From The "The Time Machine" Pressbook
AFTER LOSING ACCENT, ROD TAYLOR HAD TO GAIN IT
AGAIN AS 'TIME TRAVELER'
Rod Taylor is a young man who wastes no time. Achieving
Hollywood stardom in just four years, the actor now spans a period of some
800,000 years in a motion picture that lasts just one-hundred minutes.
The unique film is Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's "The Time
Machine," produced and directed by master movie magician George Pal from H.
G. Wells' famed novel. Taylor portrays the story's Time Traveler, who makes a
fourth dimensional journey from 1899 to the year 802,701 A.D.
"The role in this science-adventure film offered me
an unusual opportunity," he says. "It was in complete contrast to the
comedy part I played with David Niven and Shirley MacLaine in 'Ask Any Girl.'
Taylor's career in Hollywood has been exceptional in that
he won important roles ever since first arriving in the film capital from his
native Australia in 1955. He appeared in "The Virgin Queen" with Bette
Davis, "Giant" with Elizabeth Taylor, "The Catered Affair"
with Debbie Reynolds, "Raintree County" (again with Miss Taylor) and
in the all-star "Separate Tables," among other pictures. With four
Playhouse 90 starring roles to his credit*, he is also no stranger to TV.
"The Time Machine," however, gives him his first
full-fledged starring role.
When he first came to Hollywood, he worked hard to lose
his British accent. Ironically, in his first movie there, "The Virgin
Queen," he portrayed an Englishman. Since then he has been seen as a
Southerner, a sophisticated New York playboy, a less sophisticated man from the
Bronx and, in "The Time Machine," once again as an Englishman.
"By now I've become completely Americanized," he
says, "and for this new picture I practically had to acquire an English
accent all over again. Actually, an English and an Australian accent are not the
same. But they're close enough so that most people can't tell the
The 5'11", 175-pounder is both handsome and rugged.
In Sydney, he spent three years as a life guard, and at Australian beaches,
that's quite a job. The waters are infested with killer sharks. His swimming
prowess came in handy for "The Time Machine" since one of his
scenes called for him to rescue his leading lady, Yvette Mimieux, from
a raging river.
For a guy who has fought sharks and now skips through
8,000 centuries in a little more than an hour and a half, such movie derring-do
is a cinch.
*Web Note: One of these TV performances
is as Nick Carraway in a TV production of "The Great Gatsby."
Taylor's performance is, in a word, terrific. You can see this program
at when you visit New York's Museum
of Television and Radio, 25 West 52nd Street,
NY, NY 10019.
Web Note two: Wouldn't it be great to
have a lawyer
who could travel back in time to help you prove your case in court?
Don Brockway, Juny 6, 2000 (updated October 12, 2004)
Rod Taylor died January 8, 2015
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