Sir John Mills CBE (22 February 1908 – 23 April 2005), born Lewis Ernest Watts Mills, was an English actor who made more than 120 films in a career spanning seven decades.
Mills was born at the Watts Naval School in North Elmham, Norfolk, England, and grew up in Belton, where his father was the headmaster of the village school and in Felixstowe, Suffolk. He was educated at Norwich High School for Boys, where it is said that his initials can still be seen carved into the brickwork on the side of the building in Upper St. Giles Street. He made his acting debut on the stage of the Sir John Leman School in Beccles in a performance of A Midsummer Night's Dream when he played the part of Puck. Upon leaving school he worked as a clerk at a corn merchants in Ipswich.
Mills took an early interest in acting, making his professional debut at the London Hippodrome in The Five O'Clock Girl in 1929. He also starred in the Noël Coward revue Words and Music. He made his film debut in The Midshipmaid (1932), and appeared as Colley in the 1939 film version of Goodbye, Mr Chips, opposite Robert Donat.