Home » Artist Facts » Yul Brynner Facts

Yul Brynner Facts

Yul Brynner: A Legendary Performer

Yul Brynner was a multi-talented performer who achieved fame as an actor, singer, and director. He was born on July 11, 1920, in Vladivostok, Russia, as Yuli Borisovich Bryner but later changed his name to Yul Brynner. He had a career that spanned over four decades and he was known for his iconic role as the King of Siam in the musical ‘The King and I.’

Early Life and Education

Yul Brynner was brought up in China and France. His father was a mining engineer and his mother was a pianist. Brynner’s maternal grandfather was the famous composer, Julius Benedict, who was best known for his opera, ‘The Lily of Killarney.’ Brynner attended school in China and later moved to Paris where he studied acting under Michel Saint-Denis.

Age, Relationships, and Children

Yul Brynner was married four times and had five children. His first marriage was to actress Virginia Gilmore in 1944. They had a son, Yul Brynner Jr., who later became a successful photographer. Their marriage lasted for two years. Brynner then married stage actress Doris Kleiner in 1946. The couple had a daughter, Lark Brynner, in 1954 before their marriage ended in divorce.

In 1960, Brynner married his third wife, Jacqueline Thion de la Chaume, a French socialite, and they had a daughter, Victoria. The couple divorced in 1981. In 1983, Brynner married his fourth wife, Kathy Lee, who was his personal assistant. They had a daughter named Mia, and the couple stayed together until his death in 1985.

Height and Physical Appearance

Yul Brynner was known for his charismatic and imposing screen presence. He stood at an impressive height of 5’8″ (172 cm) and had a muscular build. The actor was bald, but he used his distinctive head shape to his advantage, often adding to his mystique and appeal.

Career and Achievements

Yul Brynner’s career spanned over 40 years, and he appeared in over 75 films, television series, and stage plays. He began his acting career in Europe in the 1940s, performing in French and German films. Brynner’s breakthrough came when he landed the role of the King of Siam in the 1951 musical ‘The King and I.’ He reprised this role in the film adaptation in 1956, for which he won an Academy Award for Best Actor.

Brynner was also known for his work in westerns, including ‘The Magnificent Seven’ (1960) and ‘Westworld’ (1973). He was also a respected theater director, and he received a Tony Award for his directing work in the Broadway production of ‘The Moon in Yellow River’ in 1959. In 1973, he won a Grammy Award for the recording of ‘The King and I.’

Top Songs

Although he was primarily known as an actor, Yul Brynner was also a gifted singer. He recorded several albums over the years, including ‘The Gypsy and I’ (1958) and ‘East of Suez’ (1960). Brynner’s signature song, ‘Shall We Dance?’ from ‘The King and I,’ remains a beloved classic to this day.

Net Worth

At the time of his death in 1985, Yul Brynner’s net worth was estimated to be around $10 million.


Yul Brynner’s legacy continues to be felt today. His iconic portrayal of the King of Siam in ‘The King and I’ has been preserved for all time, and his work in film and theater remains a towering achievement. He was a classy, sophisticated performer, and a true original who will never be forgotten.

In conclusion, Yul Brynner was a remarkable performer whose talent and charisma made him a beloved figure in the entertainment industry. From his early years in Europe to his memorable work in Hollywood, Brynner’s career was marked by his incredible range and versatility. Although he has been gone for over three decades, his influence continues to be felt, and his work continues to inspire new generations of aspiring performers.

About The Author

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top