Been a while since I put pen to paper ……just got back from good trips to Ventura, California (friends, sailing, meeting interesting new people) and Sun Valley…snow, old friend and the Film Festival. And now waiting for the final cut of About Andy (new short). Yesterday we did pick up shots for the film. The equipment used now is just amazing, where it took a crew of many, just for the camera , now two people can do almost everything!
I was lucky enough to enter adult life and my career during a truly Golden age…the sixties. I was living in an amazing City, working with and meeting some of the wonderful talents of that age….so this a bit about my contemporaries. One of the delights of YouTube and Facebook to some extent has brought all this about. So…..here are a few thoughts of some of the exceptional people met and people worked with.
This came about by watching Dudley Moore at his best playing the piano and clowning…his two great talents. He lit upon the scene with three other talented men, Alan Bennett….now revered writer, Jonathan Miller, Director and the late great Peter Cook, regarded as one of our finest comedians. I met them all after a performance of their ‘entry onto the scene’ signature evening stage performance Beyond the Fringe an evening of satire and brilliant silliness poking fun at life, particularly political …in line with the current Saturday Night Live, Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Kimmel. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SIFzbLE6bHU. We all take life far too seriously now and humour brings us back to earth.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCtzkaL2t_Y Met the Beatles on the set oh “A Hard Day’s Night’ with then best b/f David Hemmings ….they recognized him not me, which put my nose somewhat out of joint, as I was a bigger name than he was at the time…loved them they were fun and funny, just as they were on stage.
I had a string of wonderful parts on the BBC in the sixties and recently met up again (online) thanks to Facebook with Tony Garnett, a wonderful talent….. actor, producer writer.
We did a television play together The Birth of A Private Man by talented David Mercer, a very politically driven play, much of which I did not really understand. …….. Tony patiently explained much of it to me. I have strong memories of this work and felt privileged to be working with such talent -writer, actors, director ……and have very strong memories of filming all day in a Yorkshire cemetery with very thin shoes and freezing feet….sometimes sensations are easier memories.
Tony produced Kes and Cathy Comes Home, two of the most iconic productions of the age, both directed by the great Ken Loach. Cathy Comes Home resonates today, as it is a film largely about homelessness. I also played in David Mercer’s original A Suitable Case for Treatment for BBC, later turned into the film. I was incredibly lucky to have appeared in work like these, including Orwell’s 1984….seen here….it was the basis and foundation for all my work, many actors don’t have the opportunity to work with such great writing and outstanding talent, so many actors don’t have that kind of good fortune.