The secret was out; ‘his anecdotes which are many, o u t r a g e o u s, and largely unrepeatable.’ Whilst we had been busy filming on a smelly lily pond the ‘joker’s joker’ had been languishing in the bar of the Kirkstone Foot Hotel just outside Ambleside saying that, ‘he was a lousy lover but loved to practice.’ Oh deary me. Worse was to come.
‘…baby, you’ve got to be a bit dotty.’ At least we were described as ‘bright and vivacious’.
David Blagden, our sailing director, had a small part of a prison officer in the movie Kidnapped, that we went to watch at the local cinema. It starred Michael Caine, Trevor Howard and Lawrence Douglas, with Jack Hawkins, Donald Pleasence and Gordon Jackson, but sadly not Ronald Fraser. He was still in the bar.
Suzanna Hamilton’s perspective on the day is not so very different but it is in purple.
Mediculs. A sure sign that our movie was over-schedule and over budget, with nothing much anyone could do about it but keep going. We still had to capture the houseboat. And make that splendid gentleman walk the plank.
Sophie Neville has been giving Q&As at cinemas and illustrated talks on making the movie. For more info please click here
If you would like to read more, the whole diary is included within the ebook of ‘The Secrets of Making Swallows and Amazons (1974)’ available from online retailers and Amazon Kindle for £2.99 here