JULIE CHRISTIE by Michael Feeney Callan


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Closely observed, avid bio-filmographical study of Christie, done without her help--though reserved, coolly serious, often unsure Julie might not have added much swing. Born in India, Julie was brought back to England for her school years but was an overenergetic trial for her substitute parents, restlessly hopping through five schools. She entered acting in her late teens, moved quickly into a science fiction TV series (playing an alien computer android for seven installments), soon appeared in B-picture British comedies. John Schlesinger, later to shape her Oscar-winning performance in Darling, couldn't see much in her early work and used her only by default for a cameo--then saw the starlight. Said The Times about her 11 minutes on screen: ""She has that rare quality of obliterating everything else from the screen whenever she moves across."" At 24, Darling exploded her into megastardom as the symbol of the Swinging '60s. Her role as Lara, the romantic poet-doctor's inspiration, in David Lean's Doctor Zhivago nailed her to the heavens. In response she withdrew, ""rarely allowed public insights into her life and thoughts. Darling made Julie Christie and minted an enduring enigma."" Her pictures begin bombing--then she meets Warren Beatty for a seven-year off-on romance Otis wry anti-marriage humor gives a great lift to coverage of those years). Christie still fights to broaden her range, deepen herself as a feminist. Childless and still unmarried, she's her own woman, cuts a strong figure, and had an inspiring return to India for Heat and Dust. But despite the drama of her career, something is missing of her person in these pages, perhaps something unobtainable from the sound of her silences.

Pub Date: June 18th, 1985
Publisher: St. Martin's