Carry On actor dies

Comedy actor Jack Douglas, best known for his appearances in the Carry On film series, died today of pneumonia.

Douglas, 81, had been ill for a few years but died at 7.15am today on the Isle of Wight, in Hants, where he lived with his partner Vivien Howell.

He made his name as the nervous and fidgety Carry On character Alf Ippititimus with his famous "Phwaay!" catchphrase.

In later life, he was a regular on the theatre and pantomime circuit.

His agent and friend Phil Dale said: "Jack was one of those lovely people who came from the world of comedy and understood comedy timing in the sense of the old British tradition of farce, which is seldom done these days."

Douglas was born in Newcastle upon Tyne and worked in the theatre before appearing in the last seven Carry On films of the original series, including Carry On Matron, Carry On Abroad, Carry On Girls, Carry On Dick, Carry On Behind, Carry On England and Carry On Emmanuelle.

His role grew from a cameo with one line of dialogue in Matron to a leading role in Emmanuelle.

He also appeared in the Carry On Christmas specials in 1972 and 1973, the Carry On Laughing television series and in the revival film Carry On Columbus in 1992.

He guest-starred in an episode of The Goodies and became a stooge for the likes of Bruce Forsyth, Arthur Haynes and Benny Hill.

His character Alf Ippititimus was also a regular with Des O'Connor in variety shows and pantomimes during the 1960s.



Douglas came from a theatrical family and initially followed in his father's footsteps as a producer, putting on his first show at the age of 15.

He showed no interest in performing until he stood in for one of his actors who was ill.

He enjoyed it so much, he decided to perform instead of produce.

He loved jazz music, enjoyed cooking in his spare time and wrote a book, The Whey-Hey Guide to Better Cookery.

He also wrote a musical, What A Performance, about the life of comedian Sid Field, and his own autobiography, A Twitch in Time.



Writer and broadcaster Richard Hope-Hawkins said: "Jack was a lovely friend and a very clever comedian.

"He was one of the pioneers of early television. It's lovely everyone recognises Jack for his Carry On films but he was also a true professional and entertainer."

He and Douglas organised a celebrity benefit gala which raised more than £75,000 for actor Terry-Thomas who had been reduced to poverty through Parkinsons Disease.

More than 120 artists took part in the Terry-Thomas Gala at London's Theatre Royal in 1989 including Phil Collins, Eartha Kitt, Russ Conway, Sir Harry Secombe, Roy Castle, Ronnie Corbett, Susan George, Michael Winner and Barbara Windsor to name but a few.

He added: "In 16 weeks Jack and I organised the largest celebrity benefit gala that London has ever seen with over 120 artists.

"The audience was full of celebrities too. If there's any achievement that Jack did apart from his comic skills, it was this wonderful gala benefit for Terry-Thomas."

Arts and Entertainment
Eddie Redmayne with his Screen Actors Guild award for Best Actor

film
Arts and Entertainment
Rowan Atkinson is bringing out Mr Bean for Comic Relief

TV
Arts and Entertainment

Theatre

Arts and Entertainment
V&A museum in London

Art Piece taken off website amid 'severe security alert'

Arts and Entertainment
Over their 20 years, the band has built a community of dedicated followers the world over
music
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
Reese Witherspoon starring in 'Wild'

It's hard not to warm to Reese Witherspoon's heroismfilm
Arts and Entertainment
Word up: Robbie Coltrane as dictionary guru Doctor Johnson in the classic sitcom Blackadder the Third
books

Arts and Entertainment
The Oscar nominations are due to be announced today

Oscars 2015
Arts and Entertainment
Hacked off: Maisie Williams in ‘Cyberbully’

Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challenge

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Eddie Redmayne in The Theory of Everything and Benedict Cumberbatch in The Imitation Game are both nominated at the Bafta Film Awards
Arts and Entertainment

Academy criticised after no non-white actors nominated

Arts and Entertainment
Damian Lewis shooting a scene as Henry VIII in Wolf Hall
TV

Arts and Entertainment
A history of violence: ‘Angry, White and Proud’ looked at the rise of far-right groups

tv

An expose of hooliganism masquerading as an ideological battle

Arts and Entertainment

art

Lee Hadwin can't draw when he's awake, but by night he's an artist

Arts and Entertainment

TV

Arts and Entertainment
Michael Keaton in the 1998 Beetlejuice original

film

Arts and Entertainment

TV

Arts and Entertainment
Olivia Colman and David Tennant star in 'Broadchurch'

TV

Arts and Entertainment
Michael Kitchen plays Christopher Foyle in ITV's 'Foyle's War'

TV
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Downton Abbey star Joanne Froggatt will be starring in Dominic Savage's new BBC drama The Secrets

Arts and Entertainment
Vividly drawn: Timothy Spall in Mike Leigh’s ‘Mr Turner’
film
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

    Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

    One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
    The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

    The enemy within

    People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
    'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

    'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

    Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
    Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

    Autumn/winter menswear 2015

    The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
    'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

    'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

    Army general planning to come out
    Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

    What the six wise men told Tony Blair

    Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
    25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

    25 years of The Independent on Sunday

    The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
    Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
    Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

    Smash hit go under the hammer

    It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
    Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

    The geeks who rocked the world

    A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
    Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

    Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

    Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
    America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

    America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

    These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
    A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

    A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

    A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
    Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

    Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

    A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
    Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

    Growing mussels

    Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project