I feel so sorry for those poor men sitting up there all day. They must be so cold.
Quoted in Alec Guinness, Journals, February 1988. [Guinness: " John's grasp of public events was always rather tenuous. His heart however, was in the right place. [This remark] - he was pointing to the barrage balloons tethered over London."]
I'm sure there isn't an after-life. If there were, Ivor Novello would have got a message to us.
I couldn't find my feet very well and after a rehearsal, John said to me one day "Would you care to run over your scene with me?" so I thought to myself "Not much". So rather grudgingly I said "Oh yes, all right". So we ran through it, just the two of us in the theatre with the director and Johnny said "Well you know Ralph, I think that when you come on, you might do this or you might do that, you might do this" - he gave me, as he usually does, about three or four suggestions. I thought to myself My god, so I might, I might do one of those. And he talked about Sycorax my mother...he gave me about two hundred ideas as he usually does, twenty-five of which I eagerly seized on, and when I went away I thought "This chap, you know, I don't like him very much but by God he knows something about this here play." He helped me so much that I looked at him afterwards in quite a different way. And then out of that we formed a friendship."
Quoted in Ronald Hayman, 'Gielgud', Heinemann 1971, p. 67