Diahann Carroll

  1. Dorothy  Dandridge, Carmen Jones, 1954.    “Nothing in my young life had prepared me for this kind of heavy sexuality and I couldn’t begin to handle it even on the level of let’s-pretend.” The 19-year-old New York singer was awed by director -ogre Otto Preminger, bowled over reading with the “strong, sexy, mysterious” James Edwards. As he painted her toes and blew them dry, she “almost shot through the roof.”  Not so Preminger. “Whoever  told you,  you were sexy?” “No one!” He  gave her a walk-on as one of Carmen’s pals. 
  2. Rosalind Cash, The Omega Man, 1971.    “For years, most black actresses have been conditioned to register as ladies,” moaned Charlton Heston. “We want a girl.” 
  3. Diana Ross, Lady Sings The Blues, 1972.    Following  Dorothy Dandridge’s shock death, Diana told her lover, Motown chief Berry Gordy,  just who was going to play Billie Holiday. And it  sure wasn’t  Diahann Carroll, Lola Falana or Cicely Tyson – you got that?
  4. Meredith Baxter, The Cat Creature, TV, 1973.   Didn’t make her purr… ABC suits wanted Patty Duke for the lead. “Completely wrong,” insisted director Curtis Harrington. After losing Diahann Carroll, he booked Baxter for his  homage to Val Lewton’s feline movies of the 40’s that Kent Smith (having survived Cat People, 1942, and The Curse of the Cat People, 1943) agreed to be killed…  by a cat.  


 Birth year: 1935Death year: 2019Other name: Casting Calls:  4