Sir Roger George Moore, KBE is an English actor and film producer, perhaps best known for portraying British secret agent James Bond in seven films from 1973 to 1985. He also portrayed Simon Templar in the long-running British television series The Saint.
Moore was born in Stockwell, London. The only child of George Moore, a policeman, and Lillian "Lily", a housewife, he attended Battersea Grammar School, but was evacuated to Holsworthy, Devon during World War II and was then educated at Dr Challoner's Grammar School. He then attended the College of the Venerable Bede at the University of Durham but never graduated. At 18 years old, shortly after the end of the war, Moore was conscripted for National Service. He was commissioned as an officer and eventually became a Captain. Moore served in the Royal Army Service Corps, commanding a small depot in West Germany. He later transferred to the entertainment branch, and immediately prior to his National Service, there was a brief stint at RADA, during which his fees were paid by film director Brian Desmond Hurst, who also used Moore as an extra in his film Trottie True. Moore was a classmate at RADA with his future Bond colleague Lois Maxwell, the original Miss Moneypenny. The young Moore first appeared in films during the mid to late-1940s, as an extra. Moore's film idol as a child was Stewart Granger. As a 17-year-old, Moore appeared as an extra in the film Caesar and Cleopatra, finally meeting his idol on the set. Moore later worked with Granger in The Wild Geese.
In the early 1950s, Moore worked as a male model, appearing in print advertisements for knitwear, and a wide range of other products such as toothpaste an element that many critics have used as typifying his lightweight credentials as an actor. His earliest known television appearance was on 27 May 1950, in Drawing Room Detective, a one-off programme. Presented by veteran BBC announcer Leslie Mitchell, it invited viewers at home to spot clues to a crime during a playlet, whose actors also included Alec Ross and Michael Ripper. Barring interviews, Moore has not worked for BBC television since.
Although Moore won a contract with MGM in the 1950s, the films which followed were not a success and, in his own words, "At MGM, RGM was NBG ." His starring role in The Miracle, a version of the play Das Mirakel for Warner Bros., had been turned down by Dirk Bogarde.