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Rio's Attic: Celebrating the Life and Times of a Dearly Missed River Phoenix
American EnglishEn Français

Chambers Concise Biographical Dictionary

Edited by Una McGovern and Gary Dexter
First published in 2003


ISBN 0-550-10062-8 (Hardback, 1055 Pages)

This 1000+ page book is presented as an update to the previously published full reference work entitled Chambers Biographical Dictionary. This abridged version still contains over ten thousand entries and is a valuable source of information for those wishing to undertake research regarding either modern day individuals or prominent figures from history who have influenced the world in which we live.

Participants from most areas of life are covered including those involved with music, television, the arts, the sciences, politics and philosophy. Despite spanning many, many centuries, rather than just a few decades, the book still makes time to remember one particular actor from the twentieth century.

Phoenix, River  1970-93  •US actor• Born in Madras, Oregon, to parents who were members of the Children of God sect, he was brought up in various locations in South America with his siblings Rain, Summer and Joaquin (aka Leaf), also actors. His films include Mosquito Coast (1986), Running on Empty (1988), My Own Private Idaho (1991) and Silent Tongue (1993). He died of drug-induced heart failure outside a Hollywood nightclub at the age of 23.

As previously mentioned, and unlike most of the other reference works featured in Phoenix Bookshelf, this book does not concentrate solely on the film industry and instead the editors give equal and fair coverage to all of their subjects. River's acting contemporaries who also receive entries in this reference book share the same layout and much the same length, but although writers such as Paul Theroux are listed, directors such as Rob Reiner, Sidney Lumet and Gus Van Sant are not present.

Ford, Harrison  1942-  •US film actor• Born in Chicago, he appeared in summer stock theatre before making small appearances in films and television. He achieved fame in Star Wars (1977) and its two sequels. Cast as resourceful, swashbuckling heroes, he found great popularity as an archeologist adventurer in Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) and its sequels Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989). Other successes include Witness (1985, Academy Award nomination), The Mosquito Coast (1986), Presumed Innocent (1990), The Fugitive (1993) and What Lies Beneath (2000).

Mirren, Helen, originally Helen Lydia Mironoff  1945-  •English actress• Born in Hammersmith, West London, she joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1967, where her performances included Ophelia in Hamlet (1970), the title role of Miss Julie (1971) and Lady Macbeth in Macbeth (1974-75). She made her film debut in Herostratus (1967) and won acclaim for her roles in The Long Good Friday (1979) and Cal (1984). Her subsequent pictures include The Mosquito Coast (1986), The Cook The Thief His Wife & Her Lover (1989), The Madness of King George (1994) and Some Mother's Son (1996). On television, she is best known as policewoman Jane Tennison in Prime Suspect (1991-96). She has continued to work widely on stage.

Reeves, Keanu  1964-  •US actor• He was born in Beirut, Lebanon, and studied at the Toronto High School for Performing Arts. He began his career on stage in Canada and moved to television and cinema in the mid-1980s, appearing in a diverse range of films from comedies such as Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure (1988) to action thrillers such as Speed (1994). Other notable films include Dangerous Liaisons (1988), Point Break (1991), My Own Private Idaho (1991), The Matrix (1998) and Sweet November (2001).


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