"British legend Peter O'Toole, 74, was nominated last week for an Oscar for best actor for his endearing performance in "Venus," as an aging thespian who finds himself smitten with the free-spirited grandniece of his good friend.
Long before "Venus," O'Toole gave one of his most accomplished performances, for which he received his second Oscar nomination, in the 1964 drama "Becket."
Because of legal reasons and restoration concerns, "Becket" has been out of the public eye for years.
MPI is reissuing "Becket" in 35 cities with a DVD release to follow in the early summer. The classic arrives Friday at the Nuart Theatre in West Los Angeles.
"It's a lost epic," says Greg Newman, MPI's vice president of acquisitions and development. "It deserves to be seen."
Based on the play by Jean Anouilh, the powerful drama casts O'Toole as the carousing King Henry II of England, who becomes embroiled in a power struggle with his good friend Thomas à Becket (fellow Oscar nominee Richard Burton) after he names Becket the archbishop of Canterbury.
"Becket" was nominated for 12 Academy Awards, including for director Peter Glenville and supporting actor John Gielgud. It lost the best picture Oscar to "My Fair Lady," but Edward Anhalt's screenplay won in the adaptation category," reports the Los Angeles Times.