Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Dirk's fan magazines

I have written about Dirk Bogarde quite a bit on here (as per label), he fascinated me ever since I saw him in that perfect Rank Organisation film CAMPBELL'S KINGDOM back in '57 when I was 11, then it was on to A TALE OF TWO CITIES, THE WIND CANNOT READ and all the others, and catching up with those earlier ones as well - the Doctors, the war films, the spivs. Then of course his great run in the '60s, taking risks with VICTIM, THE SERVANT and those Loseys. I still love MODESTY BLAISE! It was fascinating meeting him in 1970 when he did a lecture apperance at the London National Film Theatre (at the time DEATH IN VENICE was opening) - and of course his books and novels have all been essential. Dirk of course worked with and knew everybody from all the rising English talent to those European ladies, so it was fascinating reading about Kay Kendall, Judy, Capucine, Julie Christie, Monica Vitti, Losey, Visconti and all the rest. (Right, his album of romantic songs - he more or less recites the lyrics over syrupy arrangements, its a kitschfest now).

Back in the 50s though the fan magazines had a field day with all those studio shots of Dirk at his various homes, with his dogs, horses and devoted staff. I bought the Fan Star Library one when it was published in 1958, but it was a delight to pick up his life story in pictures recently. What a treasure it is, particularly his "romance" with Jean Simmons which could not be ... (click images to enlarge) (it also has fictional stories on those other bachelors Rock Hudson and Monty Clift). I have now though got another early '50s Dirk to watch APPOINTMENT IN LONDON another wartime drama with the lovely Dinah Sheridan, it should be as enjoyable as that delicious CAST A DARK SHADOW from 1955, another of his spivvy roles. He and Jean were reunited, by the way, at a BAFTA tribute to him sometime in the early 90s when she appeared to discuss their SO LONG AT THE FAIR.

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