Warren Mitchell

Actor

Best known for his portrayal of grumpy, racist bigot Alf Garnett in Til Death do Us Part, Warren, then Warren Misell,  was born in Stoke Newington in 1926 to a Russian Jewish family. He attended Southgate County High in Fox Lane from 1937 to 1943 before studying chemistry at Oxford and meeting Richard Burton, who encouraged him in his acting ambitions. His premature baldness meant that Mitchell could play a wide age range of characters – he first played Alf Garnett in 1965 in a one off play aged 39.  The BFI website Screen Online notes that Mitchell and writer Johnny Speight’s intention was to ridicule Garnett – left leaning Mitchell’s political views could not be more different to Alf’s. However, the quality of writing meant that Garnett became a well formed character, and was seen by some as a working class hero, something which caused Mitchell and Speight some soul searching. 

Sources 

Screen Online (BFI)

http://www.southgatecountyschool.co.uk/pupils.php

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alf_Garnett

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