In 1916, he enlisted for the remaining duration of World War I, joining the London Scottish Regiment as a private, serving alongside his future successful acting contemporaries Claude Rains, Herbert Marshall, and Ronald Colman. He later transferred with a commission as a lieutenant to the Liverpool Scottish, 2nd Battalion, where he served as an intelligence officer and eventually attained the rank of captain. During the war, Rathbone displayed a penchant for disguise (a skill which he coincidentally shared with what would become perhaps his most memorable character, Sherlock Holmes), when on one occasion, in order to have better visibility, Rathbone convinced his superiors to allow him to scout enemy positions during daylight hours instead of during the night, as was the usual practice in order to minimize the chance of detection by the enemy. Rathbone completed the mission successfully through his skillful use of camouflage, which allowed him to escape detection by the enemy. In September 1918, he was awarded the Military Cross.
Monday, June 13, 2011
Happy Birthday Basil Rathbone
Basil Rathbone! Best known as Sherlock Holmes from the 14 movies he made playing that character from 1939 to 1946, Rathbone was equally adept at being a hero, villian and/or a swashbuckler. His service during World War I demonstrated that he was a man of action off stage as well. From Wikipedia:Happy 119th Birthday to