Documents, letters, photos and the writings of Peter O’Toole has been bought by the University of Texas at Austin’s Harry Ransom Center, including drafts of O’Toole’s unfinished third memoir dealing with his career on stage and screen.
The extensive archive contains theater and film scripts along with O’Toole’s including drafts, notes and working material for his multi-volume memoir Loitering with Intent. This part of the estate totals 55 boxes in all and includes his handwritten draft and typed cards for his Honorary Oscar acceptance speech at the 75th Academy Awards in 2003.
O’Toole was an eight-time Oscar-nominated actor, for Lawrence of Arabia (1962), Becket (1964), The Lion in Winter (1968), Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1969), The Ruling Class (1972), The Stunt Man (1980), My Favorite Year (1982) and Venus (2006). O’Toole was also a distinguished stage actor who performed in the theater from the 1950s through 1999.
The boxes also contain correspondence between O’Toole and Marlon Brando, Katharine Hepburn, Laurence Olivier, Paul Newman, Michael Caine, John Gielgud, Dustin Hoffman, Jeremy Irons, Peter Hall, Spike Milligan, Trevor Nunn, Harold Pinter, Michael Blakemore, Kevin Spacey and many others.
“It is with a respect for the past and an eye to the future that I recognize the importance of making my father’s archive accessible and preserving it for future generations,” said his daughter Kate O’Toole in helping to make the announcement. “Thanks to the nature of film, my father’s work has already been immortalized. The Ransom Center now provides a world-class home for the private thoughts, conversations, notes and stories that illuminate such a long and distinguished career.”
The materials join other collections at the Ransom Center that document the works of stage and screen performers, including Robert De Niro, Eli Wallach, George Bernard Shaw, Stella Adler, Edith Evans, Anne Jackson, Donald Wolfit — who appeared alongside O’Toole in several of his films — and strong holdings of British stage actors Henry Irving and Edmund Kean, whose life and works O’Toole studied and admired. The Ransom Center also holds a collection of T.E. Lawrence materials.