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Katharine Ross

 

  1. Carroll Baker, The Carpetbaggers, 1964.    How she got to Hollywood... Ross wasdiscovered in a San Francisco stage troupe and invioted to ,test for the Rina Marlowe movie queenbased on Jean Harlow.  She didn’t please New York producer Joseph E Levine (but then as Baker proved, what did he know). Universal execs saw the test  and gave Ross a long-term contract.
  2. Faye Dunaway, Bonnie and Clyde, 1966.
  3. Jacqueline Bisset, Bullitt, 1968.   Ross passed, giving a third Hollywood break to Bisset. The real stars, however, were Steve McQueen, his stunt double Bud Ekins and their 1968 Ford Mustang 390 GT 2+2 Fastback in the classic 10 minutes 53 seconds car chase.  
  4. Jacqueline Bisset, Airport, 1969.    Another gift from Ross became Bisset’s fifth LA  rôle in  succession – or was it that the Brit  had the better agent.  (Plus aproval by Sinatra and McQueen). The top-billed Burt Lancaster called it “the worst piece of junk ever made. ” (It made  him the most he’d ever made from one movie, at least $7m).
  5. Mia Farrow, The Public Eye, 1972.    When planned with Paul Scofield.
  6. Mia Farrow, The Great Gatsby, 1973.  Among the final five Daisy Buchanans with  Farrow, Candice Bergen, Lois Chiles, Faye Dunaway - after Paramount’s owner Charles Bludhorn ruled that Ali MacGraw, wed to the studio’s production chief, Robert Evans, “is not doing this picture. Is.That. Clear?”  Tuesday Weld and Natalie Wood were also in the loop.   Chiles  won the other girl,  the "faster" Jordan Baker,  as Bergen and Farrow went to the wire.  Producer David Merrick wanted “aristocratic looks, hard to find in an actress.”  Farrow won.  With the looks of a ‘flu victim with a 103 temperature.
  7. Barbara Bain, Space: 1999, TV, 1973-1977.   The married UK producersGerry and Sylvia Anderson, did not always agree.For their first non-puppetry space series, Sylvia wanted the leads to be Culp and Katharine Ross.Gerry still pulled the strings - er, and tycoon Lew Grade! They both voted for a real couple, the Mission: Impossible stars Bain and Martin Landau. The then most expensive UK seriesstarted shooting in 1973, but didn’t debut until ’75.
  8. Faye Dunaway, Voyage of the Damned, 1976.  Ross had the looks. Dunaway had the Oscar.
  9. Therese Ann Savoy, Caligula, 1978.

  10. Jessica Lange, Frances,1982.     
    Howard Hawks  said  she always seemed to be shining. “More talent than anyone I ever worked with.” She and Vivien Leigh were beaten by Ingrid Bergman to For Whom The Bell Tolls, 1943 She’s the subject of various books, plays (viz Sally Clarke’s Saint Frances of Hollywood),  pop and rock songs  - French-Canadian singer Mylène Farmer even took her name. All actresses loved her talent and guts (when wrongfully committed to asylums by her parents) and  wanted to ply…  Frances Farmer.  From the sublime to the ridiculous: Meryl Streep to Susan Dey  of TV’s Partridge Family. Kim Basinger tested with Sam Shepard (Lange’s husband). Undaunted Susan Blakely made her own 1983  TVersion (from Farmer’s book, Will There Really Be A Morning?). Plus Anne Archer, Blythe Danner, Patty Duke, Mia Farrow, Sally Field, Jane Fonda, Goldie Hawn, Glenda Jackson, Diane Keaton, Liza Minnelli, Katharine Ross, Susan Sarandon, Cybill Shepherd, Sissy Spacek, Tuesday Weld, Natalie Wood. Plus Constance Money, who met  with  producer  Mel Brooks and debuting director Graeme Clifford. They liked her. Not her CV. Seven porno fikms in three years.  Even if they used her real name (Sue Jensen), someone would have blown an expensive whistle about her hardcore career.

 

 

 





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