Susan Hampshire


  1. Jean Seberg, Saint Joan, 1957.      She was 20, totally unknown, had not started a screen career when the tyrannical producer-director Otto Preminger was intrigued by the dyslexic Brit. He also considered Ursula Andress, Julie Andrews, Anne Bancroft, Claire Bloom, Carol Burnett, Joan Collins, Sophia Loren, Shirley MacLaine, Mary Tyler Moore, Kim Novak (from Otto’s Man With The Golden Arm, 1955), Debbie Reynolds, Maggie Smith, Liz Taylor and…Mamie Van Doren!
  2. Tippi Hedern, Marnie, 1963.      When it proved (royally, politically) impossible for Grace Kelly to return to the screen as, of all  things for a serene princess to play, a compulsive (and frigid) thief,  Alfred Hitchcock cast a wider net.  He totally engulfed the unknown Claire Griswold (Mrs Sydney Pollack)… then saw the  British Hampshire,  his contractee Vera Miles, Remick and Eva Marie Saint – his Eve Kendall in North By Northwest. 1958.
  3. Francesca Annis, Dune, 1984.


<<  Flashback

I introduced  Susan to her first husband.  Without ever meeting either of them…   In 1965, when  working as  London correspondent for  the French movie magazine, Cinémonde, I was asked to recommend some British blondes for Paris au mois d’aout –  with Charles Aznavour falling for a lovely Brit visiting Paris in August, when the city is (almost) empty of French and packed with tourists.  I sent over some photos. Julie Christie (of course), Veronica Carlson, Justine Lord, Edina Ronay and Carol White. At the last minute, although she was not one of my favourites, I decided to add a shot of Susan.  The rest is obvious. Naturally,  she won the film!   And the heart of réalisateuPierre Granier-Deferre.  (Well, she had learned French – or enough – in one week to play Patricia Seagrave). They married in 1967, had two children and divorced in 1974.



 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  3