A rather remarkable fellow to be honest. I never appreciated his early work when I was young, what stuck with me was how much I enjoyed him in his later years.
His output like any aging legend varies in quality, but the 1980s saw two movies I revisit a lot. The Stunt Man is the perfect role for him, while he basically played himself in My Favorite Year. I always had a soft spot for the work he did in Creator. He carries the picture.
Gay Talese’s interview is well worth the read.
He threw his head back, finished his Scotch, then asked the stewardess for another. Peter O’Toole was sitting in an airplane that one hour before had left London, where he has long lived in exile, and was flying to Ireland, his birthplace. The plane was filled with businessmen and rosy-cheeked Irishwomen, and also a scattering of priests, one of whom held a cigarette in what seemed to be a long, thin pair of wire tweezers—presumably so he would not touch tobacco with fingers that would later hold the Sacrament.