An Evening With Dame Joan Collins

An Evening With Dame Joan Collins
Dubai Opera December 12th 2017

Sunday, September 30, 2012

PHOTO OF THE DAY : JOAN TRAVELS FAR TO A PLACE OF GOLD!

This rare photo features Joan as Catherine in the South African soap 'Egoli - Place of Gold' from 1993...

Saturday, September 29, 2012

60'S FOCUS : CAN HEIRONYMUS MERKIN EVER FORGET MERCY HUMPPE AND FIND TRUE HAPPINESS? .. 1969 ..

UNIVERSAL PICTURES
Presents

CAN HEIRONYMUS MERKIN EVER FORGET MERCY HUMPPE AND FIND TRUE HAPPINESS?
Starring

ANTHONY NEWLEY as Heironymus Merkin
JOAN COLLINS as Polyester Poontang
SASCHA NEWLEY as Thaxted
TARA NEWLEY as Thumbelina
MILTON BERLE as Good Time Eddie Filth
CONNIE KRESKI as Mercy Humppe
GEORGE JESSEL as The Prescence
BRUCE FORSTYH as Uncle Limelight
PATRICIA HAYES as Grandma
STUBBY KAYE as Fat Writer
RONALD RUBIN as Skinny Writer
ROSALIND KNIGHT as Penelope
VICTOR SPINETTI as Sharpnose
JUDY CORNWELL as Filigree Fondle
MARGARET NOLAN as Little Assistance
YOLANDA as Trampolena Wham Bang
LYNDA BARON as Baby Boobala Salesgirl
JOYCE BLAIR as Oat-O-Rinos Girl
Muriel Young as Liz Harper

Assistant Director - Roy Frift   Director of Photography - Otto Heller B.S.C  Music by Anthony Newley
      Lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer    Art Director -William Constable  Edited by Bernard Gribble
     Written by Anthony Newley & Herman Raucher   Produced & Directed by Anthony Newley

Heironymus Merkin is going through a midlife crisis and in the presence of his wife Polyester and his two children, he replays the story of his life, from a child puppet actor, to a film/pop idol. His marriage is falling apart as he cavorts with buxom Mercy Humppe, egged on by his agent Eddie Filth and a presence who may or may not be death! With nine original songs, a bevy of beauties and spectacular dance numbers, the question still remains.... Can Heironymus Merkin Ever Forget Mercy Humppe And Find True Happiness?

   (c) 1969 .. (Re-released 1972) .. UNIVERSAL ...  107 MINS ...  Color .... Rated X ......

"Heironymus Merkin" was a labour of love for it's star Anthony Newley, who also wrote, produced and directed the film, which is almost biographical, as it tells it's story as a movie within a movie. Joan who was married to Newley at the time, plays his wife Polyester, with their children Tara and Sacha playing the children. Newley who performs six of the nine songs in the film, described the production as...
" A potpourri of entertainment on a very wide canvas in which for once, I'm the painter, instead of one of the daubs of paint!"
Publicity cited the film as...
" A free wheeling kaleidoscope of fantasy, reality, the past, present and ultra modern future..all fused in oppulent colour!"
The cast and crew spent ten weeks on the island of Malta, with some location work in Gozo and final production in London. Joan at the time praised the role of Polyester...
" The role was more enjoyable than anything else I've ever played.I understand the character."
She also commented on the film itself as....
" It's full of the subtle tongue in cheek humour I adore!"
At the time of shooting, Malta a strict Catholic country, frowned upon certain aspects of the filming. Co-star Judy Cornwall commented that they were not allowed to enter any churches and even wearing mini skirts was frowned upon. She said even the local peasant women spat on them! But the film was savaged by the critics..
DAILY TELEGRAPH..
" For pretentiousness and vulgarity, not to say tedium, "Heironymus Merkin" would be hard to equal!"

THE ILLUSTRATED LONDON NEWS...
" The kindest thing for all concerned would be that every available copy should be quietly and decently buried!"

THE NEW YORK TIMES...
" Newley so overextends and overexposes himself, that the movie comes to look like an act of professional suicide!"

ROGER EBER...
"It is a movie that sags under the weight of too much invention, rather than too little. The miracle is that Newley is able to keep all the pieces somehow related. He also is able to get them to add up to a statement or at least a feelin about the nature of life. The result is more of a juggling feat than a directorial triumph, but it's a good act while it's onstage!"


But although shooting the film in sunny Malta. on an idyllic beach probably sounded like a dream gig, according to Joan it was hell! She was tormented with the heat and dust, not to mention the flies and a hurricane that howled the whole time, she was there. Although the film was a total flop, it did win the 1970 Writers Guild of Great Britain Award for Best Original Screenplay for Newley & Raucher.  The collaboration between Joan and Newley proved to be the final nail in their matrimonial coffin. Before it's release Joan sat in a Soho screening room and came to the conclusion that their marriage was over. The film is hard to find today, but it is on occasion is screened by the British Film Institute. A screening was recently held there as a tribute to Newley along with some rare TV work of his. It has been screened on cable TV in the USA, but in an edited R rated version, minus 15 minutes of footage and three of the songs. The original version of the film received an X rating in the USA, which is usually reserved for adult films. In keeping with the rating in the USA, Playboy magazine devoted ten pages to the film in it's March 1969 issue. The film did star one of the magazine's centrefolds, Connie Kreski, who was Miss January 1968. Apparently Newley bumped into her in the elevator at London's Playboy Club and offered her the part!! All in all it is one of a kind film and it certainly will not easily be forgotten!!

 

 
(c)  2010 ... Mark McMorrow....

Friday, September 28, 2012

PHOTO OF THE DAY : LOVE IS BACK TO BACK FOR JOAN AND STACEY!

This promo shot from 2000 features Joan and Stacey Keach who toured in a production of 'Love Letters' around the USA.. On some dates George Hamilton performed with Joan....

PHOTO OF THE DAY : JOAN'S IN A SPIN ON BBC!

This portrait of Joan was used to promote Joan's edition of popular BBC Radio show 'Desert Island Discs' in 1989.. It was also used in the book by Sue Lawley based on the programme..

Thursday, September 27, 2012

TRIBUTE : HERBERT LOM.. 1917 - 2012 ..

SIGNED PHOTO OF HERBERT WITH JOAN IN THE HUMAN JUNGLE

HERBERT WITH JOAN, ROBERT HARDY AND CHRISTOPHER LEE

 
Sad to hear that the great actor Herbert Lom passed away earlier today.. The star of over 100 films including classics.. 'Spartacus' .. 'The LadyKillers', 'El Cid' and 'The Pink Panther' films, Herbert also starred in the clasic 60's drama series 'The Human Jungle'.. Joan guest starred in this series and co-starred with him in the 1973 thriller 'Dark Places'... He passed away in his sleep at the good age of 95!
JOAN AND HERBERT IN THE HUMAN JUNGLE

PHOTO OF THE DAY : IT'S A FAMILY AFFAIR FOR JOAN!


This lovely portrait is from a shoot for a Help the Aged charity campaign in 2003 and features Joan with Tara and her daughter Miel....

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

DVD UPDATE : ESTHER AND THE KING.. REG 2 ..KSM KLASSIKER..SEPTEMBER 2012..

Delighted to announce that the new German dvd release of 'Esther And The King' in which Joan starred with Richard Egan from 1960, is the definite version that I have seen! The film has been available over the years in cruddy vhs quality, full screen version, but after viewing this editon, was thrilled to see it in Widescreen 16.9, with Dolby English soundtrack.. There is a German track on the disc also, but it was great to finally see the film in all it's full colour and scope.. Extras include the original trailer, photo gallery and bio's of Joan and Richard.The dvd sleeve is reversible with original poster art on one side and artwork similar to the original 90's Fox video release on the other.... So well worth a purchase .. You can order from www.amazon.de .. more details at www.ksmfilm.de .....

PHOTO OF THE DAY : JOAN HAS A HARTY LUNCH WITH A MANS BEST FRIEND!

Joan shares the limelight in this photo with Freeway the Hart's lovable dog in the 1995 feature length film of 'Hart to Hart - 2  Harts In Three Quarters Time'.. In which she starred with old friends Robert Wagner and Stefanie Powers..

Monday, September 24, 2012

PHOTO OF THE DAY : JOAN DISPLAYS HER CARTIER AFFAIR!

This great photo features Joan and David Hasselhoff in a promo shot for the 1984 tv movie 'The Cartier Affair'....

Sunday, September 23, 2012

PHOTO OF THE DAY : JOAN'S ON Q FOR A CLASSIC DOUBLE ACT!

This rare photo from 1954 features Joan as Claudia with Donald Houston as David in the play 'Claudia' which featured at the Q Theatre in London..
 

Saturday, September 22, 2012

PHOTO OF THE DAY : JOAN'S NO COWARD WHEN IT COMES TO BEEN ON STAGE!

This promo photo features Joan in one ot the intro sections of her 1991 BBC series 'Tonight at 8.30'...

60'S FOCUS : LO STATO D'ASSEDIO - STATE OF SIEGE ... 1969

CINEGAI
Presents
 
LO STATO D'ASSEDIO

Starring
JOAN COLLINS as Roberta
MATHIEU CARRIERE as Lorenzo
FAITH DOMERGUE as Anita
ANTONIO CENTA as Console
FRANK WOLFF as Vallauri
MASSIMO SERATO as Crusich

           Cinematography - Mario Carbone  Edited by Romeo Ciatti  Music by Robby Poitevin 
                     Screenplay by Gianfranco Galligarich  Produced by Felice Testa Gay
                                                      Directed by Romano Scavolini

Hard time fall on a wealthy shipbuilding family as the recession hits and labour unrest escalates. When Lorenzo returns home from college, he forms an unhealthy interest in his mother, while resenting his father and seducing an older family friend, Roberta! After he is rejected by the student protest movement, he is seduced by a gay man, Crusich. On the picket line at the shipbuilding docks, one of the workers in despair commits suicide by diving into an empty holding tank! As the strike continues, the family break under the strain and their wealth is diminished. A family in turmoil..Caught up in a State of Siege!

AKA :  " BESIEGED (USA) ... STATE OF SIEGE ( EUROPE) .. L'AMORE BREVE (EUROPE)

    (c)  1969   CINEGAI      82 MINS   COLOUR ....

This art house style film was shot on location in Trieste and in Gorizia in a house where Ernest Hemingway wrote "A Farewell To Arms" and it was directed by Romano Scavolini, a dedicated communist! Scavolini despised Hollywood films and ordered his cast to remain straight faced on camera, with no smiling! Ironically today he is only remembered for his 1980 gory slasher, the notorious "Nightmare". This once banned shocker bears all the trademarks of Hollywood schlock, albeit on a low budget, although to be fair there is definately no laughs in this contoversial film.
Joan had to do her first nude scene in this film and it did not help that they had to do it in artic conditions! She had to do the scene with a much younger actor Mathieu Carriere. To get them through it they were given a bottle of brandy by the director to somehow warm them both up! But all it did was make them drunk and unable to shoot the scene. There was nothing sexy about it as Joan had to put on layers of tights, socks and leg warmers. She also decided to put camera tape on her chest to try and protect her modesty! This was fine until it was time to take it off and the tape had stuck to her like glue, needless to say she was sore for days after! The film also starred fifties star Faith Domergue, who incidentally was employed as an interpreter on Joan's earlier film "Decameron Nights", this was her first Italian film. Faith recalled a few years ago..
" The film had a very interesting script, where I play a Trieste socialite, a beautiful and desirable woman of good family. Joan Collins plays my best friend and Mathieu Carriere plays my son, who is eighteen and in love with his mother! The director was communist and the film was built around the social collapse of Trieste. It was shot in half Italian and half English. Joan and I had some semi-nude scenes in the film and we both agonised over how we were going to shoot them! I thought Joan was sensational in the film and I had some scenes with her and she helped me a great deal, a very generous person and much more experienced. In one scene with Joan, I am speaking to her about the affair my son is having with someone, not knowing it's Joan's character, Roberta. Both of us are dressed beautifully, while I show Joan around my mansion. Being a shallow woman and proud of my wealth, I had to show my jealousy of my son's affair, was difficult for me to convey. But Joan was wonderful in helping me creat that!"
The film premiered at the Venice Film Festival, but it was not a commercial success. It is seldom seen anywhere but it was at one time available on Video in Canada under the "L'amore Breve", in Italian language only..Hopefully it will turn up at some stage on DVD.. Watch this space!

(c)  2010 ...   Mark McMorrow..

Friday, September 21, 2012

EVENT UPDATE : DELRAY BEACH CENTER FOR THE ARTS ..JANUARY 17TH ..2013 ..

Just to mention that Joan's January 17th 2013 Lecture at The Delray Beach Center for The Arts has now sold out! For returns check with venue or take a look at http://delraycenterforthearts.org/index.php/attend/lectures .....
Delray Beach is just 45 minutes from Palm Beach!

PHOTO OF THE DAY : JOAN ON STALKOUT FOR NEW ROLE!

This fun photo features Joan in a scene from the 1999 commercial for the Olympus 75 izoom camera...

Thursday, September 20, 2012

DVD UPDATE : DYNASTY SEASON 9 .. JANUARY 30TH 2013 ..REGION 2 UK & IREALND..

As I mentioned recently the dvd release of Dynasty season 9 has been put back to January 30th of next year.. As yet the final cover art has not been finalised, however here is a look at the German sleeve under the 'Der Denver Clan' title.. Would expect the UK cover will be similar.....

PHOTO OF THE DAY : LUCKY IS HOBSON'S CHOICE IN THE PALISADES!

This little seen shot features Joan as Christina Hobson with co-star Lucky Vanous on the 1997 Aaron Spelling drama series 'Pacific Palisades'....

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

PHOTO OF THE DAY : JOAN SHOWS HER BRAVADO!

Joan looking pretty on location for the 1958 western 'The Bravados' in which she co-starred with Gregory Peck, who taught how to ride a horse for role in the Fox release...

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

TV ALERT : HAPPILY DIVORCED! ..NOVEMBER 2012!

Joan returns to USA tv this fall, when she makes a guest appearance on Fran Drescher's hit TV Land show 'Happily Divorced' which features Fran as an LA florist who finds out her husband is gay and to make ends meet they both continue to share a house.. Also starring John Michael Higgins, Robert Walden and Rita Moreno with occasional appearances by Fran's 'Nanny' co-star Renee Taylor.. Joan will film her role next month, as an icon who is looking for an assistant and employs Peter, (Fran's gay husband).. He soon discovers it can be difficult having to deal with two very strong women! New episodes premiere from November 28th on TV Land... Watch this space for updates!!




PHOTO OF THE DAY : JOAN STEERS AWAY FROM SINNERS!

This shot features Joan as Helene in the lavish 1986 mini-series 'Sins'...

Monday, September 17, 2012

EVENT ALERT .. CHILLER THEATRE .. PARSIPPANY NJ .. OCTOBER 26 - 28TH 2012 ..


Just to mention that Joan will attend the popular celebrity covention Chiller, which has a new location for it's October show.. The new venue is the Sheraton hotel in Parsippany New Jersey.. Joan will only be appearing on Friday 26th from 6pm to 11pm and on Saturday 27th from 11am to 7pm..Among the other stars attending will be Connie Stevens, Penny Marshall and Nancy Kwan.. You can also meet Lee Majors .. Patty Duke .. Valerie Harper .. Linda Thorson .. Pamela Sue Martin .. Audrey Landers .. Lee Meriwether and many more ... Check out http://www.chillertheatre.com/main.htm  or see link on sidebar!
Joan appears at Chiller by courtesy of Karen Cadle .. see www.karencadleinternational.com and link on sidebar!

PHOTO OF THE DAY : JOAN SEE'S EYE TO EYE WITH HARRY!


This rare promo photo features Joan with Harry Fowler in her first major role in the 1952 drama..'I Believe In You'.....

Sunday, September 16, 2012

PHOTO OF THE DAY : JOAN'S NO SQUARE WHEN IT COMES TO BOXING CLEVER!

This rare photo features Joan on set of the 1953 boxing drama 'The Square Ring', which also starred her then husband Maxwell Reed..

PROMO FLASHBACK : CELLNET AD CAMPAIGN ..1987 ..

Over the years Joan has been asked to endorse many products and services and none so since she became a worldwide superstar from her starring role on 'Dynasty'.. Here is a promo sheet for a 1987 tv campaign for the then new best thing since sliced bread, the cell phone.. Of course today the mobile phone is more common than..sliced bread! Joan filmed a 20second commercial for the company along with Nigel Mansell, Richard Branson and Ian Botham...

Saturday, September 15, 2012

PHOTO OF THE DAY : THE STAGE IS A GREAT ADVENTURE FOR JOAN!

This rare photo features Joan as Saloon Owner Sonia in the 1975 family film 'The Great Adventure' also starring Jack Palance...

60'S FOCUS : SUBTERFUGE ..1968 ...

COMMONWEALTH UNITED ENTERTAINMENT
Presents

SUBTERFUGE 
Starring
GENE BARRY as Donovan
JOAN COLLINS as Anne Langley
RICHARD TODD as Colonel Victor Redmayne
TOM ADAMS as Peter Langley
SUZANNA LEIGH as Donetta
MICHAEL RENNIE as Goldsmith
MARIUS GORING as Shevik
SCOTT FORBES as Pannell
COLIN GORDON as Kitteridge
GUY DEGHY as DR Lundgren
DERMOT KELLY as Van Driver
GRETCHEN FRANKLIN as Bus Conductress

Executive Producer - Trevor Wallace    Assistant Director - Andrew Grieve    Music by Cyril Ornades 
 Director of Photography - Roy Garner  Screenplay by David Whitaker  Edited by Bill Lewhaite G.B.E.E
                                      Produced by Peter Snell     Directed by Peter Graham Scott 
When Donovan, an American special agent arrives in London for a vacation, little does he know the intrigue that awaits him! Donovan has to fight to stay alive and ahead of the game... Escaping torture, but with the enemy on his trail, he seeks solace with Anne, the glamorous wife of a fellow agent, Langley.. But Langley cant be trusted and Donovan must race against time to save a kidnapped boy and unmask the traitor in his midst! Cross and double cross! It's an amazing nightmare of deception! An explosive Subterfuge!!
(c)  1968  Commonwealth   100 mins  Color  ...

Before filming "Subterfuge", Joan once again appeared in many television hits of the time, which have since went on to become cult classics. She filmed an episode of "Star Trek", entitled "City on the Edge of Forever". She also appeared with Doug McClure on "The Virginian" and an episode of "The Danny Thomas Hour" with Bing Crosby. Another cult favourite was her appearance as "The Siren" on "Batman", alongside Adam West. 
"Subterfuge" was filmed in London and the Home Counties over four weeks. Although billed as an exciting Espionage thriller, it more resembles an extended advert for the London tourist board! It's star Gene Barry also starred in the NBC series "The Name Of The Game", on a rotation basis, which allowed him to make an occasional film. Co-star Michael Rennie previously appeared with Joan in the Fox release "Island in the Sun", while Richard Todd co-starred in "The Virgin Queen". Todd would work again with Joan in the play "Murder In Mind" in 1979. The film's bad girl Suzanna Leigh commented on her role.
" I always wanted to play a baddie. It is a new image for me.. In this part I go all the way! Killing! Kidnapping! you name it! I love it!"
Joan appears in a variety of outfits that she co-ordinated herself and even gets a screen credit for her fashion flair! However the film was a passable time waster and reviewers were not too kind.
VARIETY
 " 'Subterfuge' showcases Joan Collin's special physical attractiveness, however in the course of the plot development, Miss Collin's son is kidnapped. While the actress appears properly distraught in the scene where she is informed of this fact, two scenes and some hours later, she appears in the highest of high fashion clothes and complicated new hairstyles. One would think the worried mom had spent the afternoon at Harrods and at the hairdresser to impress the kidnapper's!"
The film was shot using the newly introduced Addavision cameras that allowed for immediate playback of the shoot. Joan was still married to Anthony Newley at the time and on completion of this film, she would start shooting the infamous flop "Heironymus Merkin", with Newley. While not an great film, "Subterfuge" does have a good cast of British film veterans and is a passable time waster!
 
 






 (c) 2010 ... Mark McMorrow.