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James Neville Mason was a British actor, who was known for starring as Captain Nemo in the 1954 Disney film 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.

Mason joined the Old Vic theatre in London during the 1930s, where appeared in productions of The Cherry Orchard, Henry VIII, Measure for Measure, The Importance of Being Earnest, The Tempest, Twelfth Night, and MacBeth.

He achieved considerable success in British cinema before becoming a star in Hollywood with films, like The Seventh Veil, The Wicked Lady, and Odd Man Out. By the 1950s, Mason had appeared in The Desert Fox, A Star Is Born, Lolita, North by Northwest, Journey to the Centre of the Earth, Bigger Than Life, The Desert Rats, The Man Between, Face to Face, Island in the Sun, Julius Caesar, Georgy Girl, A Deadly Affair, Heaven Can Wait, The Boys from Brazil, The Verdict, The Fall of the Roman Empire, Voyage of the Damned, Jesus of Nazareth, The Water Babies, Salem's Lot, Child's Play, and The Shooting Party.

Mason was nominated for three Academy Awards, three Golden Globes and two BAFTA Awards throughout his career. Following his death in 1984, his ashes were interred near the tomb of his close friend, fellow English actor Sir Charlie Chaplin.


  • Mason was once considered for the role of George Banks in Mary Poppins, along with George Sanders, Terry-Thomas, Richard Harris, Patrick McGoohan, David Niven, Sebastian Cabot, Roddy McDowall, Peter Finch, Christopher Plummer, John Mills, Danny Kaye, Richard Haydn, Yul Brynner, Sean Connery, Trevor Howard, Robert Taylor, Fred Astaire, Donald Pleasence, Albert Finney, Peter Ustinov, Ray Milland, Leo McKern, Peter Barkworth, and Donald Sutherland.
  • Mason was also considered for the role of Barnaby in Babes in Toyland, along with several actors before Ray Bolger was chosen.
  • Despite playing many villains in films, he was actually a very kind gentlemen, as well as a father.
  • Mason suffered a heart attack in 1959, but made a recovery, in 1984, he suffered another heart attack which caused his death.