Alexander Korda

The Private Life of Henry VIII

The Private Life of Henry VIII

Charles Laughton gulps beer and chomps on mutton, in his first of many iconic screen roles, as King Henry VIII, the ultimate anti-husband. Alexander Korda’s first major international success is a raucous, entertaining, even poignant peek into the boudoirs of the infamous king and his six wives.

Film Info

  • United Kingdom
  • 1933
  • 96 minutes
  • Black & White
  • 1.33:1
  • English

Available In

Collector's Set

Eclipse Series 16: Alexander Korda’s Private Lives

Alexander Korda’s Private Lives

DVD Box Set

4 Discs


Out Of Print
The Private Life of Henry VIII
Charles Laughton
Henry VIII
Robert Donat
Thomas Culpeper
Franklin Dyall
Thomas Cromwell
Merle Oberon
Anne Boleyn, the second wife
Wendy Barrie
Jane Seymour, the third wife
Elsa Lanchester
Anne of Cleves, the fourth wife
Binnie Barnes
Katherine Howard, the fifth wife
Everley Gregg
Katherine Parr, the sixth wife
Lady Tree
The King’s Nurse
Alexander Korda
Story and dialogue
Lajos Biro
Story and dialogue
Arthur Wimperis
Arthur Wimperis
Georges Périnal
Stephen Harrison
Settings designed by
Vincent Korda
Kurt Schroeder
John Armstrong


Charles Laughton: Size Matters


Charles Laughton: Size Matters

“Let me have men about me that are fat.” —Julius Caesar, act 1, scene 2 Just as Raymond Chandler’s Philip Marlowe admired small, brave men who stick to their principles, I like—in the movies at least—heavyset, flamboyant types who walk a

By Graham Fuller


The Kordas

Producer, Director, Production Designer

The Kordas
The Kordas

During sound cinema’s first full decade, the Hungarian-born Korda brothers—Alexander, Zoltán, and Vincent—built a British empire. The mastermind behind their legendary company, London Films Productions, was producer, director, writer, and eventual mega-mogul Alex; born Sándor Kellner, he became interested in the art of silent cinema as a teenager in his home country, writing criticism and even founding a movie magazine before finding success making his own films all over Europe. In the late twenties, following a short stint in Hollywood, Alex was sent to England to head up Paramount’s British Production Unit; in 1932, he established London Films and brought aboard his younger siblings, Zoltán as a writer/director and Vincent as a production designer. Their first big hit was The Private Life of Henry VIII (1933), which earned Charles Laughton an Oscar and the Kordas international attention. The rest of the thirties held highs (The Rise of Catherine the Great, Elephant Boy) and lows (The Private Life of Don Juan) for the company. But its films—often about historical personalities (Rembrandt) or the exploits of the British Empire abroad (Sanders of the River, The Four Feathers)—remain exemplars of a grand period of British cinema. In the forties, the Kordas only grew in stature—due not only to such immensely popular titles as The Thief of Bagdad and That Hamilton Woman but also to the selection of Alexander, the first film director to be so honored, for knighthood.