David Niven – Bio, Wife, Kids, Relationship With Barbara Niven

There are two David Nivens that the film industry has come to know and they are both related, one being the father and the other the son. This article focuses on the latter, the son commonly referred to as David Niven Jr. Like his father, he is a British film actor and producer. Niven has worked as an executive with major film production companies such as Paramount Pictures as well as Columbia Pictures. Find out more about David Niven in the paragraphs that follow.

David Niven Bio

David Niven was born David William Graham Niven Jr. on the 15th day of December 1942 in London. He was born to Primula Susan Rollo and David Niven the famous Hollywood actor who once played James Bond. Niven’s mother, Primula Rollo, also known as Primmie was the daughter to then known London lawyer, William Rollo.

His father, David Niven was also a renowned English novelist and memoirist. He starred in several notable films including A Matter of Life and Death where he played the role of Squadron Leader Peter Carter, Around the World in 80 Days where he played the role of Phileas Fogg and Pink Panther in which he portrayed the role of Sir Charles Lytton.

The senior Niven won an Academy Award in 1958 for his role in the film Separate Tables. Niven Jr. has a younger brother named James Graham Niven who is art auctioneer and a patron of the arts.

He lost his mother, Primula Rollo to a domestic accident at a very young age. This happened not long after the Niven family had moved to Hollywood in order to further the senior David Niven’s acting and producing career. Rollo went visiting a friend and was engaged in a game of ‘hide and seek’ when she went through a door thinking it led to a closet whereas it really led to a step down into a basement. Rollo fell and fractured her skull.


David Niven Jr.’s career dwarfs in comparison to his father’s. He seemed to stick more to his behind the scenes role as a film producer and never really made a big mark in his acting career.

His debut as a producer was with the 1976 film, The Eagle has Landed, after which went on to produce several other films and documentaries, many of which he executive produced. These include the 1979 film, Escape to Athena, Monsignor (1982), Better Late than Never (1983), Kidco (1984) and the documentary, That’s Dancing which he produced in 1985.

In 1984, Niven Jr. also executive produced the TV Movie, The Night They Saved Christmas, and the TV Movie documentaries Minnelli on Minnelli: Liza Remembers Vincente and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: 50 Years of Magic in 1987 and 1990 respectively.

In 1993, he was the executive producer of these films, Blue Flame, Psycho Cop Returns, and The Cool Surface. His other productions in the mid-90s include R.A.D.D.: Drive My Car and Girl with the Hungry Eyes.

Some of the films he had acting roles include Lisa (1989) in which he played the role of the flower shop patron, The Cool Surface (1993) where he portrayed the role of Peeping Tom and Rush Hour 3 in which he played as the British Foreigner.

David Niven seemed to have brought his career to a halt in 1995 with no official reason. He, however, showed up in 2009 to produce the short documentary To Oz! The Making of a Classic.

Read Also: A Complete List of James Bond Actors and Why Each Actor Quit

Relationship with Barbara Niven, Wife and Kids

david niven
David and Barbara Niven image source

David Niven Jr. was married to Barbara Niven (born Barbara Lee Buholz) between 1993 and 1998 bringing the span of their marriage to five years. Barbara Niven like David is an American actress and producer. She has a career that has spanned decades and has appeared in a plethora of films and TV shows. She is more active in the small screen appearing in several Lifetime and Hallmark films.

Barbara is best known for her roles in television series like Cedar Cove, One Life to Live and Pensacola: Wings of Gold. She continues to remain active in her acting career especially in Hallmark movies.

Barbara’s divorce from David Nivien Jr was her third divorce as she had earlier split up with her first two husbands including Ronald Garrison and David Alexander. Since their divorce, the two became very quiet about their love life.

Their short-lived marriage did produce a daughter named Jessica Niven. According to her IMDB profile, she appeared in 2017’s The Derelict: A Star Trek Fan Production.


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