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City's Sweet memories of movie actor
A Canterbury Tale star mourned
The Canterbury Times - Thursday, July 28, 2011
By: Nerissa Blower
John Sweet, the star of classic wartime movie, A Canterbury Tale, has died. He was 95.
American-born Mr Sweet was a soldier serving in the UK during the Second World War when he was plucked from obscurity to play the role of Sergeant Bob Johnson in the 1944 film, shot around Canterbury and Fordwich.
The iconic film was loosely based on Geoffrey Chaucer's tale of religious pilgrimage but set against a wartime backdrop.
After the success of the film, Mr Sweet returned to America in an attempt to raise his profile as an actor, but eventually returned to his original profession of teaching.
But he returned to Fordwich with the original cast for a reunion in October 2000.
He said at the time: "The few months I spent making the film were the most profound and influential of my life."
Eddie McMillan, from the media department at Canterbury Christ Church University, had interviewed him.
He said: "What struck me most about him was his humility, honesty and gentle nature.
"He was a wonderful interviewee - lucid, candid and perceptive.
"He talked enthusiastically about Canterbury, the production of A Canterbury Tale, celebrity culture and his life after the film. He was a lovely man and he will be sadly missed."
Mr Smith leaves a widow, Barbara. He died on July 5 after a long illness.
Other P&P obituaries