Born Victor Andrew de Bier Everleigh McLaglen, he was a boy soldier during the Boer War.
Before becoming an actor, he worked as a carnival boxer. If anyone could stay in the ring with him for one round and not be knocked down, they won a box of cigars (once losing to Jack Johnson in six rounds).
He served in World War I as a captain with the Irish Fusiliers and as provost marshal of Baghdad. In the early '20s he broke into British films.
He soon moved to Hollywood, where he got lead and supporting roles; his basic screen persona was that of a large, brutish, but soft-
He remained a busy screen actor until the late '50s having appeared in 120 films.