Before she was the Dowager Countess, Maggie Smith won an Oscar, for the Prime of Miss Jean Brodie



    • What the! I lived there then, Dad was working, I was shuttling back and forth by train and bus to school with legions of other children trekking across London every morning. Were you one of them? I think we’re about the same age…

      • That’s some high school! You might have seen Ingrid Bergman in The Constant Wife (on stage with a bandaged sprained ankle) around that time and John Gielgud… in a play I can’t remember the name of! Maybe it was “Home”, I don’t recall much of it, only thinking: that’s John Gielgud!

      • I DID see Ingrid Bergman. And Rex Harrison and Jeremy Irons and Vanessa Redgrave and Alistair Sims. Pure magic I went twice — quite a field trip !

  1. She is absolutely one of the best. I saw her in an absolutely dreadful passengers-stuck-in-an-airport movie (starring the fab Elizabeth Taylor & Richard Burton) but she (Maggie) was wonderful. If the movie centred on her character, she could have made it a decent movie.

  2. George Kaplan

    Another favorite. Flame-haired Maggie (once married to Robert Stephens, an fine actor driven to a near breakdown by Billy Wilder during the making of the sublime Private Life of Sherlock Holmes). I must admit I’m sick her playing the duchess as it’s a role she can play in her sleep. Watch her in the Gosford Park version of that role, Altman’s film is excellent and that’s enough. Far preferable to seeing Gosford screenwriter Fellows draw the idea out in his Upstairs, Downstairs rip-off! What? I was *ranting*?! Sorry!
    Maggie has been fantastic in so many things, there’s one sequence in Spielberg’s Hook that redeems that whole film (there’s another too but I doubt many would agree with that one!), in which we see the story of Peter Pan’s life, his loss of his mother, spiriting away to Neverland (not the Jackson version. Thank God!), meeting Wendy, etc. and at the end of it he flies in the window to discover that Wendy is now aged, “I’m ever so much older than…” Oh, it makes me cry. So sad! Dame Maggie sells it. So fine.

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