Movies

Jacqueline Bisset On A Legendary Career, Surviving Hollywood, And Working With The Greats

The fun thing about this job, and about doing this particular series we call The Actor’s Side, is that every now and then the opportunity presents itself to be able to have a conversation with someone I believe is truly a legend in the movie business, however you may want to define the term.

So when I called Jacqueline Bisset that word at the beginning of our interview for my Deadline video series, she balked a bit, knowing that she has worked with a lot of legends herself, and doesn’t really put herself in that category. But in a career that now spans nearly 60 years, Bisset is definitely a survivor, and will even admit to being labeled an “icon” by some. However you want to catergorize it, Jacqueline Bisset is star, and a truly great actor who keeps working and deserves to keep finding roles worthy of her talent.

I tell her she virtually started her film career in a movie I still consider my favorite of all time, 1967’s Two For The Road in which she has a small role in the Stanley Donen film that starred Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney.

Later in her career she would be starring opposite Finney in another classic, John Huston’s Under The Volcano, and here she tells great stories about working with Huston (who she calls a “dangerous man”), not just on that but also opposite Paul Newman in The Life And Times Of Judge Roy Bean. All too quickly we touch on her work in forever movies like Bullitt with Steve McQueen, and Francois Truffaut’s Oscar winning Day For Night, a movie she says gave her new credibility in the industry. She also talks about making The Deep, a film experience she liked until the studio marketed it chiefly with her in a wet T-shirt that she felt was exploiting her.

Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Anthony Quinn, William Holden, Marcello Mastroianni, Jean Paul Belmondo, Nick Nolte, so many many more she also worked with, even Sir Laurence Olivier in Inchon, although she notes they had no scenes together, but instead a very memorable dinner on location. And speaking of memorable dinners, there is one that is at the center of her new film, Loren & Rose, which revolves around a famous actress who has seen better days meeting with a very young director for the lead role in his new film. Playing Rose in this independently made movie by Russell Brown Bisset has been given one of the best roles of her career and she delivers a terrific performance.

We talk about that and so much more including the night she won a Golden Globe for the 2013 TV Film, Dancing On The Edge, and was so shocked it turned into one of the more unforgettable moments on any awards show. Maybe Loren & Rose will give her another opportunity for recognition of a remarkable career. To watch our conversation just click on the link above.

Join me every Wednesday during Oscar season for another episode of The Actor’s Side.

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