As an actor Dirk Bogarde was a Rank contract artist and matinee idol who became a giant of the intellectual cinema, working with directors such as Joseph Losey (The Servant, Accident), Lucino Visconti (The Damned, Death in Venice) and Alain Resnais (Providence). left England in the 1960s to live on the Continent, where he carved a second career for himself as a bestselling autobiographer beginning with A Postillion Struck by Lightning (1977) and as a successful novelist. In all he had 15 books to his credit, including A Particular Friendship (1989), which showed him as a copious and brilliant writer of letters. made available his personal archive to John Coldstream, former Literary Editor of the Daily Telegraph, who knew him well in his last years and edited his final book, For the Time Being (1998). Coldstream has also made many discoveries all over the world following diligent research.