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Polly Shearman on Fawlty Towers
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Full Name at Birth
Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
Writer, Actress, Comedian And Psychotherapist
Constance "Connie" Booth (born 31 January 1944) is an American-born writer, actress, comedian and psychotherapist based in England, best known for appearances on British television and particularly for her portrayal of Polly Sherman in the popular 1970s television show Fawlty Towers, which she co-wrote with her then-husband John Cleese.
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Constance "Connie" Booth (born 31 January 1944) is an American-born English writer, actress, comedian and psychotherapist, best known for appearances on British television and particularly for her portrayal of Polly Sherman in the popular 1970s television show Fawlty Towers, which she co-wrote with her then-husband John Cleese.
Booth's father was a Wall Street stock broker and her mother a housewife. Originally from rural Indiana, they moved to New Rochelle, New York, where, after performing in high school productions, Booth went on to study drama in New York City, where she worked as a waitress. She married John Cleese on February 20, 1968.
Booth secured parts in episodes of Monty Python's Flying Circus and in the Python film And Now for Something Completely Different. She also appeared in Monty Python and the Holy Grail as a woman accused of being a witch; in How to Irritate People, a pre-Monty Python film starring Cleese and other future Monty Python members; and in The Strange Case of the End of Civilization as We Know It (Cleese's Sherlock Holmes spoof, as Mrs. Hudson).
Booth and Cleese went on to write and co-star in Fawlty Towers (1975,1979). She also appeared in a short film titled Romance with a Double Bass, adapted by Cleese from a short story by Anton Chekhov.
In 1971, Booth and Cleese had a daughter, Cynthia, who appeared alongside her father in the films A Fish Called Wanda and Fierce Creatures. Booth and Cleese divorced in 1978, but have remained close friends.
Booth played various roles on British television, including Sophie in Dickens of London, Mrs Errol in a BBC adaptation of Little Lord Fauntleroy, and Miss March in a dramatisation of Edith Wharton's The Buccaneers. She also starred in the lead role of a drama called 'The Story of Ruth' (1981), in which she played the role of the schizophrenic daughter of an abusive father, for which she received critical acclaim.
Booth ended her acting career in 1995. She works as a psychotherapist in London, a registrant of the British Psychoanalytic Council. For 30 years Booth had declined to talk about Fawlty Towers until she agreed to participate in a documentary about the series for the digital channel Gold in 2009.
Booth married John Lahr, author and senior drama critic of The New Yorker, in 2000. They live in north London.
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TV commercial for Schweppes tonic water (1977)
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