Rupert’s just wild about Oscar

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Rupert’s just wild about Oscar

‘To the End of the World’ is a delicious new memoir from actor Rupert Everett

Michele Magwood

In the photographic section of Rupert Everett’s absorbing memoir To the End of the World is the famous picture of the actor and Colin Firth in 1984 film Another Country. They were both at the beginning of their acting careers, long before they stole away My Best Friend’s Wedding and Pride and Prejudice respectively; long before the awards and the paparazzi, the klieg lights and deranged fans. In Another Country they portray public-school boys based on the characters of notorious spies Guy Burgess and Donald Maclean. Everett is bewitchingly beautiful, louche and attenuated, suffering the homophobia of his schoolmates. The Marxist in Firth’s character makes him an outcast too.

The photograph underneath it in the memoir was taken 35 years later. Everett is playing the writer Oscar Wilde, dying in exile, cast out by his homosexuality. Firth is his good friend Reggie. The film is 2018’s The Happy Prince, written and directed by Everett, which tells the lamentable story of Wilde’s last years. It says a lot that Firth agreed to act in the film for nothing, as Everett’s financing had dried up.

To The End Of The World (Little, Brown) is Everett’s third memoir, after the blisteringly funny Red Carpets and Other Banana Skins and Vanished Years. Subtitled Travels With Oscar Wilde, it is a story of obsession: Everett’s lifelong preoccupation with the flamboyant playwright, and Wilde’s own lethal obsession with his young lover, Lord Alfred “Bosie” Douglas...

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