Claire Bloom (1931-) b. London, England.
Born in the North London suburb of Finchley. Bloom learnt drama at the Central School of Speech Training and Dramatic Art before making her stage debut in 1946. She made her film debut in the role of Eric Portman’s daughter in The Blind Goddess (1948). Her first London appearance was as Alizon Eliot in John Gielgud‘s production of Christopher Fry’s The Lady’s Not for Burning, opposite Richard Burton. She received international acclaim when cast as a ballerina in her second film, Charlie Chaplin’s Limelight (1952). This success led to her being offered another major film role as Lady Anne in Laurence Olivier’s Richard III (1954).
Bloom’s success on the stage continued, but she was next cast opposite her friend Richard Burton in Tony Richardson‘s Look Back in Anger (1958). After meeting Rod Steiger in the play Rashomon, they became friends and later married in 1959. A standout role as a psychic in The Haunting (1963) followed before once again appearing opposite Richard Burton in The Spy Who Came in From the Cold (1965). In 1969 Bloom was divorced from Steiger, and remarried Hillard Elkins the same year. By 1979, her marriage to Elkins was over. In more recent years she appeared in fine supporting roles in Stephen Frears Sammy and Rosie Get Laid (1987), Woody Allen’s Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989) and Mighty Aphrodite (1995). In 1990, she married author Philip Roth, but the marriage only lasted five years. Throughout her successful career Bloom has played many of Shakespearian women, performing in the Old Vic, London’s West End and New York. On television she has appeared in Brideshead Revisited, The Ghost Writer, Shadowlands and The Camomile Lawn.