Sunday, September 30, 2012

Thinking about Vanya's brother, Kerle tonight

Came across this profoundly moving eulogy, written by Vanya's niece, Vivian, about her dear father, Kerle, who was Vanya's brother. So beautifully written, full of love, respect and deeply uplifting. It brought tears to my eyes.

Looking at the photographs, there is one of a newspaper clipping about Kerle's internment in a Japanese prisoner of war camp.

It mentions the family address at that time. I wanted to see where Vanya's family lived then, during World War II. 

There's an image on Google maps of 4481 Avenue Madison
Montréal, QC H4B 2V1, Canada

Vanya had told me many times about her brother being a prisoner of war, the terrible impact it had on the family for years, as everybody didn't know if he would be found, a kind of holding their breath in dread for year after year. I think she felt insignificant and helpless all those years. She was 14 when he was captured in far off Java, 17 years old when he was freed and came home again. Much of their relationship as brother and sister was taken away by that experience, separated by war, fear, disappearance, time and distance. I think it left Vanya somewhat paralyzed in her feelings, unable to grieve, sort of on hold when it came to losing somebody.

His disappearance definitely traumatized her. Of course it was in a much different way than the harsh reality of Kerle's being a prisoner of war, the life and death reality he faced. Her trauma was internal, no obvious wounds she could talk about or show anybody. But the fear of losing her brother, of not knowing, all those years, the dread, it hurt her deeply and left deep scars.

Strange to know Vanya's brother only from her point of view, not having met him in person. I wish I had met him. I spent 20 years of my life hearing stories off and on about Kerle. An odd mosaic hologram that, knowing about him through his sister's memories and thoughts. 

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Vanya's ex-husband, Charles Jarrott

Charles' marriage to Rosemary Palin (1st wife)
CATEGORY: PortraitATTACHED TO: Charles B Jarrott (1927-2011)
Vanya at her wedding to Charles Jarrott
Charles Jarrott (16 June 1927 – 4 March 2011)[1] was a British film and television director. He was best known for costume dramas he directed for producer Hal B. Wallis, among them Anne of the Thousand Days, which earned him a Golden Globe for Best Director in 1970.
Jarrott died on 4 March 2011 from prostate cancer.

Born: 16-Jun-1927
Birthplace: London, England
Died: 4-Mar-2011
Location of death: Los Angeles, CA
Cause of death: Cancer - Prostate
Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Film Director

Nationality: England
Executive summary: Anne of the Thousand Days

Wife: Rosemary Palin (m. 5-May-1949, div. 7-May-1957)
Wife: Katharine Blake (actress, m. 11-Jul-1959, div. 7-May-1982, d. 1-Mar-1991)
Wife: Suzanne Bledsoe (m. 13-Sep-1992, d. 26-Sep-2003)

    Golden Globe 1970 for Anne of the Thousand Days
    Risk Factors: Prostate Cancer

Charles Jarrott obituary

British-born director known for Anne of the Thousand Days and Mary, Queen of Scots
Charles Jarrott
Charles Jarrott started his career on Armchair Theatre and The Wednesday Play. Photograph: Ronald Grant
The film and television director Charles Jarrott, who has died of cancer aged 83, began his career during a golden period of British TV drama, working on Armchair Theatre and The Wednesday Play in the 1960s alongside writers and directors such as Ken Loach, Dennis Potter and David Mercer. Both series were presided over by the Canadian producer Sydney Newman, who encouraged original work – what he called "agitational contemporaneity" – and had an astonishing impact. But in 1969 Jarrott's career took a different turn when he left for Hollywood, thereby increasing his income a hundredfold, while having to contend with far less adventurous material. His best films were his first, two Elizabethan costume dramas, Anne of the Thousand Days and Mary, Queen of Scots, enlivened by the Oscar-nominated performances of Richard Burton (Henry VIII), Geneviève Bujold (Anne Boleyn) and Vanessa Redgrave (Mary Stuart); Jarrott himself won a Golden Globe for his direction of the former.
Born in London, Jarrott was brought up in glamorous surroundings. His father, also Charles Jarrott, was one of Britain's greatest racing drivers. Jarrott Sr's mottos were that it was better "to race clean and lose, than to win by foul driving" and "finish at all costs". His son inherited much of his morality and determination, and a taste for show business from his mother, who was a musical-comedy performer. 
After begging his recently widowed mother to allow him to join the Royal Navy during the second world war, Jarrott served in the far east while still a teenager. After being demobbed, he joined the Nottingham Repertory Theatre as actor, stage manager and director. In 1953, he moved to Canada, where he directed his first TV play for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, on which Newman was supervising producer.
When Jarrott returned to Britain in 1960, Newman, who had joined ABC Television, invited him to join his team of young directors. Some of Jarrott's contemporaries were directors Philip Saville, Ted Kotcheff, and Alvin Rakoff, and writers Donald Churchill, Clive Exton, Alun Owen, Allan Prior and Hugh Leonard. Few of them made successful transitions to the big screen nor did much better or more interesting work than they did during this period.
Four years later, when Newman moved to the BBC, Jarrott joined him. Among the first teleplays he directed was The Young Elizabeth (1964), starring his South-African born wife Katharine Blake as Mary Tudor, a foretaste of his feature-film debut. Among his directing triumphs at the BBC were two plays by Harold Pinter, Tea Party (1965) and The Basement (1967); The Wesker Trilogy (1966); a couple of Irish-set plays by Leonard; and The Snow Ball (1966), adapted by his wife from the Brigid Brophy novel.
From 1959 to 1969, Jarrott was mostly occupied with directing a breathtaking range of plays for Armchair Theatre. There were fantasies – notably The Rose Affair (1961), Owen's take on Beauty and the Beast; social dramas, such as Athol Fugard's The Blood Knot (1963); classics, including Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray (1961) with Jeremy Brett in the title role, and comedies. One of his final television assignments before Hollywood called was The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (1968), shot in Canada, with Jack Palance in the dual role.
All this remarkable work brought him to the attention of the producer Hal B Wallis, who invited Jarrott to direct Anne of the Thousand Days (1969), the success of which led to Mary, Queen of Scots (1971). Jarrott then embarked on Lost Horizon (1973), an expensive ($7m-plus), interminable (150 minutes), musical version of James Hilton's novel about Shangri-La. Actually, Jarrott did the best he could against the dire songs, the calamitous choreography and the kitschy sets. The mega-flop ruined the career of the producer Ross Hunter, but only slightly dented Jarrott's. 
Away from the purgatory of Shangri-La, Jarrott's next film was The Dove (1974), the name of a 23ft sloop on which 16-year-old Robin Lee Graham (Joseph Bottoms) sailed for five years on a solo voyage around the world in 1965. Photographed on location by Sven Nykvist, it was a sea-blue movie with most of the footage being of Bottoms, weathering tropical storms and being swept overboard, only interrupted by a soppy love story on the Fiji islands. Soppy, too, was The Other Side of Midnight (1977), based on a bestselling novel by Sidney Sheldon. An over-the-top melodrama, it covered the second world war and its aftermath in three hours.
Jarrott, who had settled in Los Angeles, was taken up by Walt Disney Productions for several films including The Last Flight of Noah's Ark (1980) and Condorman (1981), neither of which added to his reputation. His subsequent work on American television could not have been more dissimilar from his days at ITV and BBC. There were biopics such as Ike (1986), on Eisenhower; I Would Be Called John: Pope John XXIII (1987); Poor Little Rich Girl: The Barbara Hutton Story (1987); and The Woman He Loved (1988), on Edward VIII and Mrs Simpson, and soaps based on blockbuster novels by Judith Krantz (Till We Meet Again, 1989), Danielle Steel (Changes, 1991) and Jackie Collins (Lady Boss, 1992).
Jarrott's last feature, Turn of Faith (2002), co-produced by and starring former boxer Ray Mancini, was a minor mobster thriller. Jarrott, who was married three times, leaves no survivors.
• Charles Jarrott, film and television director, born 16 June 1927; died 4 March 2011

Charles Jarrott

Charles Jarrott, 83, Director of Period Movies, Dies