Long John Silver

From Academic Kids

Long John Silver is a fictional character in the novel Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson, but the name was taken from an otherwise unknown historical criminal.

In Treasure Island, Long John Silver is a pirate and was the ship's quartermaster under the notorious Captain John Flint. Silver was said to have been the only man whom Flint ever feared. Like many of Stevenson's characters, there is more than a modicum of duality in the character; ostensibly Silver is a hard-working and likeable seaman, and it is only as the plot unfurls that his villainous nature is gradually revealed. In the novel he is the only one of the former crew of Captain Flint, that had joined in the search for treasure, who could escape and that even with some amount of the treasure.

Modern portrayals

Actors who have portrayed Long John Silver in the various motion picture adaptations of Treasure Island include Wallace Beery, Orson Welles, Charlton Heston, Robert Newton, Tim Curry, Jack Palance and Brian Blessed and British actor Ivor Dean in an televised version of the novel.

Ivor Dean played the character in an acclaimed European filmisation for television in 1966. After the end of that 4-part mini-series he intended to revise the role in another series with more adventures of Silver. He began writing an exposee with director Robert S. Baker, but his sudden death in 1974 stopped all further plannings. In 1985 this script was used as foundation for a 10-part TV-series called "Return to Treasure Island".

Trivia

The fast food restaurant chain Long John Silver's was named after this character, as was porn actor Long Dong Silver.


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