Linda Hayden

  1. Martine Kelly, Les grandes vacances (US: The Exchange Student), France-Italy, 1967.     Lucky to miss this dull “comedy” designed for the stutter-mutter-nutter Louis De Funes – as his (real) son falls for the English girl staying with the family to improve her French.Susan George also tested (as they both did for Candy). But Shirley went to the Paris-born Kelly.
  2. Ewa Aulin, Candy, 1968.

  3. Connie Kreskie, Can Heironymous Merkin Ever Forget Mercy Humppe and Find True Happiness, 1968.
    It was like waiting for London buses. Or cops. Nothing. Then, three come along at once… Linda had the choice of three sex-bombs at age 15.  “I was desperate for the Mercy part, any good acting part,” Linda told me in London back in the day.      The Candy screentest was much more fun!    Next day I tested for  Baby Love… Suddenly, one of my idiols, Tony Newley, got into the mix … with his title  of the  year. Linda, indeed all the girl testees, auditioned naked – Mrs Newley, Joan  Collins, being in the test set, as a protective Godmother.  “Tony saw me just as lift doors closed at the Playboy Club and I heard him shouting:  ‘Who’s that girl?’  He called down to the switchboard to stop me and send me to his office.  He couldn’t have been more charming.  He told me about the nudity, swimming naked, etc. ‘What would your father think?’  I’m sure he wouldn’t mind – and he was all over me.  Obviously, he’d come up against some heavy fathers.   My test was the big crying scenes, when he’s leaving me and I feel as if I’d been used…   Tony then gave me a lift to Baker Street in his Rolls, he was singing along with the radio.  I love it when people are that natural.  He dropped me off and I just knew I’d never see him again.   I thought Mercy was the bigger part, fine for a first movie, a title role, as well.   But it ended up as four days in Malta.  They lead you to believe it’s a star part and it’s nothing.  I thought the same about Baby Love never thought it’d be anything so big.”   A kind of juvenile minx Therorem who made  Lolita and Candy read like Hansel and Gretel.   Baby Love was not a nymphomaniac, said Linda. “Just very curious.”  The love-hungry tartar seduced the entire Quayle family: father, teenage son and mother (ironically played by Ann Lynn, Newley’s ex-wife). “Took all my engery, a lot of hard work.” Hayden never fretted about the  about nudity. She loved Newley and wanted to work with him. Well,Playmate Connie Kreski got the gig – think of free publicity in Playboy! Both films  opened in New York at the same time, and all the stars were in the same hotel. Newley apparently  recognised Linda and asked her out,. Her manager intervened, knowing full well where Tony’s intentions, as it were, laid.

  4. Madeleine Hinde, The Last Valley, 1970. “Something I really wanted – but the other girl was obviously a lot better than me. That was August and by September, producer Aida Young gave me Taste The Blood of Dracula – she’d seen Baby Love and that was enough for her.” The Michael Caine-Omar Sharif film was Hinde’s third of 19 screen roles between 1968-1980. Linda scored her 40th in 2010.
  5. Susan George, Straw Dogs, 1971.  Sweet Sue was too strong –  heroic enough to save the day for Dustin Hoffman . as her milque-toast husband… but wary, like others, of  how far director Sam Peckinpah wanted to push the rape scene. Hoffman confessed to making it just for the money but still objected to his Mr Milque-toast having such a nymphettish wife. Sweet little Sue, however, was made of sterner stuff. She fought Hollywood heavyweight Peckinpah and bravely said she’d quit rather than agree to his overly explicit portrayal of her rape.  Peckinpah gave in and kept his camera on her face, not her body.  Cuts by the UK censor then made the (three minute) sequence worse by actually implying sodomy.  (Irish censors cut the entire scene and a global video release was banned until… 2002). Jacqueline Bisset, Judy Geeson Linda Hayden, Judy Huxtable, Jennie Linden, Hayley Mills, Helen Mirren, Charlotte Rampling and Carol White were, inevitably,  also in the mix for Amy – the name of Sue’s future production  company.
  6. Michele Dotrice, Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em, TV, 1973-1978.      Hayden and  one of Doctor Who’stravelling rugs, Elisabeth Sladen, came and went about playing Michael’s Crawfod’s long-suffering, young wife, Betty Spencer.  Crawford and Dotrice came back as Frank and Betty (he pronouced it: Bett-tie) for a Sports Relief charity show… 38 years later! 
  7. Katya Wyeth, Vampira (US: Old Drac), 1974.Change of Helgain the UK tosh seen (by the US, only) as a (late) riposte to Mel Brooks, circa 1974.“If you liked Young Frankenstein, you’ll love Old Drac.”If you didn’t have a brain.

 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  7