When I met Leslie Howard at Denham studios there was talk of a film about Bonnie Prince Charlie that Korda was planning to make with Howard as Charles Edward Stuart. He knew the hazards (and others were to discover how great they were) but he said he was attracted by the rôle since he thought of the Prince as a symbol of youthful idealism. It might well have worked. As he showed in Pimpernel Smith and The First of the Few, Howard could inject a firm sense of purpose into the posture of languorous elegance he often adopted on the screen. He might even have persuaded the Clan Chiefs not to turn back at Derby and march on London.
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Though 'the hotel had a reputation as the area’s best, its staff were not used to looking after world leaders, so the arrival of Cuba’s new strongman, Fidel Castro, came as something of a shock.'
@dcsandbrook on @simonhallwriter's 'Ten Days in Harlem'.
'After all, who knows what anybody is really like, or what they really think? The biographer – same as a painter of portraits – cannot help but reproduce himself to some degree.'
From the archive: Beryl Bainbridge talks to Sebastian Shakespeare.
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