol.com/scificruise/SylvTalk04.html |title=Sylvester McCoy Says... |accessdate=2007-02-03 |work=The Sci-Fi Sea Cruise website ] In his youth, he trained for the priesthood, but gave this up and spent time working in the insurance industry. He worked in The Roundhouse box office for a time, where he was discovered by Ken Campbell.cite news |title='People buy Doctor Who drinks' |url=http://icberkshire.icnetwork.co.uk/0600whatson/0300theatre/page.cfm?objectid=12810904&method=full&siteid=50102 |work=icBerkshire |publisher=Trinity Mirror |date=2003-04-03 |accessdate=2007-02-03 ] McCoy currently resides in his native country of Scotland with his wife and two children.

Career

He came to prominence as a member of the comedy act "The Ken Campbell Roadshow". His best known act was as a stuntman character called "Sylveste McCoy" in a play entitled "An Evening with Sylveste McCoy", where his stunts included putting a fork and nails up his nose and stuffing ferrets down his trousers, and setting his head on fire. As a joke, the programme notes listed Sylveste McCoy as played by "Sylveste McCoy" and, after a reviewer missed the joke and assumed that Sylveste McCoy was a real person, Kent-Smith adopted this as his stage name. He was also reportedly a bodyguard for the Rolling Stones. Some years later, on discovering that there were thirteen letters in 'Sylveste McCoy' and feeling that this might be unlucky, McCoy added an 'r' to the end of 'Sylveste'.Fact|date=August 2007 Notable television appearances before he gained the role of the Doctor included roles in "Vision On" (where he played Pepe, a character who lived in the mirror), an O-Man in "Jigsaw" and "Tiswas". McCoy also portrayed, in one-man shows on the stage, two famous movie comedians: Stan Laurel and Buster Keaton. He also appeared as Henry "Birdie" Bowers in the 1985 television mini series about Robert Falcon Scott's last Antarctic expedition, "The Last Place On Earth".

"Doctor Who" (1987–1989 & 1996)

He took over the lead role of "Doctor Who" in 1987 from Colin Baker, and remained until the series was shelved in 1989 (see List of Doctor Who serials). He played the Doctor in the 1993 charity special "Dimensions in Time", and again in 1996, appearing in a cameo at the beginning of the "Doctor Who" television movie where he handed the role over to Paul McGann. In his first series, McCoy, a comedy actor, portrayed the character with a degree of clown-like humour, but script editor Andrew Cartmel soon changed that when fans argued that the character (and plots) were becoming increasingly lightweight. The Seventh Doctor developed into a much darker figure than any of his earlier incarnations, manipulating people like chess pieces and always seeming to be playing a deeper game. McCoy generally approved of this, as it allowed him to play more of a dramatic role.

A distinguishing feature of McCoy's performances was his manner of speech. He used his natural slight Scottish accent and rolled his "r"s. At the start of his tenure he used proverbs and sayings adapted to his own ends (eg. "There's many a slap twixt cup and lap" — "Delta and the Bannermen"), although this characteristic was phased out during the later, darker series of his tenure. In 1990, readers of Doctor Who Magazine voted McCoy's Doctor "Best Doctor", over perennial favourite Tom Baker.

Career since "Doctor Who"

McCoy's television roles since "Doctor Who" have included Michael Sams in the 1997 telemovie "Beyond Fear", shown on the first night of broadcast of Five. He has also returned to play the Seventh Doctor in a series of audio plays by Big Finish Productions.

In 1988, while still appearing in "Doctor Who", McCoy presented a BBC children's programme called "What's Your Story?", in which viewers were invited to phone in suggestions for the continuation of an ongoing drama. He returned to host a second run of the series in 1990.

He has also acted extensively in theatre in productions as diverse as pantomime and Molière. He played the role of Snuff in the macabre BBC Radio 4 comedy series "The Cabaret of Dr Caligari".

Sylvester McCoy was the second choice to play the role of Bilbo Baggins in the Peter Jackson "The Lord of the Rings" film trilogy.

In May 2006, McCoy had the main role in The Pocket Orchestra performed at Trafalgar Studios, Studio 2 in London.

. Despite being set in Japan, he was able to demonstrate his ability to play the spoons by using his fan.

In 2007 McCoy appeared at one day Doctor Who events in Melbourne on 29 July, Sydney on 5 August and Auckland, New Zealand on 19 August.

He has also made guest appearances in the television series "The Bill", the "Rab C. Nesbitt" episode "Father" as Rab's mentally ill brother Gash Sr. and the "Still Game" episode "Oot" (AKA "Out"), where he played a hermit type character adjusting to life in modern Glasgow, having remained in his house for over 30 years.

In the early 90s, McCoy was attached in the role of Governor Swann in "" when Steven Spielberg was planning on directing, but Disney did not give permission for the film to be made.

Video games

Sylvester McCoy returned to the role of the "Seventh Doctor" in 1997, recording new audio for "Doctor Who Destiny of the Doctors".

References

External links

*imdb name|id=0566809|name=Sylvester McCoy
* [http://www.kasterborous.com/articles.asp?id=1 Travelling Light - Sylvester McCoy article at Kasterborous.com]
* [http://www.sylvestermccoy.com Sylvester McCoy] - The Unofficial Site
* [http://www.smas.co.nr The Sylvester McCoy Appreciation Society]

Persondata
NAME=McCoy, Sylvester
ALTERNATIVE NAMES=Kent-Smith, Percy James Patrick (real name)
SHORT DESCRIPTION=Character Actor
DATE OF BIRTH=20 August 1943
PLACE OF BIRTH=Dunoon, Scotland, UK


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