Being on Facebook is nice and often fun and a useful, slightly lazy way of keeping up with friends…seeing new pictures etc. I suspect that this is what Mark Zuckerberg had in mind when he created Facebook and did not give much thought to its potential sinister aspects.
Fans are in touch and that is nice, but more often than not, the question comes up, is, what was it like to work with this one and that one. So here goes, a short list of favourites and what it was like to work with them. I will say that I never worked with anyone who I considered a seriously nasty human being, only a few who took themselves too seriously and were boring. Won’t talk about them.
Roger Moore was one of the most genuinely charming and delightful people to work with.
He was modest and funny, always considerate of cast and crew and took pleasure in playing jokes on people. He and his producing partner Robert Baker were always dreaming up pranks. I cant remember any off hand, but they served to keep an exhausted crew (long hours) happy and good natured. That was the difference I mainly found between the TV crews in the UK and the US (Hollywood). The UK crews felt equal to the actors and the execs and we all behaved as equals, joked, laughed together etc. The Hollywood crews were all business and seemed wary, almost a little afraid, of being easy with the actors, no joking or friendly banter and my efforts generally fell on stony ground. Many of the actors took themselves very seriously on the whole…to them this was a business and they were focused on their image, their next job/interview PR gig, etc……. all rather dull.
However I was lucky to work with a few of the more human ones…..Bill Bixby on The Incredible Hulk and The Magician. Lovely man, died too young, intelligent, easy to get along with and told me that if you get an ongoing role at least three successful series you will be set financially for life. He did exactly that:
Three shows: The Courtship of Eddie’s Father, The Incredible Hulk and The Magician. Last time we worked together he had me stand in front of the clock face on the Clock Tower at a famous California Inn where we filmed, to mysteriously beckon someone. I was terrified, having no heads for heights and with nothing between me and certain death…but I did it for him, wouldn’t have done it for many people!
Next up in this little trip down memory lane is Leonard Nimoy…did a very romantic episode of Mission Impossible with him….paddled about in a boat on a lake in Hidden Valley in California and talked about acting. Leonard was a very gifted actor who after having played Mr Spock in Star Trek forever, had a hard time getting away from the pointy ears etc. I was newly arrived in LA at the time and he was very kind and helpful to me and helped me find my way around the Hollywood way of “doing things” and amazingly remembered me, when I bumped into him again in London years later!
I cant leave this, without mentioning the amazing, wonderful Mr McGoohan…Patrick …how I loved working with him, the thrill, the energy…it was like riding an exhilarating roller coaster…here is a link to a bit of one of the episodes we did together on Danger Man aka Secret Agent (USA title).
Next time O”TOOLE!