Tuesday, March 2, 2010



Starring Jack Warner as Danny Felton; Robert Beatty as Kid Curtis; Maxwell Reed as Rick Martell; Bill Owen as Happy Burns; Kay Kendall as Eve; Bernadette O’ Farrell as Peg Curtis; Eddie Byrne as Lou Lewis;
Sidney James as Adams; Alfie Bass as Frank Forbes; Bill Travers as Rowdie Rawlings; Ronald Lewis as Eddie Lloyd; Joan Sims as Bunty

And Joan Collins as Frankie

Art Director-Jim Morahan. Editor-Peter Bezencenet. Director of Photography-Otto Heller. Screenplay by Robert Westerby. From a Play by Ralph W Peterson. Additional Dialogue by Peter Myers. Assistant Director-Norman Priggen. Produced by Michael Relph. Directed by Basil Dearden.

Jim Curtis known as Kid, a once top championship boxer, is making a
comeback from obscurity. Trying to get over a failed marriage, he yearns for one more year at the top, before finally retiring. But tragedy strikes a blow, when he goes head to head with Rick Martell and now he must fight for his life in THE SQUARE RING!!

©1953 Ealing Films 83mins B/W Reg2 Dvd- Optimum Classics.

Made in 1953, Joan plays a small role of Frankie, the girlfriend of a disillusioned boxer played by her then real-life husband Maxwell Reed. The film relates the events of an evening at a provincial boxing stadium and was originally a stage play by Ralph W. Peterson. Reed plays Rick Martell, a boxer known for throwing fights, who has lost all his self respect and hides it behind a mask of pure bravado! Life was almost imitating art as Reed himself was feeling less than adequate, blaming Joan for upstaging him in their scenes together. She felt uneasy around him and the frightened look she conveys in the film was not all down to her acting. Critics at the time of it release were mixed, one commenting. “A Uneven mix. Veering between comedy and tragedy.”

A TV version starring Sean Connery in the role of Rick, along with Alan Bates, was broadcast as an ITV play of the week in 1958. Joan at this time was beginning to become fed up of been a Rank starlet as she hated the roles she was been offered. She wasn’t keen on the incompetence of the hairdressers and makeup artists they employed. She was appalled at the levels of makeup she had to wear : "three inches of slop" she commented in an interview In 1980. But it did teach her to properly clean her face every evening of all makeup and she started to do her own makeup on film sets, which she still does to this day.

After “The Square Ring” Rank had no other roles for Joan and Reed so they decided to accept a limited run of the Pulitzer prize winning Thornton Wilder play “The Skin of Our Teeth.” In it Joan played the part of Sabina, a maid and a temptress in the household of George Antrobus, played by Reed. Joan was not only delighted with the excellent reviews she received, but also that she had proved her RADA bosses wrong, in that she was a film star who could take the lead in a west end role.

Also in the film is Kay Kendall, who starred in Joan’s first film “Lady Godiva Rides Again.” She was eager to do more comedies but was cast in this under her Rank contract. She commented at the time: “It has ponderous dialogue. I had to wear pin cushion shaped costumes and a wig that made me look like Danny Kaye in drag!” Location shots were filmed at Waterloo Station. “The Square Ring” is classic British movie making with a cast of familiar faces, including Carry On favourites Sidney James and Joan Sims and is made in the true Ealing tradition.

© 2010 Mark McMorrow

Monday, February 22, 2010

Cosh Boy, AKA The Slasher

From Lippert Pictures
COSH BOY (a.k.a. The Slasher)

Starring Joan Collins as Rene Collins. James Kenney as Roy Walsh. Robert Ayres as Bob Stevens. Betty Ann Davies as Elsie Walsh. Hermione Baddeley as Mrs Collins. Hermione Gingold as Queenie. Nancy Roberts as Gran Walsh. Laurence Naismith as Inspector Donaldson. Johnny Briggs as Skinny. Ian Whittaker as Alfie. Sidney James as Police

Director of Photography - Jack Asher. Art Director- Bernard Robinson. Music Composed by Lambert Williamson. Edited by Charles Hasse. Screenplay by Lewis Gilbert & Vernon Harris from the stage play “Master Crook” by Bruce Walker. Assistant Dir- John Bremer. Production Supervisor- Anthony Nelson Keys. Produced by Daniel M. Angel. Directed by Lewis Gilbert.

A series of attacks on women of a certain age, are all masterminded by a troublesome teen by the name of Roy Walsh. Roy can't keep out of trouble and sets his eyes on Rene, a young virgin. Soon after a forced liaison, Rene becomes pregnant, Roy rejects her pleas for help and she attempts suicide! Roy’s mother remarries and his new step dad is determined to teach him a lesson he will never forget. That’s if Rene’s battle-axe of a mother doesn’t get her hands on him first! Cosh Boy, the first British X Certificate movie!!

© 1953 ROMULUS 73 Mins B/W

Made in 1953, Cosh Boy was adapted from the play “Master Crook “ by Bruce Walker, which also starred James Kenney who plays the main villian in the film. The film was released around the same time as the notorious court case of Derek Bentley, the young backward boy hanged for the murder of a policeman, partly because his accomplice Christopher Craig, was too young to hang. Cosh Boy has similarities in that the character of Alfie is simple and takes the blame for the crimes committed by main thug, Roy. The similarities were picked up on by the film censors of the time as they awarded the film the first of the new X Certificate. They also softened some of the coshing scenes as they were strong content for its time.

The Sunday Graphic commented: I don’t remember such an outcry when it was played on the London stage. I suppose they assume that theatre-goers are far steadier fellows than the film public!

The film was shot at Riverside Studios and Hammersmith, and Joan played another of her teen- gone-bad roles, although the character of Rene is more virginal than in other of her Coffee Bar Jezebel roles. Rene although fond of a good time, either at the local dance club or a day out on the river, still manages to convey an innocence which is apparent when she is ambushed into a sexual situation with the ruffian Roy. Joan looks stunning in the film and brings a touch of youthful glamour to a drab looking London! Incidentally Hermione Baddeley plays Joan’s mother in the film, a real battle-axe, who Joan herself had a run in with. Hermione who lived with Joan’s old RADA mate Laurence Harvey, didn’t take kindly to young attractive actresses and told Joan to her face “ So! This is the new Jean Simmons! Let me tell you, my dear, Jean has nothing to worry about! You don’t have her looks! You don’t have her talent! And you certainly don’t have half the things the papers have been saying about you!” Hermione obviously typecast as she plays a ferocious old harridan in this film.

Hermione Gingold also appears as the dotty Hooker Queenie, and she also appears in Joan’s later film “Our Girl Friday.” James Kenney later turns up in “The Good Die Young,” while Laurence Naismith appears with Joan in later productions, “Quest for Love,” “The Persuaders” and he also appeared in “I Believe In You” as did Sidney James, who also turns up here. More recently the British Film Institute put Cosh Boy on the shortlist for it’s 100 Greatest Films of All Time. Cosh Boy is influenced by Italian neo-realist films such as “Bicycle Thieves." It also has the distinction of been banned in Sweden and Birmingham! While not as shocking today as it seemed in the fifties, it still was a film ahead of its time and deserves it place in British film history.

© 2009 Mark Mc Morrow

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Turn the Key Softly

The Rank Organization


A Maurice Cowan Production


Starring: Yvonne Mitchell as Monica Marsden, Joan Collins as Stella Jarvis

Kathleen Harrison as Mrs. Quilliam, Terence Morgan as David, Thora Hird as Landlady, Dorothy Allison as Joan, Glyn Houston as Bob, Geoffrey Keen as Gregory, Russell Waters as Jenkin, and Clive Morton as Walters.

Screenplay by Jack Lee & Maurice Cowan. From a novel by John Brophy. Music by Mischa Spollansky. Director of Photography, Geoffrey Unsworth. Produced by Maurice Cowan. Directed by Jack Lee

Three very different women are released from prison at the same time. Monica imprisoned for a crime the man she loved committed. Stella fond of men and what they can give her! Mrs. Quilliam old enough to know better, but with a petty shoplifting record and a hungry mouth to feed. Over the twelve hours following their release, they must face many temptations that may see them back behind prison walls. They must thread carefully and try to Turn The Key Softly!

© 1953 Rank. 81 Mins B/W REG 0 DVD AMCO.

“Turn the Key Softly” is another of Joan’s films that casts her as a wayward woman. Joan plays a West End prostitute who is trying to get out of the profession to marry her bus driver boyfriend Bob and move to Cannenbury. Shot on location in London in the middle of winter, Joan spent her days freezing in her far-from-winter wardrobe. She had to wear the traditional tarts outfit of tight black satin skirt, with a flimsy low-cut lurex sweater. She then had to go home exhausted and attempt to cook dinner for her then husband Maxwell Reed, who’s raging moods and occasional episodes of flinging her less-than-gourmet cooking at the walls of their Mayfair flat, not to mention having to share it with Max’s pet monkey! But she was beginning to get noticed by the press, who were featuring her so often that she was crowned Miss Press Clippings of 1952 and accepted her award by the Hollywood actor Forrest Tucker. One press photo used to publicise “Turn the Key Softly” showed so much cleavage that the paper got letters of outrage. Joan was still unhappy with her roles, as she continued to get the “Coffee Bar Jezebel” parts. She had auditioned for the role of Monica that finally went to Yvonne Mitchell, but had to settle for the part of Stella. The film’s opening scenes were shot on location in Holloway’s women’s prison. The film has very likeable characters and show’s a slice of London life in a bygone era.

The film received good reviews, including from The New York Times:

“Turn The Key Softly,” is pointedly realistic of its examination of the short courses of the lives of three ladies of varying degrees, after they have left London’s Holloway prison. While not precisely on a heroic scale, the producers have endowed the proceedings with compassion, sensitivity and a modicum of irony. Credit Jack Lee, the director and Maurice Cowan, the producer, who also collaborated on the script, with keeping their heroines on the move, without snarling the traffic in tales. Joan Collins is properly lush and brassy as the cockney charmer who almost, but not quite, reverts to her gay way of life!”

© 2010 Mark McMorrow

Sunday, January 31, 2010


Eros Films


An RKO Pictures Release


Starring: Joan Fontaine as Fiametta, Bartolomea, Ginevra, Isabella; Louis Jourdan as Boccaccio, Paganino, Guilio, Bertrando; and Joan Collins as Pampinea, Maria.

Binnie Barnes as Contessa, Countess of Florence, Witch; Godfrey Tearle as Ricciado, Bernabo; Elliot Makeham as Govenor of Majorca; Noel Purcell as Father Francisco; Marjorie Rhodes as Signora Bucca; Stella Riley, Mara Lane, and Melissa Stribling as Three Girls in the Villa.

Screenplay by George Oppenheimer Based on a treatment by Geza Herczeg. Edited by Russell Lloyd. Director of Photography - Guy Green B.S.C. Music by Anthony Hopkins, Associate Producer Montagu Mar

ks. Produced by M.J. Frankovich & William Szekely. Directed by Hugo Fregonese

Giovanni Boccaccio’s bawdy tales brought to the screen in 50’s Technicolor! Louis Jourdan plays Boccaccio who tells three tales to try and woo his love, Fiametta. “Paganino The Pirate,” tells of a young wife, married to a much older man who teaches her inattentive husband a lesson! “Wager On Virtue,” features an elderly merchant who believes his young wife is cheating on him. “The Doctors Daughter,” when Bertrando saves the life of a female doctor, Isabella, she falls in love with him and by orders of the king, he has to marry her! The love tales that millions have enjoyed are all in Decameron nights!

Buy now on DVD by clicking here! © 1953 RKO 94MINS TECHNICOLOR

Released in 1953, this was Joan’s first American produced film, shot on location in Madrid and Segovia, the film took two years to plan and research. Publicity cited the film as having a cast of 2,200! The Spanish government loaned the makers an exact replica of the “Santa Maria,” Christopher Columbus’ famous vessel used in his voyage to discover America. The film’s co-star Binnie Barnes, married to the producer Mike Frankovich, also served as assistant producer on the film. In fifties Spain, items like makeup, eyelashes, lipstick brushes and hair glue for wigs, were very scarce. Binnie made several round trips from various Spanish locations to London to pick up such items! Joan recalled that the director Hugo Fregonese was a cold man and had no great feeling for his cast. Fregonese’s wife, the fifties star Faith Domerque acted as one of nine interpreters on the internationally cast film. According to Joan, the hotel in which the cast resided during the shoot, resembled a doss house and she recalled that Segovia was filthy. Joan later referred to her role as “A mischievous minx of a lady in waiting.”

Gossip at the time claimed that Joan was almost arrested for wearing tight jeans on the street in Spain! How times have changed! Incidently, Joan Fontaine later starred with Joan in “Island in the Sun”, and co-star Godfrey Tearle played Mr. Dove in Joan’s previous film “I Believe in You.” Decameron Nights probably seemed bawdy at the time of it’s release, viewed today it is very tame with some good locations and photography and a good cast.

Joan plays two roles in the film, like many of the main cast. Her main role as the young Pampinea, who has designs on the older Boccacio, who only has eyes for Fiametta. Joan is eager in the role and conveys both innocence and sultriness. The bulk of the film’s running time is concerned with the three tales told by Boccaccio and Fiametta, and as always everything has a happy ending!

Bosley Crowther of the New York Times reviewed the film 1953:

Even though M.J. Frankovich and William Szekely, dared at least to rush in where other film-makers have feared to tread, by taking the bawdy tales of Italian courtier, Boccaccio and making a motion picture that would vaguely embrace the salty themes of marital discontent and indiscretion, contained in the great “Decameron”. This big Technicolor panorama, is a tame and generally witless trifling with the materials of naughtiness, lacking completely the vitality and the trenchant comments of the original. Jourdan’s performance consists almost entirely in looking handsome and roguish in bright costumes, while Fontaine behaves all coquettish and throwing lady-like leers. Binnie Barnes, whips about without any point or purpose and Joan Collins and Godfrey Tearle are present in lesser roles.

© 2010 Mark McMorrow

Sunday, January 24, 2010




An Ealing Studios Film


Starring: Celia Johnson as Miss Mattie; Cecil Parker as Mr. Phipps;Godfrey Tearle; Harry Fowler; George Relph; Laurence Harvey; Ada Reeves; Ursula Howells Sidney James; Gladys Henson; Ernest Jay; and Katie Johnson

And Joan Collins as Norma Hart

Screenplay by Jack Whittingham / Michael Ralph / Basil Dearden; From the novel “ Court Circular” by Sewell Stokes; Music by Ernest Irving Dir of Photography - Gordon Dines; Produced and Directed by Michael Ralph & Basil Dearden.

Mr. Phipps (Parker) is enjoying a quiet life when trouble lands on his doorstep. Norma Hart (Joan), a wayward teenager on probation is involved in a robbery that ends in a joy ride crash. She seeks refuge in his building, and he takes her in. Phipps calls her probation officer Miss Matteson (Johnson) and thus begins his interests in the profession. Phipps takes on the job of probation officer and begins to see the other side of London life. He becomes friendly with Miss Matteson, and both their charges Norma and Hooker (Fowler), become romantically involved and vow to go straight and get married. After a series of events that almost sees them both back in court, they manage to keep out of trouble with the help of Phipps and Mattie and stay on course for marriage. "I Believe In You": Where a little guidance goes a long way. Where the older are certainly the wiser!


This was Joan’s first major role, and she had to do three screen tests before finally receiving a telegram while on holiday in Cannes, telling her she had won the part. Joan recalled that costumes for the film were found whilst trawling around London’s east end second hand shops! Joan earned £30 a week for her eight week shoot in the role as Norma.

The critics gave Joan strong reviews:

Jympson Harmon, wrote:

Joan Collins makes a tremendous impression as the wayward girl. She has a dark, luscious kind of beauty, which puts her in the Jane Russell class, but Joan already seems to be an actress of greater ability. On the showing of this first big film part, she looks like the most impressive recruit in British films for many a moon!

News Of The World raved:

A dozen of my darkest red roses to Joan Collins! Fire and spirit in her acting and that odd combination of allure and mystery that spells eventual world stardom!

After completing the film, Joan appeared in several plays including "The Seventh Veil"and "Jassy" with her soon-to-be husband, Maxwell Reed. Other plays included "Claudia and David" and "The Skin of Our Teeth." After the success of the film, Joan was signed to a five year contract with Rank.

Variety said of Joan:

Joan Collins turns in a strong dramatic performance.

The film is filled with weird and wonderful characters and familiar British film favourites, including Sidney James and Ursula Howells. Joan plays the part of Norma with both defiance and innocence. The role is similar to that of Lil in "Judgment Deferred" and later Stella in "Turn the Key Softly," and Rene in "Cosh Boy." Thus earning her the label of "Coffee Bar Jezebel" and "Britain’s Bad Girl."

One of her co-stars in the film is Laurence Harvey, one of Joan’s best friends off set who later appeared with her in "The Good Die Young."

A New York Times review from 1952 read:

I Believe In You is a largely placid resemblance of things past, but it shines with understanding and is a warm and adult adventure, which pins deserving medals on unsung heroes, without heroics.

Joan Collins, a comparative newcomer, is pretty and provocative as the fiery Norma, who finds in her a healthy love for Hooker, the answer to her problems. Although it rarely becomes impassioned, the film is a credible, satisfying and illuminating view of what generally is a dark scene! Nevertheless, viewed today it is still an enjoyable slice of a bygone day!

The film's star, Celia Johnson, was nominated for a BAFTA award for her performance as Best Actress in a leading role. But, the award went to Vivien Leigh for A Streetcar Named Desire.

© 2010 Mark Mc Morrow

Sunday, January 17, 2010


A.B.F.D Productions
From Group 3
An Associated British Release


Starring: Hugh Sinclair as David Kennedy; Helen Shingler as Kay Kennedy; and Joan Collins as Lil Carter; With: Abraham Sofaer; Leslie Dwyer; Harry Locke; Elwyn Brook Jones; Wilfrid Walter; Marie O’Neill; Bransby Williams; and Bud Flanagan; Directed by John Baxter

Robert Carter is convicted of drug trafficking and sentenced to imprisonment. A group of his eccentric associates vow to bring the head of the dope smuggling ring Coxon who framed Carter, to justice. After Carter escapes from prison they manage to convince Lil (Joan Collins), Carter’s wayward daughter, who was romantically involved with Coxon, to help them. A reporter David Kennedy interrupts his holiday to cover the story and goes undercover to infiltrate Carter’s band of down and out friends who are holed up in a shelter for the homeless founded by Carter. David agrees to help them trap the criminals and prove Carter’s innocence. Will Coxon get his comeuppance? Will Carter be reunited with daughter Lil? Will Kennedy's wife Kay ever forgive him for ruining her holiday? Find out in Judgment Deferred!!

©1951 Group 3 Productions 88 Mins B/W

Judgment Deferred was originally made in 1933 under the title “Doss House” by the same director Baxter. This was Joan Collin’s third movie following “The Woman’s Angle.” Before shooting this film, Joan screen tested for the part of Alan Ladd’s girlfriend in a film called “The Red Beret.” The role eventually went to Susan Stephen whose career fizzled out in the late fifties after she married director Nicolas Roeg. At this time Joan also did a test with heart throb Dirk Bogarde. Judgment Deferred was shot at South-hall Studios. The script described Joan’s character Lil, as“ A once beautiful girl fallen on hard times through drink, drugs and deprivation!" Publicity cited the role as, “An exciting and emotional role of a one time beautiful girl, a convicts daughter, ruined by the colourful and dangerous crowd in which she has sought pleasure." The Evening News ran a review which said ,“Although so young for her emotional role, Joan Collins comes through with flying colours.” PRESS RELEASE!! “ Brilliant New Screen Discovery!!” When two such veterans of the film industry as John Baxter and Bill Watts (Joan’s first agent), think they have discovered a future star, then its something to talk about! Joan Collins is the girl!

Viewed today, “Judgment Deferred” is an unusual film, with it’s strange array of characters and it’s drug trafficking plotline, which may have seemed almost seedy in the fifties. Joan plays the role of Lil Carter with a mix of streetwise goodtime girl and a naïve teenager. We first see her decked in furs and all made up as she is the criminal Coxons girlfriend. But later when he no longer wants her, she turns up the worse for wear minus the furs and caked in dirt rather than max factor! Joan is wonderful in the small but important role of an naïve girl who becomes smitten by a user! It was the first of many roles for Joan where she played wayward girls, who always seems to get mixed up with the wrong types. Leslie Dwyer who plays the go between flowers, also turns up in another of Joan’s 50’s films, “The Good Die Young”. While actor Harry Locke who plays Bert, also turns up in “Subterfuge” and the classic terror film “Tales from the Crypt”. (All of which we will cover in future articles for the Joan Collins Fan Club).

© 2010 Mark McMorrow

Thursday, January 14, 2010


KENNETH BRANAGH's proudest moment as a filmmaker came at the screening of his low-budget movie IN THE BLEAK MIDWINTER - when he handed glamorous actress JOAN COLLINS a cheque for her role in the film.

The thespian wrote and directed the black and white picture, about an amateur theatre group attempting to stage Hamlet at Christmas, in 1995, and paid for the movie himself with the revenue he had recouped from his big screen take of Frankenstein. After selling the low-budget movie to a studio at a profit, Branagh decided to share out the wealth with his cast and crew in an unconventional way - by handing out pay cheques at the film's screening.

Sunday, January 10, 2010


Associated British Pictures Corp LTD
Presents a Leslie Arliss-Bow Bells Production

Starring Cathy O’Donnell, Lois Maxwell, Claude Farell, and Edward Underdown. With Peter Reynolds, Marjorie Fielding, Isabel Dean, Anthony Nicholls, John Bentley, and Olaf Poole

and Joan Collins as Marina

Screenplay by Leslie Arliss. Ad
apted by Diana Morgan. Music by Robert Gill & Mabbie Poole Produced by Walter Mycroft. Director of Photography: Erwin Hillier. Directed by Leslie Arliss.

Robert Mansell is seeking a divorce from his wife Enid. During the divorce proceedings and a series of flashbacks, we discover that Robert has had dalliances with two other women. Nina a woman he met while on a vacation at a ski resort with his mistress Delsya, a famous ballerina. Will Enid give Robert his divorce? Will Delsya insist he go off with her? Will Nina finally get her man? Find out in “The Woman’s Angle”. See Joan Collins as a Greek maid!

The Woman’s Angle made in 1952 was Joan's second film appearance. While she gets a little more screen time than in the previous years “Lady Godiva Rides Again,” she still gets no dialogue. She plays the part of an overworked girl named Marina who lives on a Greek island with her father Stefano, who owns an inn/hotel. She can be seen running in and out of the inn at her fathers beck and call. Marina seems to be the only help her father has on the island and even has to carry the guests heavy luggage! Even though Joan has no dialogue, her fleeting appearance shows a fiery spark and vitality and it makes you want to see more of her. The film as a whole is typical fifties British movie making. The plot a bit risqué for fifties audiences with its themes of divorces and affairs. The flimsy plot dressed up with a romantic series of flashbacks linked by a divorce court hearing scenario.

Viewed today, it is ideal Saturday matinee fodder. It’s only redeeming feature for us is an early glimpse of Joan who we now know went on to greater things and a fabulous, enduring career. The same can't be said of the other members of the cast, apart from Lois Maxwell, who will be forever associated with her role of Miss Moneypenny in the iconic James Bond movie series. Joan was paid fifty pounds for her two day stint at Elstree studios. On it’s release in the USA in 1954, it was slated by NY Times critic, Bosley Crowther, who wrote.“ The Woman’s Angle, a baffling little British exercise on the subject of masculine behaviour. It is also a mildly vexing picture, a grim little sample of bad writing, bad acting and bad directing all around”. © 1952 ABP LTD.

© 2010 Mark Mc Morrow

Monday, January 4, 2010


British Lion Presents
A London Films Release

Directed by Frank Launder; Photographed by Wilkie Cooper Music by William Alwyn; Written by Frank Launder & Val Valentine.

Introducing: Joan Collins as Beauty Contestant

Small town girl makes good! When Marjorie Clarke, a small town waitress, enters a contest to find Lady Godiva for a town festival, little does she know the fate that awaits her! After winning the title and representing her town in the festival of Britain, she is soon spotted by a rep from Fascination soap. She is persuaded to enter the Miss Fascination beauty contest. After winning, she enters the world of films, but all is not as glamorous as it appears. After a series of mishaps, Margorie falls on hard times and has to resort to stripping in a theatre revue. Will Marjorie be rescued in time to redeem her modesty? Laughter and tears, and an early glimpse of Joan Collins, are all uncovered in Lady Godiva Rides Again!

Made in 1951 and produced by the legendary British duo of Sydney Gilliat and Frank Launder, “Lady Godiva Rides Again” is classic British movie making in the Ealing tradition. It was also directed by Frank Launder and features many familiar faces including Dora Bryan and Sidney James alongside future stars Jean Marsh Dana Wynter and, of course, Joan Collins! Even though the film’s leading lady Pauline Strouds career in movies sank into oblivion, its lesser featured lady Joan Collins went on to a lengthy career and an entertainment legend!

Joan Collins plays the small role of a beauty contest finalist.
Her one line seen but not heard as she waits in the lobby
of the hotel with other contestants. Joan's work schedule for
the film was all but three days spent freezing in a bathing suit at Leas Cliff town hall in Folkestone by the sea. Four hundred of the local townspeople were recruited as extras in the Beauty Contest scenes.

The film also features another British movie legend Diana Dors as Dolores August who has a string of beauty titles and by hook or by crook, plans to land the title of Miss Fascination (usually by crook). In the film Diana has to wear some revealing bikinis, which would have been too racy for the American film censors at the time. For the export prints of the film, they had to shoot extras shots with Diana and the other girls in less revealing outfits. The film’s star Pauline Stroud was not too keen on her costumes and commented to the press: “I shall be glad when this is over! I dislike parading in a swimsuit!” The beauty parade scenes took six hours to shoot with Diana along with Jean Marsh, Simone Silva and Joan Collins, parading up and down the studio pre-fabricated stairs. The tabloid newspapers of the time likened the casting of the female lead as similar to the hunt for Scarlet O’Hara! No wonder Pauline Strouds career was Gone With The Wind!

© 2009 Mark McMorrow

Sunday, January 3, 2010


Hello fellow fans! I am so delighted to be able to share my admiration and appreciation for the career and our living legend: Joan Collins. I do hope you enjoy reading my brand new weekly column on the Joan Collins Fan Club Blog. I will cover, in time, all of Joan’s film roles and later on her TV guest appearances, of which there are many. Starting off with her first film “Lady Godiva Rides Again”, up to at present “Banksy’s Coming to Dinner.”

I am proud to have been a fan of Joan’s since the late 70’s, before the advent of “Dynasty.” Whilst many fans have savoured her role as the eternally glamorous--if not treacherous--Alexis Carrington, I have enjoyed all her varied film roles and television work. My parents were fans of Joan’s as they enjoyed her in her films from the 50’s to the 70’s and have memories of going to the cinema with them to see the epic “Empire of the Ants.” When Joan joined “Dynasty,” I was fully aware of her as an actress and became an even bigger admirer. It was after meeting her for the first time in 1989, (when she came to Dublin for a book signing, for her first novel “Prime Time”), that I began collecting clippings and her books and eventually all her films and TV work, followed by hundreds of photos and memorabilia of all kinds connected with her many ventures.

Hopefully over time I can share many of them with you all! I am so glad that we have a new Official Joan Collins Fan Club and that Joan continues to keep active in her career and remains as vital and as busy as ever in this fickle world of entertainment.

Hope you all enjoy the blog and have a great 2010!

Best Wishes,

Mark McMorrow, Ireland

Saturday, January 2, 2010


Dear Fans,

I'm pleased to announce the launch of the Official Joan Collins Fan Club Blog. We hope, foremost, that you'll find this blog a place where you can come to learn more about Joan Collins' incredible work in film and television. I'm delighted, especially, that Mark McMorrow -- a long-time fan and friend of Ms. Collins -- is graciously offering his time and talents to write a weekly column for the blog that will share an insightful retrospective of our living legend's phenomenal career from the 1950s to present. Thank you, Mark!

Please do become a follower of the blog, feel free to post comments, and invite others to join the community of fans.

For news from Joan Collins, you can always visit the Official Joan Collins Website at: www.joancollins.net.

John Williams
Joan Collins Fan Club President

Friday, January 1, 2010


By now, the squillions of you website visitors all know that Joan Collins in Glamour Land is home of the Official Joan Collins Fan Club. But, what are the right words to describe the architects behind the highly popular virtual world of Joan Collins in Glamour Land? Fashion mavens? PR gurus? Cartoon-world geniuses? How about we officially introduce ourselves:

Jennifer Jacobs: Jennifer is wearing a posh ensemble directly off the runway of New York's hot Phi collection by Andreas Melbostad. Her super powers include: fashion and design.

John Williams, Fan Club President: John is dressed in a timeless baby-blue seersucker suit by Cantarelli for Bergdorf Goodman. His super powers include: martinis, very dry.

If you have any questions about the Fan Club, pop over to Glamour Land and send us an email message!