Image of William Hartnell

William Hartnell

From Wikipedia William Henry Hartnell (8 January 1908 – 23 April 1975), also known as Billy Hartnell or Bill Hartnell, was an English actor. Hartnell played the first incarnation of the Doctor in Doctor Who, from 1963 to 1966. He was also known for his roles as Sergeant Grimshaw, the title character of the first Carry On film, Carry On Sergeant in 1958, and Company Sergeant Major Percy Bullimore in the sitcom The Army Game from 1957 until 1958, and again in 1960. Hartnell entered the theatre in 1925 working under Frank Benson as a general stagehand. He appeared in numerous Shakespearian plays, including The Merchant of Venice (1926), Julius Caesar (1926), As You Like It (1926), Hamlet (1926), The Tempest (1926) and Macbeth (1926). He also appeared in She Stoops to Conquer (1926), School for Scandal (1926) and Good Morning, Bill (1927), before performing in Miss Elizabeth's Prisoner (1928). This play was written by Robert Neilson Stephens and E. Lyall Swete. It featured the actress Heather McIntyre, whom he married during the following year. His first of more than sixty film appearances was in Say It With Music (1932). Hartnell continued to play comic characters until he was cast in the robust role of Sergeant Ned Fletcher in The Way Ahead (1944). From then on his career was defined by playing mainly policemen, soldiers, and thugs. Hartnell's performance in This Sporting Life was noted by Verity Lambert, the producer who was setting up a new science-fiction television series for the BBC entitled Doctor Who; and, mainly on the strength of that performance, Lambert offered him the title role.

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Jan 8, 1908 In St. Pancras, London, England, UK
Movie/TV Credits:
First Appeared:
In the movie Follow the Lady 1933-01-01
Latest Project:
Movie Doctor Who: Twice Upon a Time 2017-12-25
Known For
Poster of Doctor Who
Poster of The Dark Man
Poster of The Agitator
Poster of Follow the Lady
Movie Doctor Who: Twice Upon a Time The Doctor (archive footage) 2017-12-25
Movie Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor The Doctor (archive footage) 2013-11-23
Series Doctor Who The Doctor (archive footage) 2005-03-26
Movie Doctor Who: The Ark The Doctor 1966-03-05
Movie Doctor Who: The Celestial Toymaker The Doctor 1966-04-02
Movie Doctor Who: The Massacre of St Bartholomew's Eve The Doctor/Abbot of Amboise 1966-02-05
Movie Doctor Who: The Gunfighters The Doctor 1966-04-30
Movie Doctor Who: The Tenth Planet First Doctor 1966-10-08
Movie Doctor Who: The Savages The Doctor 1966-05-28
Movie Doctor Who: The Time Meddler The Doctor 1965-07-02
Movie Doctor Who: The Chase The Doctor 1965-05-22
Movie Doctor Who: Galaxy 4 The Doctor 1965-09-10
Movie Doctor Who: The Myth Makers The Doctor 1965-10-15
Movie Doctor Who: The Daleks' Master Plan The Doctor 1965-11-13
Movie Doctor Who: The Keys of Marinus The Doctor 1964-04-11
Movie Doctor Who: Marco Polo The Doctor 1964-02-22
Movie Doctor Who: The Aztecs The Doctor 1964-06-13
Movie The Edge of Destruction The Doctor 1964-02-08
Movie Doctor Who: The Sensorites The Doctor 1964-06-20
Movie Doctor Who: The Dalek Invasion of Earth The Doctor 1964-11-21
Movie Doctor Who: Planet of Giants The Doctor 1964-10-31
Movie Doctor Who: The Reign of Terror The Doctor 1964-08-08
Movie To Have and to Hold 1963-07-01
Movie This Sporting Life 'Dad' Johnson 1963-01-15
Movie The World Ten Times Over Dad 1963-10-31
Movie Heavens Above! Major Fowler 1963-05-20
Series Doctor Who First Doctor 1963-11-23
Movie The Daleks Doctor Who 1963-12-21
Movie Doctor Who: An Unearthly Child First Doctor 1963-11-23
Movie Tomorrow at Ten Freddie Maddox 1962-09-01
Series Ghost Squad Unknown 1961-09-09
Movie Piccadilly Third Stop 1960-09-05
Movie Jackpot Supt. Frawley 1960-01-01
Movie And the Same to You Walter 'Wally' Burton 1960-02-01
Movie Shake Hands with the Devil Sergeant Jenkins 1959-06-24
Movie The Mouse That Roared Will Buckley 1959-07-17
Movie Strictly Confidential 1959-01-01
Series No Hiding Place Unknown 1959-09-16
Movie The Night We Dropped a Clanger Sgt. Bright 1959-10-10
Movie Date with Disaster Tracey 1958-01-01
Movie Carry On Sergeant Sergeant Grimshawe 1958-08-15
Movie Yangtse Incident: The Story of H.M.S. Amethyst Leading Seaman Leslie Frank 1957-04-01
Series The Army Game 1957-06-19
Movie The Hypnotist Inspector Ross 1957-07-29
Movie Hell Drivers Cartley, Hawlett Manager 1957-07-23
Movie Tons of Trouble Bert 1956-01-01
Movie Doublecross Herbert Whiteway 1956-02-01
Movie Private's Progress Sgt. Sutton 1956-02-17
Movie Footsteps in the Fog Herbert Moresby 1955-09-14
Movie Will Any Gentleman...? Detective Inspector Martin 1953-08-25
Movie The Ringer Sam Hackett 1952-11-24
Movie The Holly and the Ivy Company Sergeant Major 1952-12-22
Movie The Magic Box Recruiting Sergeant 1951-01-01
Movie The Dark Man Superintendent of Police 1951-08-05
Movie Double Confession Charlie Durham 1950-04-01
Movie Now Barabbas Warder Jackson 1949-05-24
Movie The Lost People Barnes 1949-08-22
Movie Escape Inspector Harris 1948-03-01
Movie Odd Man Out Fencie - the barman 1947-01-30
Movie Temptation Harbour Jim Brown 1947-02-27
Movie Brighton Rock Dallow 1947-12-12
Movie Appointment with Crime Leo Martin 1946-11-04
Movie The Agitator Peter Pettinger (as Billy Hartnell) 1945-01-24
Movie The Way Ahead Sgt. Ned Fletcher 1944-06-09
Movie Strawberry Roan Chris Lowe 1944-12-31
Movie The Dark Tower Jim Towers (as Bill Hartnell) 1943-10-18
Movie The Bells Go Down Brookes 1943-05-16
Movie Headline Dell 1943-11-16
Movie Suspected Person Saunders 1942-06-01
Movie They Flew Alone Scotty 1942-06-29
Movie Freedom Radio Radio Location Aerial Operator 1941-02-04
Movie They Came by Night Undetermined Role 1940-06-01
Movie Farewell Again Minor Role 1937-01-05
Movie The Crimson Circle 1936-08-10
Movie Midnight at Madame Tussaud's Stubbs 1936-12-03
Movie The Guv'nor Car Salesman 1935-10-01
Movie The Perfect Flaw Vickers 1934-05-31
Movie Follow the Lady Mike Martindale 1933-01-01