Photo of Peter Ustinov Peter Ustinov

Born in London April 16, 1921, Peter Ustinov carved out a successful career in theater before turning his skills to the silver screen in the 1940s. He made an impression with his scorching portrayal of the peevish Emperor Nero in Quo Vadis (1951), but the actor is best known for his Oscar-winning supporting performances in Spartacus (1960) and Topkapi (1964).

Ustinov found success as a director with 1961's Romanoff and Juliet (a satire adapted from his stage play), Billy Budd (1962) and Hammersmith Is Out (1972). Meanwhile, he also distinguished himself on the small screen, earning Emmys for his sterling work on "Omnibus" and in the made-for-TV movies Barefoot in Athens (1966) and A Storm in Summer (1970).

Later in life, Ustinov took on the role of supersleuth Hercule Poirot for a series of Agatha Christie murder mysteries. The multifaceted star died of heart failure March 28, 2004.

Peter Ustinov in Spartacus


1960 PG-13

Stanley Kubrick directed this epic saga based on ancient events, chronicling the birth of a vagabond slave-army led by an ex-gladiator named Spartacus (Kirk Douglas) that threatens the sovereignty of all-mighty Rome. This film has everything, including a wonderfully funny (and Oscar-winning) performance from Peter Ustinov as the cowardly owner of a gladiator school. Laurence Olivier, Charles Laughton, Jean Simmons and Tony Curtis co-star.

  • Peter Ustinov in Death on the Nile Death on the Nile
  • Peter Ustinov in Quo Vadis Quo Vadis
  • Peter Ustinov in Logan's Run Logan's Run
  • Peter Ustinov in The Great Muppet Caper The Great Muppet Caper
  • Peter Ustinov in We're No Angels We're No Angels
  • Peter Ustinov in The Sundowners The Sundowners
  • Peter Ustinov in Thirteen at Dinner Thirteen at Dinner
  • Peter Ustinov in Salem Witch Trials Salem Witch Trials
  • Peter Ustinov in Agatha Christie's Evil Under the Sun Agatha Christie's Evil Under the Sun
  • Peter Ustinov in Topkapi Topkapi
  • Peter Ustinov in Blackbeard's Ghost Blackbeard's Ghost
  • Peter Ustinov in Robin Hood Robin Hood
  • Peter Ustinov in Dead Man's Folly Dead Man's Folly
  • Peter Ustinov in Murder in Three Acts Murder in Three Acts
  • Peter Ustinov in Luther Luther
  • Peter Ustinov in Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures
  • Peter Ustinov in The True Glory The True Glory
  • Peter Ustinov in Billy Budd Billy Budd
  • Peter Ustinov in Alice in Wonderland Alice in Wonderland
  • Peter Ustinov in Lola Montès Lola Montès
  • Peter Ustinov in Lorenzo's Oil Lorenzo's Oil
  • Peter Ustinov in Animal Farm Animal Farm
  • Peter Ustinov in Le Plaisir Le Plaisir
  • Peter Ustinov in Women of the World Women of the World
  • Peter Ustinov in Jesus of Nazareth Jesus of Nazareth
  • Peter Ustinov in Strumpet City Strumpet City
  • Peter Ustinov in Memed My Hawk Memed My Hawk
  • Peter Ustinov in Around the World in 80 Days Around the World in 80 Days
  • Peter Ustinov in The Old Curiosity Shop The Old Curiosity Shop
  • Peter Ustinov in Victoria and Albert Victoria and Albert