Carol White

  1. Susan Hampshire, Paris au mois d’aôut, France, 1965.     I introduced  Susan to her first husband.  Sort of… In 1965, when working as the London correspondent  for the French movie magazine, Cinémonde, I was asked to recommend some British blondes for this film of 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, adding one of Susan at the last second, although she was no favourite of mine. The rest is obvious. She  beat Carol, Veronica Carlson, Julie Christie, Justine Lord and  Edina Ronay. Susan won the film! And the heart of realisateur Pierre Granier-Deferre.  (Well, she had learned French – or enough of it – in one week to play Patricia Seagrave). They married in 1967, had two children and divorced in 1974.
  2. Joanna Pettet,  Casino Royale, 1967.
  3. Jennie Linden, Women In Love, 1968.     Connected, certainly, with the fact that Glenda Jackson (and her new, improrved, pregnant breasts) had the better role of Gudrun, everyone else passed on being Ursula. Dunaway, Shirley MacLaine (anti-nudity), Vanessa Redgrave (never anti-nudity, calling her body part of her acting instrument) and White reportedly refused a £10,000 offer. Maybe they were right. Ken Russell’s film didn’t do much for Linden’s career – the nude wrestling of Alan Bates v Oliver Reed stole the entire movie. (And had it banned in Turkey!).

  4. 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.

 Birth year: 1941Death year: 1991Other name: Casting Calls:  4