After the Magic Lantern Festival screening of THE LION IN WINTER on Sunday in Ketchum Idaho, a friend asked me how it felt to watch myself in movie, made so long ago and looking somewhat younger! I replied ” it’s interesting, but not easy”. When I appeared as Vivien Leigh in the one woman play VIVIEN LEIGH, A PORTRAIT, in Atlanta some years ago, Vivien
speaks about how hard it is to watch yourself, as you were so many years ago and for her over and over again, as she was constantly asked to appear at numerous screenings of GONE WITH THE WIND. I was delighted that THE LION IN WINTER holds up so well and appears as vital and fresh as did went it was made. It really was an extraordinary film, to be in and with such an amazing group of people, on both sides of the camera and I am proud to have participated. We had an excellent turn out for the film and the audience really liked it, staying for the Q& A afterwards….a good time was had by all. As to watching yourself, young, when you are somewhat older, you just have to ‘man up’ and get on with it. There isn’t much to be gained by looking back and mourning what is definitely over, just look forward and get on with the new…..that’s my philosophy for what it’s worth.
I think actors (and I include the women in that now generic term for us all) have to accept that you cannot look the same on the screen as you did in your youth. It’s better to go with the face you were born with…so I made a promise to myself….”no needles nor knives near my face”…what’s the point? The probability is that your face wont move and how can you express yourself with an immobile face. Worse yet you end up looking like someone else. Of course I look in the mirror occasionally and change my mind…but I think I will stick with my promise and stay away from face changes. On the whole people are more interesting with the face they were born with.
While I was in Ketchum I spent time with friend Gay Odmark, a talented artist and very interesting person, I visited her recent photography exhibition and loved it – do look at her site and her terrific work.