Roy Lockwood

Biography taken from

Date of Birth - 8th June 1907, Bristol, Great Britain

Date of Death - 25th April 2002, Yarmouth, Maine, USA

Roy Lockwood, pioneer of British cinema, died at his home in Yarmouth, Maine, on April 25, 2002, six weeks shy of his 95th birthday. Born in Bristol, England, in 1907, Lockwood trained as a pianist from an early age and served as the organist at the Exeter College Chapel while he attended Oxford University. He began his career in filmmaking while at Oxford where he made his first film "Counterpoint", which premiered in London in 1930. After graduating he went to the British International Studios at Elstree, where he worked as an assistant director and film editor. His first major directorial success was the 1937 adaptation of Jack London's The Mutiny of the Elsinore (1937), which received enthusiastic reviews both in England and in the US.

Lockwood's career in the entertainment industry included time in Hollywood, although he spent the bulk of his career in the radio, film, TV and theater world of New York City. Shortly after his arrival in the US, Universal Pictures brought him in to help with The Invisible Man Returns (1940) with Vincent Price. In 1957 he directed Jamboree (1957) for Warner Brothers, one of the earliest rock 'n' roll extravaganzas; the cast included Jerry Lee Lewis, Fats Domino, Frankie Avalon, Count Basie and a young Dick Clark.

In New York Lockwood directed and produced radio programs for both NBC and the BBC, including a notable radio production of the ballad opera "The Martins and the Coys", featuring Woody Guthrie, Burl Ives, Lee Hayes, Pete Seeger and Lily Mae Pearson. He also was a producer for several years with the film version of Henry Luce's "March of Time" series before moving to television at CBS under Edward R. Murrow.

Toward the end of his career, Lockwood worked in the advertising industry, directing numerous commercials for national brands, including one starring a young actor named Ronald Reagan. His final film was the award-winning documentary "Athabasca", which chronicled Sun Oil Co.'s efforts to tap the Athabasca oil sands in Alberta, Canada. During his years in New York City Lockwood was a member of The Coffee House, an unusual private club formed in 1915 as a "sanctuary" for those in the arts and journalism so long as "the high measure of their renown had not too greatly inflated their personal egos". An avid sailor of the North Atlantic, Lockwood's accounts of sailing trips were published by "Yachting" magazine and the Cruising Club of America, of which he was a member for many years.

After his retirement in 1970, he moved with his family and sailboat to Cumberland, Maine, and subsequently to Yarmouth, where he resided over 30 years. In celebration of his 90th birthday, his daughter and son-in-law tracked down an archival print of "Mutiny of the Elsinore" and arranged to have it transferred to videotape, which eventually resulted in its commercial release on video.

He leaves his wife of 42 years, Betty Lockwood of Yarmouth; his daughter Lucy Lockwood of Rowley, Massachusetts; two grandchildren, Devan and Tovah of Rowley; and two nieces, Margaret Lewis and Jill Christiansen in Australia.

Details of the film Airport that he directed in 1934 can be found at:- 

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