Posted by mshetina 2010-08-04 03:11:22
I just rewatched Seance on a Wet Afternoon, the brilliant psychological thriller by Brian Forbes - a true master of that genre - and I was struck again by the understated brilliance of Richard Attenborough and particularly, Kim Stanley's incredibly taut performance. I've been fascinated by her ever since first seeing the film in high school, but outside of Seance, Frances and the fleeting glimpses of her Bus Stop performance in the Rick McKay documentary, it's difficult for those of us who came too late to see her really understand what she was like as a performer.
So, were any of you lucky enough to see her live? And I've heard mixed things about her recent biography, Female Brando. Recommended?
Posted by nobodyhome 2010-08-04 05:14:10
I do recommend Female Brando, despite its flaws.
Unfortunately, I never saw her live, but I always remember Austin Pendleton describing her as the greatest actress he'd ever seen. It's too bad that there's relatively little of her extensive TV work on DVD.
If you haven't seen Dragon Country, available from Broadway Theatre Archive, I recommend it. When I was a young teenager, PBS used to show many things multiple times over months. I watched it again and again, fascinated by Stanley and William Redfield in I Can't Imagine Tomorrow. I had no idea at the time that she was considered by many the greatest actress of her time.
Posted by Borstalboy 2010-08-04 12:47:43
I'm too young to have seen Kim Stanley on stage, but I have seen a considerable amount of her film and TV work. Her acting guru was Lee Strasberg whose approach to "the Method" is now considered by most to be quite passe.
Stanley is the very avatar of Strasberg's method in good and bad ways. Concentrated, emotional and deeply powerful but also tic-y and self-hypnotized...she doesn't really seem to be acting with anyone else in the room. Anyone interested in acting should check out the very entertaining SEANCE ON A WET AFTERNOON and also her performance Paddy Chayevsky's THE GODDESS and as Jessica Lange's mom in FRANCES.
Posted by Popular 2010-08-04 13:06:57
I was in the TV version of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof with her back in '85. Lovely woman!
Posted by CurtainPullDowner 2010-08-04 14:38:11
Were you a no-necked monster??????
Posted by Popular 2010-08-04 14:39:22
Posted by CurtainPullDowner 2010-08-04 14:45:19
Posted by MTVMANN 2010-08-04 14:46:35
I watched that version two weeks ago! Did you get to yell "You're just Jealous cause you can't have babies"?
Posted by Borstalboy 2010-08-04 14:47:40
Wow! Color me impressed!
Posted by Popular 2010-08-04 15:02:02
No, that was Ami Foster who said that. She later when on to play Margaux on Punky Brewster. I was so jealous!! haha
Posted by MTVMANN 2010-08-04 15:09:02
I remember her...She was also in "Troop Beverly Hills" and this video for the Wrinkles Dogs called "Wrinkles in need of Cuddles"...which I got because I loved my Wrinkles dogs.
But...while watching her say that line in your "Cat", I didn't like it as much the little girl who said it to Elizabeth Taylor!
Posted by mshetina 2010-08-05 00:44:13
Thanks for the recommendations. The Dragon Country DVD intrigues me because I thought she had entirely given up stage acting by that point. And The Goddess is hard to find and it always shows up on TV when I'm either away at school or at five in the morning.
Posted by fanof many 2010-08-05 01:28:04
I yoo am abit too young to have been around to see Kim Stanley on the stage. But years ago I read an article about her and I could not wait to see "The Goddess"- I was probably 14 at the time, and it was on tv very late, or rather, very early. I was so afraid my parents would catch me up on a school night. But seeing that film and that performance, I knew I had witnessed one of the finest perfomances captured on film. I couldn't forget it and I read everything I could about her- and I guess I've seen everything she did that is available on tape. If you want to see something interesting, go to the Internet Movie Database, and watch the episode of "The Night Gallery" that she did- titled "A Fear of Spiders" in the 1970's- here's the link:
To me, her finest moment in "The Goddess" is this one, from YouTube:
I have just recently read "Female Brando"- I found it very interesting- I would recommend it. I only wish more of her friends, co-workers, acquaintances, ex-husbands, etc. had been alive to have been interviewed.
Posted by nobodyhome 2010-08-05 02:42:39
She had given up stage acting by the time of Dragon Country, although she always flirted with coming back. In fact, when I heard Austin Pendleton describe her as the greatest actor he'd ever seen, it was in 1980, and he said there was a possibility that he'd be doing The Seagull with her. Of course, they'd both have been way too old for those roles by that point. So she still at least flirted with coming back.
Dragon Country was just done for TV, she hadn't done it onstage. In fact, according to Krampner's book, she never really knew her lines (she had trouble learning lines by that point), and I think he says there were cue cards for her.
Doesn't matter, she's mesmerizing.
Posted by logan2 2010-08-05 07:36:43
Stanley's Emmy winning performance in A Cardinal Act of Mercy can be seen on "the tube". She plays an accomplished lawyer who shoots dope and she is mesmerizing. More rare Stanley is coming soon - same bat-time, same bat-channel.
Posted by Gypsy9 2010-08-05 07:45:26
I have a feeling that I did see Kim Stanley on stage but I can't remember the play, or plays. The discussion so far has centered on her film and television work. Can anyone list the plays that she was in?
Posted by logan2 2010-08-05 07:53:16
Kim Stanley performed in The House of Bernarda Alba, The Chase, Picnic, The Traveling Lady, Bus Stop, A Clearing in the Woods, A Touch of the Poet, Cheri, A Far Country, Natural Affection, and The Three Sisters.
Posted by bryan2 2010-08-05 09:58:30
To see the amazing Kim Stanley on film ..see FRANCIS
one of the best acted films of the 80s..she is amazing as
Francis Farmers mom..a horrible human being ...but always
captivating on the screen..the woman was the best of the best
Posted by Ed_Mottershead 2010-08-05 13:27:02
I did have the very good fortune to see Stanley in the Actors Studio Three Sisters. She had the ability to transfix an audience, even though she was facing upstage and rather non-chalantly turning the pages of a book the character was reading. By doing nothing, she outshone everyone else on stage -- which included Geraldine Page, Shirley Knight, Barbara Baxley, et. al. I'll never forget her bemused comment in the 3rd Act after Natasha (the Baxley role) has stormed across the stage, working herself up into a furore. Stanley's quiet comment was "Did she start the fire?" and it spoke mountains. Her life must have been a real mess but she was transcendent on stage. I feel priveleged to have had the opportunity to have seen her and pray that her spirit is finally at rest.
Posted by uncageg 2010-08-05 14:02:47
Just caught the last half of "Frances" about a month ago on cable. Didn't know that was her playing the mother. She was quite good in the movie.
Posted by nobodyhome 2010-08-05 17:45:30
I'm glad that "A Cardinal Act of Mercy" is back on youtube. It was taken down for a while. It's something everyone who wants to see great acting should watch. Thanks for mentioning it, Logan2.
Posted by logan2 2010-08-05 22:26:10
Your totally welcome nobodyhome. The Traveling Lady, Tomorrow, A Young Lady of Property (with Joanne Woodward), and The Three Sisters will pop up again soon. I just wish there was more Stanley to share.
Posted by nobodyhome 2010-08-05 23:02:44
Great. I will have to look out for them. Good to know that copies of them are out there.
Posted by David Moon2 2010-08-11 16:00:53
Kim Stanley also appeared in an episode of QUINCY, M.E. that you can watch on NetFlix (Season 8, episode entitled "Beyond the Open Door").
Posted by daredevil 2010-08-11 20:02:12
I saw her in Touch of the Poet, A Far Country and The Three Sisters. She had a great sense of exhuberance about her, very passionate. When I remember the Three Sisters production, I think of her in tandem with Geraldine Page (Olga) and Shirley Knight (Irina). The three of them worked beutifully together.
Posted by MrMidwest 2012-07-24 14:33:07
Posted by MrMidwest 2012-08-12 14:12:37
Kim Stanley VERY LONG POST
Posted by 3bluenight 2012-08-12 15:53:02
I tried to find the link, but this is an older piece i have had for a while. I must give a shout out to Rick Mckay for introducing me to Kim Stanley, but after, i watched and found most of her available filmed work (either on ebay or the tube).
She was indeed one of the most fascinating actors i've ever seen.
Below is the complete text.
Book Reviews: Kim Stanley: American theatre's forgotten genius
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Although I always knew this day would come, it is difficult to imagine
the world of acting without at least the promise of Kim Stanley's presence.
America's greatest actor is gone (August, 2001).
I do not use the word "great" in regards to Kim as it is routinely used
today --as marketing hyperbole; I use it to mean exactly what the word says:
Greatness. Kim Stanley was the embodiment of greatness in acting and, more
importantly, in art. It is a damning comment on the current state of our
culture when the work of someone like Kim Stanley is virtually unknown. Maybe
I can change that.
Here is what Rex Reed had to say about Kim's work in a TV play in 1968:
"If for no other reason, see FLESH AND BLOOD for Kim Stanley's
devastating work as the mother. Touching her daughter's earring
with love in the middle of a speech, placing her hands over the
vegetable's ears when her husband raises his voice to curse, rubbing
an eye when somebody utters a truth she doesn't want to hear, and
listening -- always listening -- she is an actress for whom
adjectives become about as forceful as water dropping on gasoline.
No longer the darling Cheri of BUS STOP, her face is now a
roadmap of human suffering -- bags under her eyes, red streaks
in the eyeballs, lines in the chin. Where have you been, Miss
Stanley? The world has lamented the absence of your genius."
Then there is the director Tony Richardson's estimation of Kim's talent:
"Until now I had only worked with one great actress -- Edith Evans --
but in limited roles and in her declining years. Since then I've
been lucky enough to work with several -- each with her own
particular qualities. What they all shared -- despite their
ambitions, their egos, their vanities, all those things which
make and are even indispensable to being a "star" -- was an
absolute immersion of themselves in the work they were performing
and the reality they were creating. Once they understood something,
it was a total commitment. Vanessa [Redgrave] with her emotional
flow and understanding; Peggy [Ashcroft] with her authority; Edith
alternating between the highest style and the humblest humanity;
Jeanne Moreau with her precision, elegance, understanding of film
and how it works; Kate Hepburn with her feistiness and humor --
they were all unique and extraordinary. And then there was Kim.
Searching for an image to describe her overwhelming talent, I can
only come up with a bag lady. But her bag was life itself. Never,
before or since, have I worked with someone of such variety and
impact. ... If you had put Edith [Evans] and Kim on the same stage
and in the same play there would have been a difference in accents,
but in their access to the portrayal of life on stage they would
have been equal. All those technical necessities of any important
actress -- sense of stage, perfection of direction, awareness of
rhythms of both character and text, grace, ease, fluency: all
those things which Method actors, immersed in their own internal
conflicts and emotions, were supposedly deficient in -- Kim had
them all. Directing Kim was as if you'd been given a piano and
suddenly found you could play as well as Glenn Gould. She was like
Larry [Oliver] at his best, only more so. And her range of under-
standing of human and physical experience was endless. She could
play the same scene over and over again in a totally fresh way,
yet always respecting the others on stage with her, reacting to
and building on and up to everyone else's reactions and contri-
butions, and never distorting the pacing or truth of the play.
"Infinite variety" is totally applicable to Kim.
We opened the play in Washington. Vanessa [Redgrave] came out
to stay with me. She was equally in awe and admiring of Kim's
prodigious gifts. The cast included ... and a slightly catatonic
young actor, Gregory Rozakis, whose presence was effective but
whose impulses were so nonreactive that sometimes Kim would clap
her hands in his face to get even a blink. It was the only thing
she failed in. I have never worked on anything before or since
where rehearsals were such a sustained joy -- all because of Kim."
Kim Stanley's friend and original Group Theatre member Bobby Lewis had this to
say about her:
"For me, the most vivid memories of the production of CHERI will
always be centered around Kim Stanley. She was the most gifted
acting artist I ever worked with. She didn't need the usual
direction -- only a bit of editing here and there. "What you
do with the mirror in that spot is very good, Kim" I might say,
"but it's a little like what happens in the previous act." "All
right, I'll find something else," she'd agree. And she would. "I'll
find something" was her refrain all through rehearsals. By
"something" she not only meant a piece of "business" or a movement.
It could be a thought or a feeling -- some personal emotional
reference that would change a particular moment from something
understood to something experienced. This was her art. By the time
she was finished there wasn't a single passage in her performance
that didn't ring completely true.
Did I say finished? She was never finished. She worked creatively
on her part throughout the run until the closing night curtain fell.
Between matinee and evening shows, I'd find her stretched out on
a couch in her dressing room thinking about her part. "I've found
something for the moment where Cheri says to Lea so-and-so and so-
and-so." Kim would announce. "I'll try it tonight." Thus her
performances not only had the "quality of the first time," but they
Actors Studio historian Foster Hirsch wrote this about Kim's acting:
"The qualities Kristofer Batho perceives in Stanley as a teacher are
those that come through in her acting: a sensitivity so extraordinary
that it seems mystical; a luminous quietism; a privacy shadowed
by measureless sorrow. As a teacher and performer, Stanley is a
woman who sees; no wonder she's often been cast as mediums, pychics,
zealots, world-renowned actresses -- as people who have a special
knowledge or power."
David Garfield wrote in his history of the Studio that:
"Kim Stanley [is] regarded by many theatre people as the outstanding
American actress of her generation... ."
Harold Clurman once wrote:
"Kim Stanley and Marlon Brando act from their "gut" and their gut
is easily upset. ... Kim Stanley's idealistic thirst for
perfection -- impossible of realization -- on and off the stage,
is the source of the intense anguish and anger in her."
In his review of Horton Foote's THE TRAVELING LADY, Harold Clurman commented:
"Kim Stanley is the youngest addition to that line of American
actresses whose emblematic figures are Laurette Taylor and Pauline
Lord. They express the inarticulate but eloquent womanhood of those
who have never learned to become ladies. They seem out of step
with their environment. They have no "front," no bright armor, no
sheen of social glamor. They appear slightly damaged, incalculably
hurt, rich in basic human experience. Kim Stanley has amazing
naturalness; her speech is real communication instinct with the
unpredictable music and the ebb and flow of a genuine connection
with whoever is her partner on the stage. She rarely stiffens with
false theatrical projection. Her very presence seems to emanate
meaning. She is still far from the mastery which made Laurette
Taylor our unmatched example of that humane stagecraft in which
artist and person merge in magic integration. Yet if our theatre
and her will sustain her, it may be possible for Kim Stanley to
progress a long way toward that goal."
I cannot quote him, but the legendary critic Stark Young considered Kim
Stanley the American Duse -- and he had literally seen them all.
Kim Stanley is famous for the gut-wrenching emotional truth of her
acting, but one actually discovers the degree of human insight playing in her
imagination and her almost flawless craft by noticing the momentary and yet
illuminating details of behavior that so richly define her art.
Richard Kiley recalled just such a moment:
"Kim played my ex-wife in a play called "The Glass Wall." Her character
had had a
nervous breakdown seven years before and was totally out of it until a
miraculously brings her back. But in that time, I remarried, and while
character wants to get back together, it just can't happen.
On the day she is released I bring her to a motel, and I say,
need, call. We're going to get you back on your feet," and I kiss her on
head. She had some lines saying, "I'll call you," which we had rehearsed.
We get on the air, and when I go to give her this avuncular kiss she
around, and the tears are streaming down her cheeks. She doesn't say her
line. She just looks at me, and her eyes go to the bed and she comes back
me. Now, we're live [It's a 1950's live TV play]. This silence is
attenuating. I look
at her, and I start to fill up. We threw all the lines out and just stood
there, and I
just touched her face. I never did the little kiss. It grew into the most
kind of powerful unscripted moment, quite deliberately by her, but honest
I don't think she planned it. Kim was that kind of actress."
What kind of actress is Kiley talking about? Is he talking about the kind
that throws a weak text out on a whim just to indulge emotion and self? No.
Not at all. He is talking about a dramatic talent so in tune with human truth
and so deeply connected to the very reason the play was written that it
naturally goes to the core reality in any human situation or relationship.
Kim does not just "play moments." She does not waste her time trying to "be
in the moment." She is not a passive responder on stage only working off her
partner and the text. She is not an emotional striptease artist displaying
her neurosis. She is a doer of psycho/physical action. She motivates that
doing with personal emotional references that compel her into a state of
belief. She enters the imaginary reality of the play through the Magic If.
But most of all, she finds moments in the unfolding of the action where the
pycho/physical behavior she is creating, can, for all time, nail down the
reality and meaning of the beat, the scene, the character, the act and the
entire play. She is an actor of the "spine:" the crown jewel of the
Recently, I watched her in Horton Foote's early 1950's TV play THE YOUNG
LADY OF PROPERTY. In it, Kim plays a teenager whose family has all but
abandoned her, leaving her in the care of an aunt. Her character dreams of
going to Hollywood to be in the movies, and in the course of the play, is
almost taken in by a shady "talent scout." Along with this line of action,
there is another line that centers on the family home. Kim Stanley's
character believes that the house she once lived in with her family has been
left to her and a horrible fight breaks out when her father wants to sell it.
It is the only piece of her "family" Kim's character can still touch. Without
her understanding why, Kim's character sees this empty house as her place in
the world. After all has been settled and Kim's character wins, she turns to
her aunt and asks if she can go look at her house for a while before supper.
The aunt says, "Ok." In the script, Kim's character simply says to her aunt,
"I love you." and out she and her friend go. Kim turned this moment into a
realization for the character. She is about to run out the door after
receiving permission to go when she suddenly stops herself. Kim turns and
looks at her aunt, her real family and the only adult who has cared for her,
and we see Kim's character understand "family" and 'love" for the first time.
With the effect of this realization filling her emotionally and mentally, Kim
says, "I love you." In that instant, Kim Stanley nails the spine of the play
to the stage. The moment Kim finds is the very moment for which the play was
written. Kim makes the meaning of her character and the play clear for all
who care to look closely enough to see.
Many people are not aware of it, but Kim Stanley provides the
voiceover narration for the unseen adult "Scout" in the film of TO KILL A
MOCKINGBIRD. Kim received no billing as she did it as a favor for her friends
Horton Foote and the director Robert Mulligan. For anyone who has seen this
fine film, the absolute naturalness and rural warmth of Kim's voice helps to
make the depiction of life in Macon, Georgia in the 1930's seem stunningly
real. But Kim does much more than simply set the scene. Doing narration,
where she is not even seen, Kim Stanley finds the moment when she can
illuminate the experiential meaning of the material. At the end of the film,
Kim's character recalls the events of that long ago summer when so much
happened in the young Scout's life. The dialogue lists the momentos and
memories of the time. The last thing Kim says concerns Boo Radley. While
experiencing the deepest gratitude, Kim does a simple verbal action, she
thanks Boo with the words, "and our lives." There is a pause within this
moment that says it all. Harper Lee's novel is written from a feeling of deep
gratitude for her father, embodied in the character of Atticus Finch. It is a
long "Thank You" to Atticus for being the kind of man he was. Kim -- with
just three words and a living understanding of the material's theme, gives
her audience the emotional spine of the story -- gratitude -- "Stand up,
Scout, your father is passing" -- and we never even see her.
When Kim guest starred on rather silly TV shows, she would alter the
entire mood of the piece just by the spiritual weight of her presence and the
articulate truth of her craft.
In an episode of Jack Klugman's Quincy MD Kim played a physic who aided
the police in solving a serial killer's murders. There was a scene where she
and Klugman were sitting in the kitchen discussing the case. Kim's character
was cooking muffins, although this was hardly the focus of the scene. For
some reason, which I cannot remember, something happened to draw them away
from the kitchen. There was no line telling Kim to check the muffins in the
oven and almost any other actor would have forgotten them and just left the
room. Not Kim. For a brief second she turned to look through the oven door at
her muffins, making sure they would not immediately burn if she left for a
second. The moment wasn't in the script. The director didn't tell Kim to do
it. There wasn't even a shot of the oven. It was just the genius of truth
that this great actor brought to the must mundane of acting situations.
In an episode of a early 80's Patty Duke series, Kim played an
immigrant Irish mother who came to see Duke's prosecuting attorney character
in the hopes of saving her son who was on trial for murder. Now this series
was a sit-com, although more in the vein of All In The Family than Seinfeld,
but with Kim's scene it became drama. Kim's character was uneducated and had
no idea how to conduct herself in a professional manner. All she knew was
that she had to save her child. Kim played that hope to the bitter end.
Duke's character rejected all her pleas. Finally, Kim fell silent and got up
to leave. She walked to the door and then turned. She began telling a story
in one last attempt to gain mercy for her boy. She saw that Duke wasn't
listening. Kim's voice trailed off and she allowed her character to simply
stare at Duke with the face of a mother's anger. In this all too brief scene,
Kim had shown what it is to honestly and completely DO an action: to save my
boy. Few actors play actions. They think they do but most actors use the idea
of actions to convince themselves that their line readings are real acting.
Kim was an object lesson in "completing an action" in this beautiful little
The few critics Kim's acting has had always point to what they consider
her indulgent emotional outbursts. They see the depth of her emotional
expression as little more than a neurotic woman showing off her tears. These
critics misread Kim's art because, few, if any, possess a working
understanding of the inner structure of acting: a deeply felt spine branching
out into the actions of the character. When one looks at Kim's work from the
modern perspective of "moment-to-moment," then it can appear, to the
unsophisticated eye, as just a series of emotional scenes. But if one
understands that Kim's work is all tied to a carefully chosen and deeply felt
character "spine" and that this spine is usually a basic human need, then,
when placed in Kim's CONTEXT, Kim's choices from moment-to-moment make
For example, take the ending of her second film SEANCE ON A WET
AFTERNOON. Kim plays a disturbed medium in this 1965 British film. Kim's
character plots to kidnap a child that she will then lead the police to, thus
"proving" her "second sight" is real. The character craves attention. She
wants to be known and recognized. She feels she is great and has been
ignored. Beneath this conscious desire, is the loss of the character's own
child. Everything Kim's character does in the film is to draw attention to
herself. It is her spine and determines all the branching actions. At the
end, Kim's character goes into her command performance seance for the police
and let's all the stops out, tripping herself up in the process, and plunging
into the painful sorrows connected to the loss of her own child. She is in a
trance. It is a moment of extraordinary acting truth. Kim's character comes
out of this emotional flood and turns to her husband and asks something to
the effect of, "Was I good?" Her emotional outpouring -- for the CHARACTER --
was a great "actor's" performance. It was the realization of the character's
greatest need: her spine. In this context, what might seem as an overly
emotional choice becomes a stroke of truth and genius.
Now we get to two of Kim's performances that directly touched my life:
Masha in Chekhov's THE THREE SISTERS and Rita Shawn in the movie THE GODDESS.
Kim's Masha is considered one of the great performances in the 20th
century American Theatre. Here is what the critic Judith Crist wrote:
"Miss Stanley's Masha is a magnificent figure, reclining in a romantic
moving with a swish of a skirt, the eloquent hands poised for a poetic
Snobberies drip scathingly from her lips, her eyes close against the
of the agonies of others -- but caught up suddenly in a romantic
a burble of self-laughter to fill the pause, she does indeed seethe with
and womanly passion that sweeps the stage and makes it hers."
I can remember the director Jack O'Brien endlessly describing his memory
of Kim in the play. He was particularly taken with her opening moments, where
the character lounges in silence, lost in a private world, and in the scene
in the second act where Masha and Vershinin return to the sisters' home and
Masha's passion for this odd man is awakening and expressing itself through
uncontrolable bursts of laughter. Over the years, I have heard countless
"names" in the theatre gush like school girls in their praise for Kim's
performance in this legendary production by The Actors Studio Theatre.
But not everyone agreed with this glowing estimation of Kim's genius.
In his purely intellectualized and therefore obtuse review of the production,
Robert Brustein compared Kim -- in the opening scene of the play that O'Brien
adored so -- to a beached whale on stage. (Acccording to Bobby Lewis,
Brustein would learn the meaning of cruel and senseless criticism when his
wife Norma died, soon after having been mercilessly attacked for her
performance as Arkadina in THE SEAGULL.)
In his hit-and-miss account of the history of so-called "Method"
acting in America: METHOD ACTORS: THREE GENERATIONS OF AN AMERICAN ACTING
STYLE, Steve Vineberg brutally attacks the acting of Kim Stanley, based on
what he has seen and hated of her film and TV work. He groups Kim with
Geraldine Page and Sandy Dennis and then dismisses and trashes them all as
fat, lumpen, bloated, neurotic, indulgent embarrassments. In fact,
through-out his book he attacks the physical appearance of any female actor
he choses to not like and fawns over the bodies and work of Monty Clift,
Marlon Brando, James Dean and Paul Newman. He has this to say about Kim's
opening scene in THE THREE SISTERS:
"Far from trying to look glamorous, she makes her own features -- the
face, the armored neck, the squat body -- her actress's
she takes this ethic to a shocking extreme in the opening minutes of
THREE SISTERS, when, turned away from the others, staring into the
she uses her weight to give Masha a careless, gone-to-seed
She's a monster statue, a Sphinx, set lumpily in the midst of her
lives, disconnected from them but impossible to ignore."
Needless to say, nothing of what Vineberg says here is true. Kim was
40 years old when the stage production of THE THREE SISTERS was filmed for TV
and her disease -- alcoholism -- coupled with childbirth and aging had caused
her to put on weight. She is not a "monster," but she is fat. What makes Kim
look so physically awkward in the opening moments of the film of the
production is the camera angle. It is horrendous. It adds an enormous amount
of weight to her body. Kim's weight is not a "choice" she made for the
character. It is a fact of her life. If Vineberg cannot see that, it may be
because his "eye for acting" is rather cock-eyed. But then, it is still
rather safe to make horrible comments about fat people in our culture.
Not only does Vineberg completely misread the camera work and Kim's
body, he also fails to grasp the spine of her performance. This lack of
ability on his part causes him to write that Kim Stanley failed to illuminate
Chekhov's theme. He says:
"The real failure of Stanley's acting, however, isn't that it's
excessive or self-
indulgent or rhythmless, but that it doesn't illuminate the characters
the texts. She's too preoccupied with her own feelings to pay attention
relationships between dialogue and action, action and motivation,
context (of all kinds -- setting, situation, and the other characters).
argue that in THE THREE SISTERS, when her responses seem unmoored
to the lines that preceded them, what she's trying to do is suggest
alienation from her surroundings -- to imply that this woman is
to collapse. But the separation between cause and effect is too much a
in her acting."
Vineberg appears to fall into the trap of "bad science" here. He seems
to have a preconceived notion as to what Kim's acting is all about -- private
emotion. This preconceived notion appears to serve as his main means of
understanding what he sees Kim do. He allows for no other explanations. His
condamnation of Kim's work is so absolute and so superficial that one quite
naturally questions it; particularly, when so many speak so highly of her art.
I have watched this production of THE THREE SISTERS many many times. I
do not see any of the things Vineberg claims to witness. I see an actor who
has found a powerful spine for her character and who sets out to develop the
experiential human meaning of its part of the play's truth through a series
of highly imaginative and profoundly insightful psycho/physical actions -- of
which feeling is but a natural and expected component. Chekhov's sisters are
trapped. They are trapped in brutal, backward Russia; they are trapped in a
provincial town; they are trapped in jobs they hate; they are trapped in
marriages they despise; they are trapped by the financial failures of their
brother; they are trapped by the way they were raised; they are trapped by
history; they are trapped by boredom; they are trapped because they are women
and they are trapped by the passage of time.
Kim's Masha starts the play the most trapped of all. She has no job.
She has been forced to give up her artistic life. She has entered into a
loveless marriage she now sees as a great mistake. She must play the role of
a provincial schoolmaster's wife. Her frustration, anger, sorrow and fear
have turned to deep depression. What does one do when one is trapped? One
tries to escape. Kim's Masha and all of Chekhov's characters are seeking --
not AN escape, but TO escape -- just as Russia itself was seeking to escape
from its backward Mongol past at the time the play was first performed.
From the opening moments of the play until the last curtain, Kim
Stanley's Masha takes the audience on an experiential journey into the very
center of the great Russian author's play. She says to us: "Look, and see
what a life lived in social/psychological "bondage" does to a human soul."
When she sits at the beginning, "staring into the air," as Vineberg writes,
she is not a self-indulgent "Method" actor doing some emotional memory
exercise. She is a woman/artist in pain, lost in thought over a poem, playing
and replaying a single phrase of it in her mind because the phrase touches
the very core of her being -- "...and on that oak, a chain of gold." In this
beat, Kim, as Masha, has found the experience of her need to escape, and it
will motivate her entire performance.
Once one knows that Kim's spine is "to escape her life," then all her
choices make perfect sense. Everything Kim does and feels is centered on and
comes from the complete experiential doing of this central organizing stroke
of her art. It is not a performance exploring a woman on the brink of madness
as Vineberg would have us believe. It is true to Chekhov. It shows, in
painful detail, the effect on our lives of that ultimate master -- Time. In
the course of the play's action, Chekhov captures the loss of each
character's dream of life and the resulting "adjustment" each character has
or will make in the face of that loss. When, at the end, still trapped,
Masha's time runs out, Kim releases a volcanic explosion of existential
grief. Everything she has been fighting to free herself of is now her future
and she can only scream in horror. But Kim is not out of control, and,
contrary to Vineberg's belief, Kim, in the midst of her grief, manages to
nail the theme of the play to the very boards of the stage. In her grief, and
you better believe it is deep, personal grief, she stops and simply says the
line, "My life is all wrong." For over a 100 years, the great Russian authors
had been hammering home that one all-encompassing theme -- life in Russia is
all wrong. And here is Kim Stanley, not only giving us the experience of the
character and the play, but handing us an understanding of Russia itself. It
is the kind of acting Stanislavsky spent his life seeking.
Personally, as a 19 year old freshman in college, seeing Kim Stanley's
performance as Masha in Lee Strasberg's profoundly humane production of THE
THREE SISTERS gave me the vision of what true greatness in acting is.
In many ways, THE GODDESS is Kim's most emotionally naked performance.
Kim grew up a lonely child and her character in THE GODDESS grows from an
abandoned child into a lonely lost Hollywood star. Kim's spine for this part
is obvious but true. Her character needs to fill the loneliness in her soul
and every psycho/physical action is an attempt to do just that. To see that
this experiential spine is the root action of Kim performance, all one has to
do is to watch the moment when Lloyd Bridges, playing her husband, comes back
into the hotel room after they have fought. Like a terrified child, Kim runs
and jumps in his arms. The thought of being left alone, after her mother
tried to abandon her as a child, fills the character with terror. Kim spares
herself and the audience nothing in her experiential depiction of the
behavior of this lonely woman.
I first saw THE GODDESS when I moved to New York after college. It
came on TV late one night and I sat up all night watching a level of acting
that, again, I had not see anywhere else. Kim was teaching at that time in
the city and I longed to study with her. After the movie was over, I stayed
up until sunrise writing Kim a letter analyzing everything I loved about her
performance. Her address -- 24 King Street -- was listed in the phone book,
so I took a chance and sent her my letter.
A week later, on a Sunday morning, the phone rang and my roommate
answered it. He said, "It's for you." As he handed me the receiver, he added,
"I think it's Kim Stanley." Well, my heart started racing. "Hello," I said.
It was Kim. I would recognize her voice anywhere. She said that she had
received my letter and found it very interesting. She also said she hated her
performance in THE GODDESS, even though she knew many people liked it. What I
will always remember is the next thing she said, "I do not like my work in
the film, but in your letter, you chose to point out the two moments of my
performance that required extra special work, and if you can do that, you
must certainly have an eye for acting and I want you to come to my class."
What were the two moments that required special effort from Kim? Not
surprisingly, they are quite small, but they expose the core of the
character. One was in a scene by Kim's character's swimming pool after she
has become a star and had an emotional breakdown. Her fundamentalist
Christian, guilt striken mother has come to take care of her and they are
sitting by the pool when company drops by to say hi. Kim insists that this
couple stay for lunch even though they keep telling her they cannot. Kim's
character is manic in her need for them to stay. She is walking toward the
house to tell the cook when they finally get it across to her that they
cannot stay for lunch. Kim momentarily stops and her whole being and demeanor
change. It's as if the character realized for a moment what she was doing and
was instantly alone. Kim's words trail off as she mumbles an excuse and
leaves. It is a small moment, easily lost within the big emotional ones, but
it nails the character.
The other moment was equally tiny. Kim's character is now a world famous
star who is totally dependent on those around her. She is either drunk or
drugged all the time. Her mother dies and she goes home to the funeral. Her
first ex-husband and their only child are there. Kim's character gave up this
child to her ex-husband -- just as her character's mother had tried to
abandon her. Kim's character's ex-husband steps out of a line to greet her
and they speak. Kim then turns to the young girl standing beside him and
almost starts to ask, "And who is this?," until it hits her that it is her
daughter. The flash of guilt-ridden pain is so intense that Kim seems lost
and must turn and walk away. A few moments later, Kim's character screams
hysterically as her mother is buried. Kim feels the character's spine.
Yes, Kim Stanley is an actor of the spine. Once one understands what
the experiential action core -- or spine -- of each of her performances is,
then all her choices appear in their true light. Sadly, the myth of Stella
Adler's meeting with Stanislavsky in Paris has left us with the mistaken
notion that the point of their discussions centered on the use of affective
memory, imagination and physical action in acting. This is not true. When one
reads Stanislavsky's own account of the visit, one finds that the great
Russian stressed to Stella that the spine or super objective or main action
or through line of action was the element of supreme importance in the
understanding of his System's application. (There is a difference between
spine and through action as the spine is actually contained within the
through action, but the essential point is the same.) It is the articulating
of the core action-based idea of the part -- or spine -- and the ability to
find that core within the living reality of the actor that is the bedrock of
the System's approach to character creation. Few actors take the time anymore
to find the psychological form of their parts. Today's aesthetic loves the
moment and montage. It is influenced by rock and film. Kim Stanley's craft
and art is based on the ancient laws of the art of drama. The perfection of
form found in Kim's characterizations is a powerful reminder of the potential
for greatness in the actor's art and of the nature of theatre itself. The
spine. It all comes down to the spine.
Earlier, I mentioned Kim's alcoholism. After THE THREE SISTERS, this
disease overtook Kim's life and her appearances became few and far between.
She would never act on the stage again and she rarely even did film or TV
work. There was a memorable appearance on the old Chad Everett series --
MEDICAL CENTER in 1970. She filmed a Tennessee Williams one-act play for TV
that same year. Then she disappeared again. She taught at the University of
Santa Fe in New Mexico during the 1970's and returned to New York in the late
70's to teach at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute.
Unfortunately, there were many projects during these years that Kim
signed on for but due to her illness was not able to complete. Like Judy
Garland, her illness destroyed her reputation. In his autobiography, the
director Tony Richardson recalls such an experience surrounding the filming
of Edward Albee's play A DELICATE BALANCE in 1973:
"But beyond that there was another reason -- Kim Stanley. At first I'd
kept in touch
with her after NATURAL AFFECTION; then, as with most of her friends,
had been less. Occasionally there'd be snippets through the grapevine
retired to Taos, New Mexico.; she was teaching autistic children; she was
The role of the alcoholic sister was perfect for her. Quixotically, I saw
as a rescue operation, a spectacular comecack for her. I started to track
down, and Neil and I set off for Taos. It was wonderful to see her again,
though overweight, she seemed in good form and with a positive attitude:
wanted to get back to work. I accepted the project, stipulating only that
price was Kim in the role of the alcoholic sister. Dubiously, the Landau
organization agreed. Paul Scofield had said yes, so all that was left was
woo Kate [Hepburn]. The role of the imperious matriarch was ideal for
she resisted it. She didn't understand the play. She also resisted Kim,
that their styles would be too different. (There may have been an old
smell of competition.) But eventually she succumbed.
... Kim arrived a few days ahead. She had not lost her excess weight
she had promised but she was otherwise fine. She stayed with me and always
refused drinks when offered.
The cast came together at my house for the first reading. The idea
have the most relaxed setting possible. I asked them to read the play
lightly, at the kind of pace they might imagine finally playing it, but
trying to perform. That way, I told them, we might get a rough timing for
whole thing. The first act more or less proceeded like that. Then we came
Kim's scenes. Gradually she started to act, not read. She began to
on Edward's text, she crawled on the floor, she sputtered, she cried.
on one way it was a parody of the stereotypical view of Method acting. In
London first-floor drawing room, expressing her emotions, her flesh, her
it was almost obscene. "How could you have let that happen to us?" Paul --
whom I didn't know -- hissed violently at me when we finally broke up. But
it was magnificent -- its reality so compeling, so violently and
exposed, that there was more knowledge of the depths of human experience
and of alcoholism than I've seen in any other performance. It transcended
anything I'd ever imagined could be in the play, and I knew instantly how
to direct it. It had the ugliness, the truth, the understanding of great
it was clear that Kim's truth was at the expense of everything else --
performers, the text of the play, and the exigencies of the production.
If we had
had a year to shoot I could have got something so disturbing on film it
been unwatchable. We had two weeks' rehearsals and then four weeks to
.... Kim had partly collapsed; she knew what the situation was and
try to talk to Kate. Kate wouldn't see her.
I'd brought in my doctor, Patrick Woodcock, a great personal friend
enormous experience in dealing with show-people. He examined Kim. Then
brutally he explained to me what the disease of alcoholism is and how it
manifests itself. He exposed the telltale quarts of vodka buried in a
one sense Patrick's firmness and openness was invaluable, and I understood
for the first time the difference between an alcoholic and a drunk. This
widespread publicizing, because, until the disease is understood and
acknowledged by anyone unfortunate enough to be infected by it, only
suffering and danger can result. It was the hardest decision I've ever
had to make.
It meant turning away from my friend, my idol, the only reason I
enterprise; it also meant denying the one possibility of artistic
Kim had to go."
As insightful and kind as Richardson is to Kim here, I feel he misses
what Kim was doing. I think Kim knew when she arrived for rehearsals that her
win and that she could not complete the film. It had happened before. She
had the best intentions but she was a prisoner of her illness. I think Kim
knew this would become just another story about Kim Stanley, the drunk,
being fired. Kim was not crazy. She could have sat there and simply read the
text of the play. Probably, she could have made it through several rehearsals
before her illness defeated her. But what would she have accomplished if she
would have done that --
played the professional as best she could under her circumstances? Nothing
is what she would have accomplished. She would have still ended up fired. So
what did Kim do? She was an artist. She had one shot at giving the WHOLE
performance she wanted to give but knew her disease would never allow her to
give; she could give it at the read through. If one puts "professional"
expectations aside for a moment and looks at Kim's behavior from her point of
view, everything makes sense. The pride of an artist; the need to fail with
at least one small victory, these things motivated Kim to show her fellow
acting artists just what she was capable of in the part. She knew she would
fail, but she was not going to fail never having shown what she could do.
This is the need of an artist. She was no longer a Broadway/Hollywood
professional; she was just an artist of truth.
I do not find what Richardson describes in the above story "obscene" at
all. I see a genius working; albeit an ill genius. In a little more than a
year, in A WOMAN UNDER THE INFLUENCE, Gena Rowlands would capture what must
be a depiction of emotional/mental illness somewhere near the level of truth
of what Kim did in that livingroom in London. The degree of honest behavior
sought in acting was changing in the late 1960's and early 1970's. What
looked almost obscene to old Hollywood stars and English actors was fast
becoming the most exciting new acting in films since Brando ripped down the
glamour shots of old Hollywood.
Although Kim's illness made acting almost impossible for her, it did not
effect her ability or desire to teach acting nearly as much. As I mentioned
earlier, Kim invited me to her classes based on my insights into her
performance in THE GODDESS. I was scared to death going to my first class
It was in August of 1979, on a Thursday, on the top floor of the
building at 78 Fifth Avenue, at 7PM. I walked into the space and there she
was. She was dressed in a calve-length blue "moo-moo," with a down-turned
white sailor's cap on top of her still lovely blonde hair. She greeted me and
told me that she planned to introduce me to the class as Robert rather than
using my nickname, Bobby. She said I did not want to end up like Bobby Lewis,
who was still being called "Bobby" at 70 years of age. I said it was fine by
me. I was simply in awe of her presence. She gave me no reason to be. She was
as simple as her dress. There was a reserved quality about her, a certain
protective distance, but she never once made you feel you were in the
presence of a legend.
The class was large, maybe 35 people. Kim explained that the new
students would be doing the exercises tonight as a "working" audition process
and this audition process would continue through the next three or four
classes. She said that she needed to see us do a series of warm-up exercises;
a series of sensory improvisations; a series of what she called "positive
need" exercises and, finally, a series of relationship based improvisations.
I would like to point something out here before I continue with Kim's
classes. Kim Stanley is the only acting teacher I have ever known who
actually required a meaningful audition process to assess the "talent" of the
actor. She had no use for monologues. She said they had nothing to do with
acting as acting is what happens between people. She was not interested in
seeing rehearsed scenes as they do at The Actors Studio. She felt such scenes
under such stressful circumstances were worthless. No, Kim auditioned actors
as they had at Boleslavsky's American Lab Theatre in the 1920's and at the
Habimah Studio in Moscow in 1919 -- two homes of the Stanislavsky System. She
gave the actors all sorts of exercises and improvisations to test their total
psycho/physical instrument. She wanted to see the actor work with him or her
self -- not show how well they had rehearsed a professional performance. She
wanted to see how their imaginations functioned. She wanted to see if their
affective memory flowed naturally or if it was in need of exercise and
training. She wanted to see if the actor could relate to others and pursue a
need (Kim's word for objective or task) in the process. It was a complete and
humane audition process. Like in her acting, Kim was always working from the
point of view of the needs and reality of the art and never from the economic
straight-jacket of the "profession."
Class started off with group animal exercises. Kim called maybe 15
people to the stage and asked then to develop farm animals. She gave detailed
instructions concerning the level of reality she expected us to bring to the
work. This was not a playtime. She asked us to use our experience to create
realistic characterizations of the animals. Kim allowed the exercise to run
for 45 minutes. Stopping it when it was obvious that everyone was deep into
their creative process.
Watching Kim watch the actors was a lesson in and of itself. One could
literally "see" her focus her concentration. It was as if she ordered the
very energy surrounding her. Her eyes were locked on the stage, a cigarette
in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other. She saw everything. When an
exercise was over she could trace the work of each actor almost from
moment-to-moment. It should not have surprised me that she possessed such
total and disciplined concentration as her acting is a living example of it,
but it was almost unnerving to witness it up close. I have never seen
anything like it before or since, not even with Lee Strasberg himself.
After the farm animals, Kim had another group of actors create wild
animals. Again, the exercise lasted over 45 minutes.
Next, we moved to sensory improvisations: coming in out of the rain,
snow, heat, etc... Kim did not teach the "Method's" isolated sensory
exercises, but like most of her generation of actors who taught, she placed
the sensory work within the context of simple actions (i e entering).
From there, we moved to the centerpiece of Kim's classes: Her "positive
need" exercise. This exercise was somewhat similar to Sandy Meisner's
"repetition" exercise, but not nearly as structured. Kim asked everyone to
choose a deeply felt need from our lives and a single word to speak while on
stage. Kim would call two actors to the stage and let the exercise slowly
develop. Each one took at least 30 minutes. The actor brought the need alive
within and placed its object of fulfillment in the other actor. Then, by
repeating the single word and by using total psycho/physical behavior, each
actor tried to get what was needed from his or her partner, while taking in
and responding to what the partner was needing from him or her.
Kim often said that her European students did this exercise better than
the Americans, even with the language barrier. It was easy to see why. The
American actors were full of learned social behavior that kept truth of
behavior and feeling at bay, while the European actors were devoid of this
puritanical tradition and their psychological selves were more easily and
directly revealed. (It is the removal of socialized behavior in the actor and
not "psycho-analysis" that is at the root of the "Method's" work with
breaking down habits of behavior. The target is social -- not psychological.)
During the "positive need" work, Kim acted a bit for us. She told us we
could not take "To humiliate" as a positive need (actors can only play
positives not negatives -- hence the name). She said that to play "to
humiliate" was too easy; we did it every day on the streets of New York. She
told us to take "to destroy" as our positive need. "Doing that one will cost
you, she said, "And if acting class does not cost you something in emotional
nakedness each time, then it is worthless." She then proceeded to create the
inner life of the need "to destroy." Within seconds, Kim was a figure out of
By the time we were finished with the "positive need" exercises it was
2 AM and Kim decided to end her 7 hour class. I was tired, hungry and happy.
I stayed with Kim a few months, but in time, because of money, I had to
choose between her and a more orthodox "Method" class. Kim's class was not
too expensive. She simply put a large straw basket in the center of the room
and told everyone to drop their $15 dollars in it. But Kim wanted you to take
3 classes a week and I could not manage that and my other classes. I knew if
I wanted to be the actor I could be that I should stay with Kim, but I wanted
to be a director; train an ensemble and create a true theatre based on the
model of the Group Theatre. For that, I wanted to know the ends-and-outs of
the highly structured training approach Lee Strasberg had developed, and so I
chose to go in that direction. It was the hardest decision I have ever made
as I wanted to do both. Such is life.
What made Kim the best acting teacher I ever experienced was her profound
empathy and kindness. She never pulled rank on an actor. If someone
disagreed with her, she did not get angry. She took it as if she had failed to
make the point clear and would then gently return to the topic through-out the
class, hoping to make herself understood. She was a marvel at getting across the
concept of the actor's dual consciousness -- as all great actors always are.
Most of all, it was her very being. One was able to just be with genius. To
watch it act, think, feel and do. It rubbed off on us somehow. Most great actors
have been less than great teachers. Not so with Kim
Stanley. She was as extraordinary in the studio as she was on stage -- a true
artist of the theatre.
When the actor Laurette Taylor died in 1946, Harold Clurman wrote a
short essay on her life. If you will remember, earlier, I quoted Clurman
saying that Kim Stanley was, at the start of her career, the "youngest
member" of that line of female American actors whose emblematic figures were
Laurette Taylor and Pauline Lord, so it should not be surprising that what Clurman
had to say about American show business' failure to support the art of
Laurette Taylor also applies to our last great artist of stage acting:
"Laurette Taylor's life was tragic. Her appearances in the past fifteen years
were so infrequent that when she arrived in THE GLASS MENAGERIE most people
spoke of her as a discovery. She had made a "comeback." But Laurette Taylor's
fate in this regard is very similar to that of many other players --
particularly actresses -- beaten by the brutal anarchy of our stage. It would be
dolefully instructive to draw up a list of the really talented
actresses -- living and dead -- who have been unconscious sacrifices to our
mindless theatre. To speak of their personal vices in order to explain their
destiny is to mistake the effect for the cause. Most of the actresses who do
survive our system of theatrical production, so that at the age of fifty they
may be considered at the height of their effective powers, are endowed with a
kind of toughness that rarely accompanies the most sensitive of talent."
You changed my life. You showed me what greatness in acting could be.
If there is a heaven, then, for theatre artists like you, who have always
longed for a real theatre, heaven has to be just that: a permanent company of
actors; sharing a common craft, aesthetic and experiential motivation;
performing plays with meaning for all our lives and doing so in true rotating
rep. I know Lee, Harold, Bobby, Boleslavsky, Stanislavsky, Vakhtangov and all
the other visionaries of the art of the theatre are waiting for you. If they
are smart, they have the next ten seasons mapped out with all kinds of parts
for you. But please do me a favor. Save THE THREE SISTERS, GOLDEN BOY and THE
TRAVELING LADY for you and me. I want to experience Chekhov through you once
again; I want to hear you whisper Clifford's spine to Joe Bonaparte and I
want to be with you when you become Georgette Thomas once more; casting all
caution to the wind; placing your life at the mercy of "the kindness of
strangers" and; finally, finding a way home.
Kim Stanley VERY LONG POST
Posted by Auggie27 2012-08-12 16:22:13
I still recall her Emmy winning performance on BEN CASEY (and I believe she appeared twice), having seen it as a young child. I believe she played a Christian Scientist, who refused to allow a blood transfusion. I'll never forget her revulsion in learning they'd provided her one to save her life. It left an indelible impression.
UPDATE: She played a high profile attorney with a heroin addiction. I remember her eating marshmallows!
Kim Stanley VERY LONG POST
Posted by jv92 2012-08-12 20:23:41
THE GODDESS might be something of a melodramatic soap opera, but Kim Stanley is absolutely fantastic in it. Highly recommended!
Kim Stanley VERY LONG POST
Posted by PalJoey 2012-08-13 07:43:45
Popular! I had no idea!
Kim Stanley VERY LONG POST
Posted by henrikegerman 2012-08-13 09:18:42
I remember seeing a PBS broadcast of Three Sisters many years ago. The cast also included Shelley Winters as Natasha, Salem Ludwig, James Olson and Robert Loggia.
Kim Stanley VERY LONG POST
Posted by MrMidwest 2012-08-13 10:08:36
Kim Stanley VERY LONG POST
Posted by 3bluenight 2012-08-13 14:14:37
Here is a vimeo preview of a documentary that's been in a works for a few years.
Kim Stanley VERY LONG POST
Posted by GoSmileLaughCryClap 2012-08-13 14:26:00
She was the Narrator/Voice of Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird. Her voice in the opening scene really set the tone beautifully.
Kim Stanley VERY LONG POST
Posted by EricMontreal22 2012-08-14 02:18:16
I've always wondered about that 1950s broadcast of Bus Stop--I wish the full thing would pop up (if it was all filmed?)
Kim Stanley VERY LONG POST
Posted by 3bluenight 2012-08-15 00:09:02
One of the more tantalizing "might have beens" was her casting as Claire in the film adaptation of A Delicate Balance. I believe Tony Richardson (the film's director) talked about her read through. She was let go and the wonderful Kate Reid replaced. Still what a performance that might have been.