Peter Sellers: An Unlikely Style Icon

Peter Sellers wearing Oliver Goldsmith "Vice Consul" spectacles and Barleycorn Tweed Jacket

In addition to his many attributes, and in contrast to the solemnity expressed at his coronation, King Charles III is known to possess a great sense of humour. He has famously shown a lifetime appreciation for "The Goon Show," a British radio comedy series that aired on the BBC Home Service from 1951 to 1960, featuring the extraordinary talents of Spike Milligan, Michael Bentine, Harry Secombe... and the inimitable Peter Sellers.


Prince Charles meets The Goons (1974)

In the 1950s, Sellers also began to make a name for himself in film, appearing in a series of successful British comedies such as "The Ladykillers" (1955) and "I'm All Right Jack" (1959), before gaining recognition in Hollywood with his performances in Stanley Kubrick's “Lolita” (1962) and "Dr. Strangelove” (1964).


Peter Sellers in "Dr Strangelove" (1964)

Worldwide acclaim arrived with his role as Inspector Clouseau in "The Pink Panther" series of films that were released between 1963 and 1978. Throughout his career, Sellers was known for his versatility as an actor, his gift for mimicry and improvisation, and his ability to create memorable and eccentric characters, leading to numerous awards for his work.


Peter Sellers in his most famous role as Inspector Clouseau

Sellers' career was marked by both successes and setbacks. He experienced personal and professional turmoil, including a series of failed marriages, health issues, and struggles with depression, before dying from a heart attack in 1980, aged 54. Nevertheless, his legacy as a comedic icon and one of the most talented actors of his generation continues to endure. 


Stylish photoshoot with model for magazine promotion (1964)

Peter Sellers may not be everyone’s immediate example of a style icon, but having starred in a Bond film and married a Bond girl, he certainly blips on our radar. In the 1960s and 70s, wearing Mr Fish clothes and Oliver Goldsmith spectacles, he surrounded himself with beautiful women, and equally beautiful motorcars. He was undoubtedly a man of taste, but his torturously chaotic lifestyle had a negative affect on his relationships with not only his wives, fiancees and girlfriends, but also his professional colleagues and, it is rumoured, on occasion, with a young Prince Charles.


Peter Sellers with his second wife, Britt Ekland

Sellers married his first wife, Anne Howe, in 1951. They had two children together, a son named Michael and a daughter named Sarah. However, the marriage ended in 1961. His second wife was Swedish model and actress Britt Ekland. They tied the knot in 1964, just 10 days after meeting for the first time, and their high-profile marriage attracted significant media attention, but ended in divorce in 1968.


Peter and Britt in Rome (1965)

Wife number three was British socialite and fashion model Miranda Quarry who, at the time worked at the Mr Fish boutique in Mayfair. Sellers was a customer of the store, having had clothes made for appearances both on and off screen. The couple married in 1970 and divorced in 1974, but remained friends until Seller's death in 1980. 


Miranda Quarry working in the Mr Fish boutique (1970)

Sellers' fourth and final wife was British actress Lynne Frederick, who he'd proposed to on the second time of meeting. They married in 1977 and stayed together until his death three years later. His other love interests had included Sophia Loren, Goldie Hawn, and Liza Minnelli - with whom he was briefly engaged whilst he was still married and she engaged to another. Rumours that he had an affair with Princess Margaret were fiercely denied by her.


Lynne Frederick admiring Sellers wearing the Oliver Goldsmith frames that were the precursor to their "Spillane" model

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