Public Places: My Life in the Theater, with Peter O’Toole and Beyond

ISBN: 0571211194
ISBN 13: 9780571211197
By: Sian Phillips

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About this book

Sian Phillips and Peter O'Toole were one of the theaters most fabulous couples--a marriage perhaps rivaled only by that of Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor in terms of glamour, power, and public fascination. In her exceptional memoir, Phillips reveals in thoughtful detail their tumultuous life together. She describes the mad and impulsive times with the infamous hellraiser alongside the tempestuous, insecure, and often lonely periods in their marriage. When OToole's career took off with "Lawrence of Arabia," Sian found life increasingly difficult in her parallel roles as wife, mother, and actress, and watched as her own career became progressively sidelined. Against all expectations, though, their union endured for twenty years. When it ended, incredibly, even to herself, Sian plunged straight into another marriage, to a much younger man. Ultimately she emerges alone--triumphant and unrepentant--and the story she recounts here ranks alongside the very best in show business.

Reader's Thoughts


I ordered this because it was mentioned on the Marzipan group list and after reading the first few pages on Amazon it sounded really interesting.

Jae Jaggart

Movie geek that I am, I saw Lawrence Of Arabia (the 1962 film) on the teev when I was still in primary school and walked around in a Lawrence daze for days. Gradually I caught up on various Peter O’Toole films and like a handful of brilliant actors that seemed to thrive in the sixties, he had a complete disregard for authority, a bloody-minded insistence on total personal freedom, and a self-destructive streak ten miles wide. Sian Phillips, a powerful actress in her own right, was married to him. This is her autobiography and a documentation of a fascinating period in filmmaking generally. It includes sharp observations not only of O’Toole, but of the major players in the theatre and cinema of the fifties, sixties and seventies. This was one very tough, very intelligent woman and I can only think that for all the bad times, there were an equal amount of fascinating and unique ones, many of them documented here with humor and wit.


loved this amazing book! My new mantra in life is "What would Sian do?"

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