Monday 20 February 2017

Remembering Peter Rogers


The legendary Peter Rogers was born on this day in 1914. I've always been fascinated with Peter although I sadly never met the man. He was the guiding light of the Carry Ons from their very beginning right through the entire run and beyond. He was such a constant presence and driving force and we quite simply wouldn't have the Carry On films without him.

First and foremost a businessman, Peter Rogers was an unusual figure of very few words. His close friendship with director Gerald Thomas created the Pinewood dream team which churned out hit after hit for two decades. While Gerald was affable and good natured, Peter always seemed quite a reserved chap from any interviews I've seen. There are also all those stories about how the actors were treated during the making of the films and the fact there were never any residuals.

I don't really want to go over old ground on these points as to a certain extent, what's done is done. I prefer to enjoy the classic comedy films they made and the legacy so many of them have left us and the nation. Peter Rogers eye for a winner guaranteed the success of the Carry Ons and we must all be grateful to him for that. The video below was the last filmed interview with Peter Rogers, shot in 2008 the year before he died at the grand old age of 95. 

I don't think any of us ever expected Peter Rogers to leave us, he was such a constant figure at Carry On gatherings and on television talking about his films. Right up to the very end of his life he hadn't given up plans for a further Carry On, whether it be on the big screen or on television. He continued to visit Pinewood Studios well into his 90s and kept an office there pretty much right until he left us. What a man! 

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this trip down memory lane:

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  1. I think that Peter, Gerald Thomas and Talbot Rothwell, perhaps because they're not in front of the camera, never seem to get the credit they deserve. Gerald especially out of everyone I think is the one most responsible for the success of the Carry Ons, having directed every single scene from every film.

    1. Well said. I think Talbot is quite a shadowy figure in their success really which is a shame. Without Peter's determination and tenacity they wouldn't have lasted as long as they did and Gerald's skill and good humour are legendary.