SUSAN GEORGE

SUSAN GEORGE Officially

Susan GeorgeSusan George

So far, I think everything I’ve ever wanted to do, I’ve actually done,” says Susan

One of the most persistent grouses among British actresses was always that they didn’t get the good breaks in British pictures. The plum roles and films they moaned, always pivoted on the men. Think back, they’ll say, can you recall when a film last centered on a woman? Well, things have changed. Many English actresses are being given tremendous chances to show us what they’re made of.

Among them is Susan George who certainly can’t complain about the acting roles offered her.

Although still a youngster, she was born on 26th July 1950, she’s already tackled parts that many another talented actress might have wanted to get her teeth into.

Twinky was just one instance. To be cast in the important title role was fortunate, but then to have a top American actor, Charles Bronson, as your co-star – that’s bounty, indeed!

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TRANSATLANTIC SUSAN

in the privacy of her Hollywood home and in the glare of the London limelight

I have a home over here as well as in America,” she told me. “My English house is at Wraysbury, by the Thames, not far from where I was brought up in my parents” hotel at Maidenhead.

“My new home in Los Angeles is always full of friends from England who are just passing through. Most of my close acquaintances are people I have known for years and can feel comfortable with. It’s a kind of home-from-home for them, and the parties I have there are very informal. It’s hard to keep out of the limelight. I suppose I’m a kind of public figure to most people, and the gossip columnists are always writing something about me, but most of it is pure fabrication. There’s no substance to most of the things they say. You have to maintain your own personality if you want to survive in Hollywood. It can be a tough town, but you have to believe in yourself and not be taken in by the glamour of it all.

“I enjoy going to parties in Hollywood, but they’re mostly with people who are in showbusiness. We have the same interests and there’s a lot of shop talk. But don’t think I’m always going out on the town. Sometimes I just stay home and don’t go out for weeks. The newspapers have a certain kind of image of me and they want to uphold it whether there’s any truth or not. I have only to meet a male friend on the street and it becomes fodder for reporters as a ‘hot’ romance.

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Leo Star Birthday SUSAN GEORGE

Susan, who was born in Surbiton, Surrey, made her film bow at the age of 4, and by the time she had reached the ripe old age of 5 she was appearing in TV commercials. After leading parts in Children’s Film Foundation movies, her first feature film was The Sorcerers with Boris Karloff. Since then she has had many starring roles including Billion Dollar Brain, Up the Junction, Spring And Port Wine and Straw Dogs. We shall shortly be seeing her again in Dirty Mary And Crazy Larry in which she stars with Peter Fonda. Susan is typical of Leo in that she is a completely dedicated actress, always striving for perfection in all her roles.


Susan George (above) found the experience of working with Dustin Hoffman recently on The Straw Dogs “fascinating and rewarding”. She plays the role of the young sensual wife of Dustin. “The most marvellous and worthwhile role I’ve ever had. I feel it’s a turning point in my life,” she says. At 20, Susan who can be both sexy and sweet on the screen, is one of our most talented young actresses, with a figure to match, as you can see in our picture.


Susan George took me on a tour of her current home in the Hollywood Hills and discounted those rumours that she’s forsaken England for good. “I love England,” she told me, not without a trace of pride, “and nothing in the world would make me leave it permanently.” And just to make it feel a bit more like home, she flies the jolly old Union Jack from her rooftop. Before she returns to England at Christmas, she’ll be making another film here and recording a new song, with plans in the offing to record an album. I hadn’t heard her current song, presently in the top record charts, but across the kitchen table Susan perched on a chair and treated me to a rendering of three new songs she’d just scribbled into a notepad — and take it from me, the girl is loaded with talent. She writes beautiful, sensitive words, and in particular I loved a song called “Romance”. If she ever decides to record it, I’m certain the song will be a winner.


Susan George

Age: 54

Born: Surbiton, Surrey

Looks: A Seventies blonde babe who oozed sex appeal. Although she’s still strikingly attractive, blonde and enviably slim, these days Susan prefers a more demure image.

Career: Shot to fame in the controversial 1971 movie Straw Dogs and made it big in Hollywood with Dirty Mary Crazy Larry. But followed up with a series of forgettable turkeys such as The House Where Evil Dwells.

Formed her own production company, Amy International, in the late Eighties and had some modestly successful films, such as Stealing Heaven. Now runs a stud farm in Northamptonshire.

Marital status: After dating some of the world’s most eligible bachelors, including Prince Charles, Susan married actor Simon MacCorkindale in 1984. The couple have no children.


SUSAN GEORGE
TURNING HERBS INTO HORSE CURES

Susan George has developed a range of homeopathic remedies for horses at the Arabian stud farm she runs in Northamptonshire with actor husband Simon MacCorkindale. The film and TV actress is honorary president of the Horse of the Year Show.


Susan George

is Dirty Mary, an earthy character in a film called Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry. Peter Fonda is Larry, a steel-nerved stock car racer turned outlaw. Mary goes along for the ride with Larry in more ways than one.

Does it seem odd to east an English girl as an American chick?

‘Why should it?’ says Susan. ‘I’ve had a lot of acting experience, 14 films and dozens of TV shows. I should be able to play an American. I’m used to acting with Americans anyway. I’ve acted with Telly Savalas,Charles Bronson, Dustin Hoffman.’

And at the moment Susan is making another film with an American co-star, Cliff Robertson. It is called Winter Rates, now in production at EMI Elstree Studios.


Susan George: “I’m No Walking Stick!”

For all the male fans of the sultry SUSAN GEORGE, beware of a woman who loves deeply—but has a career drive that is as strong as any man. SUSAN, who drives men wild in A Small Town In Texas with her seductive ways, has finally broken up with JACK JONES. It was not an easy decision for SUSAN but one she had to make as do many other actresses in order to pursue their careers. SUSAN admitted: “I didn’t work much during my four years with JACK JONES. Being with him was what was important to me. I will certainly always love him. But with him there was no way I could not sacrifice my career. Now my old career drive is into focus.” The ending of that relationship was very hard on SUSAN: “After I broke with JONES, I thought I’d had a limb removed. I hit rock bottom, driving around with my dog in the back of the car and a suitcase. I’ve discovered since then I’m really all right. I had let myself slip away until I didn’t know if I liked myself or not. Now I wake up and say, ‘Hey, I am a good person.’ I can discover now what I want to do. I’m no walking stick. It’s only added to my strength. But if I fell in love tomorrow, I would be more cautious, aware, and evaluate more.” A walking stick never—but don’t be too “cautious,” SUSAN. Many an actress has led a lonely life trying to curl up with only her press clippings to keep her warm!


It was Susan George’s mother, Billie, who stole the scene in a bright black and white outfit against her daughter’s paler shades when the two dined together at San Lorenzo in London. Susan helped Billie down the stairs before posing for photographs.


Desperately Seeking Susan

At the very mention of her old friend Prince Charles, sexy actress Susan George is likely to remain mysterious like the next whodunnit series of Cluedo in which she stars as the twice-married, twice-widowed and much courted society hostess, Mrs Peacock.

We’re at 17th Century Arley Hall in Cheshire where Susan is filming a new TV role for the six-part series which begins on Monday May 4, (ITV, 7pm). As the cast, including Tom Baker, Lewis Collins and Lysette Anthony (pictured right) revel in the fun of the TV murder game, Susan is still keeping quiet on the subject of royalty, despite one offer of a reported £500,000 to talk.

But the beautiful blonde has more immediate problems to cope with, like breaking a foot and spraining an ankle after falling down a flight of stairs at Arley Hall. “It was the high heels and a long skirt,” she says on return to the set after a week’s convalescing.

The star, noted for films like Straw Dogs, Dirty Mary Crazy Larry and Venom, is thrilled to be back in front of the cameras. For the past few years she’s been producing films, along with her husband actor Simon MacCorkindale. First came Stealing Heaven, a 12th Century love affair, then White Roses, starring Rod Steiger and Tom Conti, about Jewish refugees escaping the Nazis.

With their film company, Amy International, they now plan another film, about the life and disappearance of Lord Lucan.

She believes all this work has also stopped the couple from starting a family. “We became consumed in the films,” she says. “But that doesn’t mean the idea of babies has gone. I know time is running out but I’d still like children,” says the 41-year-old Susan.

But, back to the board game that became a series. Colonel Mustard (Lewis Collins) is getting suspiciously close to Miss Scarlett (Lysette Anthony). And in the kitchen Mrs White (Pam Ferris – Ma Larkin from The Darling Buds Of May) is cooking up a poisonous feast. Very soon, someone will be dead and it’s up to viewers to help sort out whodunnit?

Mrs Peacock is the proud owner of Arlington Grange, but she finds herself protecting her guests from suspicion of murder. The suspense is killing but as for finding out who the culprit is -we’ll just have wait and see!


STRIP TEASE

Susan George reveals to Total Film how she got the part – and a glimpse of Peckinpah’s pecker…

Following an exhausting round of screen tests, interviews and “testy” meetings with Peckinpah, Hoffman and the producers, 20-year-old Susan George felt she’d given everything, but never dared believe she’d snagged the role of her career.

As the shoot neared, she was summoned to Peckinpah’s office for the good or bad news. His secretary was engaged in a difficult phone call, and she waved George away.

“I noticed that the door to Peckinpah’s office was slightly ajar, so I edged it open to see who was in there and if I was expected. There was Dustin Hoffman, Daniel Melnick and Sam Peckinpah, engaged in a heated argument – raised voices, arms waving. I stood there for a while, but they didn’t seem to notice me. So I started to back out of the room. As I did, I dropped my eyeline and saw they all had their trousers round their ankles and were, well, showing everything from the waist down. Then there was a roar of laughter and then Peckinpah looked at me and said: ‘Welcome aboard, Amy’.

“It had all been an elaborate joke and as they were laughing I realised I’d got the part – they’d hardly have gone through something like that if they were going to give me bad news.”


The Eastender Who Stole Prince Charles’ Heart

1970s movie babe Susan George, who dated Royals and sports stars, steps into Albert Square as Terry’s love interest.

She’s dated Prince Charles, Jimmy Connors and George Best and starred in more than 30 films before putting her acting career on hold. Now at the age of 50, Susan George is back in the limelight once more, as Margaret, Terry’s glamorous new girlfriend in EastEnders.

Margaret’s arrival in Albert Square has turned heads, but it soon becomes apparent that all is not as it seems with the sophisticated newcomer. It’s a plum role for Susan, who has spent the last few years away from the cameras breeding horses and dogs and running a film production company with her actor husband, Simon MacCorkindale.

“Animals in general and horses in particular have been the great love of my life,” she says. “At one time, my ultimate wish would have been to run a working farm, but it’s a very, very hard occupation and I don’t think it would be possible to be a farmer and an actor-producer.

“I was probably born at the wrong time because I’m very old-fashioned in my heart, in my views, in my passion for the gentler, more rustic life of a bygone age. I used to spend my days in Ralph Lauren in Bond Street, but now I spend my days in the local farm shops.”

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LIFE, even for beautiful I film stars, does not always run smoothly. Susan George waded through the ankle-deep carpet in her Buckinghamshire living room waving a piece of paper and recounting a tale familiar to us all.

“Look at this,” she says. “The postman left this note today saying he tried to deliver a parcel, but I wasn’t in – when I was. Now the Post Office say they’ve no record of a parcel for me.”

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I play it clean says Dirty Mary
(alias Susan George)

To say that Susan George is one of Britain’s brightest young stars might seem to be a blinding glimpse of the obvious, but what else can one say about an actress with such a string of successes to her name at the age of 24, and who is equally in demand on both sides of the Atlantic? Chauvinistic Hollywood columnists don’t as a rule care for English actresses playing American girl roles, but they gave unstinted praise for Susan’s performance in Dirty Mary Crazy Larry. Terrific’ was how one Hollywood writer described her portrayal, adding his praise for her handling of the American accent, which is always a touchy point with our American friends.

The key to her success lies, of course, in her ingrained, double-dyed professionalism. Susan was born in 1950 and made her film debut at the age of 10 with a brief appearance in a children’s film called Cup Fever. But it was when she reached the age of eleven-and-three-quarters that she was taught a lesson she has never forgotten. She was sent to audition to understudy one of the children in the stage version of The Sound Of Music, her agent drumming it into her that on no account was she to reveal her true age.

I went on the huge stage,’ she says, ‘and a voice boomed out from the back of the blackened stalls: “What is your name?” “Susan George, sir,” I replied. “How old are you, Susan George?” “Twelve, sir,” I fibbed, remembering what I’d been told. I sang my piece, waited around, and finally they told me the part was mine. I was more than thrilled and delighted, I was ecstatic – until the crunch came the following day when they discovered my real age.

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