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Anne Heywood Profile

Anne Heywood
Anne Heywood
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(Violet Joan Pretty)
11 December 31 is born in Handsworth / Birmingham, England, one of seven children. Her father, Harold, is a former orchestral violinist, now working in factories.
? attends York Road School
August 38 attends St. Mary's School
? moves with her family into a new council house at 147 Shaftmoor Lane after a year at 49 Lyncroft Road
War Years moves with her family to 197 Bleak Hill Road, Erdington, where they will stay until approximately 1950
? attends Fentham Road Secondary School
c. 44 her mother dies suddenly when Anne is just 13. She has to leave school at fourteen to look after the younger members of her family. This frustrates her wish to go to art school.
c. 45 at the age of fourteen, she works for three months as an usherette at the A.B.C. Palace cinema in Erdington
c. 47 has won 14 beauty titles and 1,800 pounds / $43,000 by age 16. Later she will confess she did it for the money.
47 joins Highbury Little Theatre in Sutton Coldfield and stays for two years
is crowned "Carnival Queen" of Birmingham University and wins a dozen more beauty titles
30 August 50 wins the National Bathing Beauty Contest. Held in Morecambe from 1945-1980, in 1956 the contest is renamed "Miss Great Britain." Her prizes are £1000 and a silver rose bowl.
51 debuts in films as a beauty queen in Lady Godiva Rides Again
is signed by Canadian compere Carroll Levis. She is featured prominently in one of his "discovery" shows for four years, touring theaters around the country. She even appears with the show three times on television.
? becomes Carroll Levis' No. 1 discovery
December 54 is Britain's "TV-Eyeful"
55 is spotted by a Rank talent scout while playing the principal boy in Aladdin at the Chelsea Palace
changes her name to Anne Heywood. Later she'll recall: "I always hated my name. It sounded unreal."
56 is signed to a seven-year contract with Rank
c. 57 the 2/7 Gurkha Rifles elect her as their pinup
20 September 57 she and fellow actress Belinda Lee are on hand when British film magnate J. Arthur Rank cuts an enormous cake at the 21st anniversary celebration of Pinewood Studios
November 57 she and fellow Rank starlets June Laverick and Jill Ireland present the gowns they will wear at the Royal Film Performance in London
7 November 57 attends the Royal Film Performance in London together with Cecil B.DeMille, Jack Hawkins, Jill Ireland, Sophia Loren, Jayne Mansfield, Yvonne Mitchell, Heather Sears, and Tommy Steele
May 58 columnist Earl Wilson reports her to be a "Wilson Girl" candidate
Mid-November 58 triumphs at the world premiere of her Floods of Fear at the Gaumont Theatre at Haymarket, London. Among the invited guests are Lord Mancroft, Sir Ronald Howe; actors Sidney James, John Richardson, Yvonne Buckingham, and Barbara Steele; British boxer Freddie Mills; and members of the British and international press corps. Pretty premiere hostesses grace the foyer in filmy rain capes and fishnet tights, while men in yellow oilskins, southwester hats and rubber boots mount a guard of honor.
Christmas 58 flies to Rome to have tests and fittings for Carthage in Flames. The Rank Corporation, to whom she's under contract, have encouraged her to make this picture for Gallone-Lux Films to broaden her experience. Shooting will start next May.
January 59 is expected to be Britain's busiest star in 1959, filming Cartage in Flames and Heart of a Man simultaneously. She will start filming Upstairs and Downstairs in March.
59 her part in Ferry to Hong Kong goes to Sylvia Syms
c. 59 is off to Ireland for the filming of The Night Fighters opposite Robert Mitchum. There she meets her future husband, producer Raymond Stross.
c. 60 she and Stross call Zurich, Switzerland, their home
1 September 60 presents the Daily Mirror trophy at the Variety Club's horse race meeting in Sandown Park, Surrey
12 November 60 marries Stross in a civil ceremony at the Stadthaus in Zurich, Switzerland. He's 16 years her senior.
61 fulfils a longstanding ambition to play the title role at London's Scala Theatre’s production of Peter Pan
24 May 62 attends the Variety Club Star Gala at Battersea Festival Gardens, London
11 January 63 her son, Mark, is born at a London nursing home
c. 64 attends the Berlin Film Festival, where her Ninety Degrees in the Shade wins the International Critics' Prize
August 66 is off to Lima, Peru, for the filming of "Selva Alta" or "High Jungle," a television movie for MGM, co-starring Eric Fleming and Nico Minardos
Mid-September 66 she, Fleming, and a film crew leave Lima to shoot location shots in the high jungle around Tingo Maria, approximately 220 miles northeast of Lima, where Fleming drowns on September 28 while filming a scene at the Huallaga River. His body surfaces three days later and 15 miles downriver.
January 67 columnist Earl Wilson reports her filming The Fox in Toronto. "She flew to New York to have her hair done, flew back the same day."
March 67 there are rumors of a fist fight between actor Keir Dullea and producer Raymond Stross in Toronto during the filming of The Fox. One story is the other actors felt that she, Mrs. Raymond Stross, was the producers pet.
October 67 completes dubbing for The Fox in Hollywood and immediately reports for her new picture, Charly, with Cliff Robertson
67 wins a Golden Globe for her part in The Fox
Fall 68 is off to Italy for the $2.5 million production The Lady, a.k.a. La Monaca di Monza, about Sister Virginia, the Nun of Monza. The film is shot in a fifteenth-century castle 27 miles north of Rome and in medieval churches in Lombardy, where the original story took place. Her co-star, Hardy Kruger, flies in from his guest farm in Tanzania, where he raises cattle, pigs, and poultry.
30 November 68 completes filming of The Lady and is scheduled for The Midas Run, The Chairman, and The Novice, a contemporary western to be shot in Mexico early in February 1969
December 68 while filming The Lady in Italy, she encounters student riots and strikes. "It's just like making a movie in Hollywood," she says.
January 69 her husband is reported paying Lloyds of London premiums of $12,200 a year for a policy covering her eyes. "Her eyes are her greatest asset," he says. They can change from brown to hazel to blue-grey and even an occasional purple.
is set for a two-hour video picture for NBC with director Federico Fellini
69 films The Midas Run in Italy and England. Co-star Richard Crenna will remember in 1978: "The original screenplay was marvelous, but it was probably surprising that the movie didn't turn out worse - considering the script changes our leading lady made." By the time shooting is done, the screenwriters take out trade-paper ads thanking her for the script - and have their names removed from the credits. Crenna contents that she also had a hand in directing the approach of certain scenes. "Like our love scene; she had the bed tilted at a 45-degree angle so that her breasts would photograph more flatteringly."
May 69 the next joint effort with her husband will be The Life of Margaret Senger, a story about the brilliant pioneer in the birth control field
she, her husband, and her seven-year-old son plan to make their future home in Los Angeles
July 69 20th Century-Fox orders a helicopter to fly her to the various premieres scheduled around the Los Angeles area for The Chairman. Plans call for her to appear at six premieres within an hour and cover more than 300 square miles.
the press reports that somebody misplaced a bank draft for $243,000 at the penthouse apartment where she and Stross are staying. "But then it turned up again, after several jittery days. It was stuck behind a drawer."
her Lady of Monza grosses more than $1,000,000 in its initial run in Italy and pays back its negative cost in three weeks. It's scheduled for US release in August.
July 72 her husband casts her for his upcoming The Woman Who Rode Away, a story taken from a book by D.H. Lawrence, to be filmed in Mexico in January 1973 with Roger Vadim directing
November 73 filming on The Woman Who Rode Away will begin in Spain in December 1973. Stross says: "We are filming in a very rugged terrain. I must make sure Anna is pleased with the accommodations. If not, I may have to re-title the movie to The Woman Who Drove Away."
31 July 88 becomes the widow of Stross, who dies at age 72 in Los Angeles
c. 90 marries George Danzig Druke, a former assistant attorney general of New York State and makes her home in Beverly Hills, California
October 92 is guest of honor at the Birmingham International Film and Television Festival
05 as Anne Heywood Druke, she lives in Beverly Hills
Sources:
Acocks Green History Society, Birmingham Central Library, www.britishpathe.com, pro.corbis.com, Picturegoer, Motion Picture, Photoplay, The New York Times, Two Rivers Reporter, The Lima News, The Daily Gleaner, Indiana Evening Gazette, The Times Recorder, Chronicle-Telegram, The News, Bucks County Courier Times, News Record, Oakland Tribune, Valley Morning Star, Panorama, Syracuse Post-Standard
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