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Vivien Leigh: A Cruel Homewrecking Cunt

In a compelling memoir, the wife of actor Peter Finch recalls how his turbulent affair with Vivien Leigh led to the world's most desired woman bursting into her bedroom naked and hysterical...

In this exclusive extract from her new autobiography, Peter Finch's first wife, ballerina Tamara Finch — now 87 and living in Spain — describes how she ended up as a reluctant member of one of Hollywood's most infamous love triangles.

AT TWO o'clock in the morning on a frosty January night in 1953, Peter — then my husband of almost ten years —and I were warm and snug in bed in our flat in Dolphin Square, London, when the phone rang. It was Vivien Leigh. Despite the hour, Vivien announced that she was coming over to see us. She wanted to talk, she said.

Vivien was married to Laurence Olivier, and having recently won Oscars for her performances in A Streetcar Named Desire. Peter jumped out of bed. Al-though we were used to various actor friends dropping in at strange hours, Vivien had never called on us before.

Peter had recently performed in several plays in London after Olivier had spotted him on stage. But we never really saw our benefactor — or his wife — socially. Alarmed, we frantically began tidying up the flat.

A few minutes later, Vivien arrived. It had been snowing, her hair was wet and she was wearing a mink coat. When she took the coat off, all she had on was a clinging, almost transparent dress that looked more like an underslip.

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by Anonymousreply 112November 12, 2021 4:30 AM

Another thread from this wretched troll and her million threads a day about nothing actresses from a hundred years ago. Get help, OP.

by Anonymousreply 1November 11, 2021 1:55 PM

She handed Peter the script for Elephant Walk — the Hollywood film she was about to play the lead in — and demanded that he read the part of her husband, the tea planter.

While Peter sat down to read the script, Vivien paced restlessly around our flat. She had decided that Peter — whom she had seen on stage — was to play the leading role because Larry had let her down, she said. She was going to show her husband that she didn't need him.

There was no need for a screen test — Vivien had the contractual right to approve her leading man. 'And I've chosen you,' she said. It was going to be the biggest production Paramount Stu-dios had undertaken for some time, and Peter, flattered, agreed to the part immediately.

After complaining our flat was too stuffy, opening a few of our drawers to inspect their contents and commenting on our cheap curtain linings, Vivien suddenly announced she was leaving and wanted to walk along the Embankment to her home in Chelsea.

It was 4am, so Peter insisted on seeing her home. In a flash they were gone — the world's most beautiful, powerful screen actress and my husband — leaving me feeling a mix of elation and alarm as I tried to pacify our three-year-old daughter Anita, who had been woken by this extraordinary night-time intrusion.

After that, events moved swiftly. Contracts and salaries were arranged. With the handsome sum of £9,000 plus expenses agreed upon, Peter was packed off on a plane with Vivien on his way to Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) to begin filming. The location shoot was to be a short one. The crew was then to return to Hollywood for filming at Paramount Studios.

Anita and I were to join Peter in Hollywood. At Los Angeles airport, we were met by a representative from the production company in a black limousine, who explained Peter was filming and would join us later.

By 6.3o pm we were deposited on the driveway of a huge house with an enormous swimming pool, around which were set 20 tables covered in pink tablecloths and elaborate flower arrangements. I couldn't work out whether it was a hotel, guest house or private accommodation.

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by Anonymousreply 2November 11, 2021 1:57 PM

Oh who tf cares. She was bipolar. Moving on.

by Anonymousreply 3November 11, 2021 2:00 PM

At this point I was sure there had been a mistake: the apartment was full of clothes that certainly weren't mine. But the maid said there was no mistake. The twin beds were stacked with glamorous underwear, negligees and lacy nightgowns. In the smaller bedroom was a cupboard full of children's clothes — all in Anita's size.

An hour or so later, Peter arrived back from the studio with Vivien, who explained that she had organised a welcome party for me. Despite the fact I was exhausted from the journey, she insisted I hand Anita over to the maid and rushed me to get changed into an outfit she had chosen for me.

However, as soon as Peter complimented me on my appearance, Vivien's manner changed and she ran straight from the bedroom.

The party — attended by a host of friends of the Oliviers, including David Niven, Stewart Granger and Jean Simmons — ended almost as abruptly as it had started when Vivien, who had refused to be coaxed out of her apartment to meet her guests,

Suddenly appeared on the stairs in a terrible state. She was screaming, crying and sobbing because, she told Peter, she couldn't contact Larry on the phone in Italy where he was working. Various friends tried to calm her down, but she was hysterical.

She eventually had to be carried to her apartment by Peter and David Niven.

`Is she mad?' I asked Peter later, as calm finally prevailed.

`No, she's just strained, lonely and worried, not hearing from Larry,' he replied.

But this is not normal behavior,' I continued.

`You don't understand —she's close to a nervous breakdown,' Peter explained. `Please look after her, help her. She's so glad you're here. She bought all Anita's clothes and arranged the party for you.'

by Anonymousreply 4November 11, 2021 2:01 PM

Leigh certainly wasn't the mos desired woman in the world by the time of Streetcar of Elephant Walk.

by Anonymousreply 5November 11, 2021 2:03 PM

With her husband away, was Viv going through Severe Post Penis Withdrawal?

by Anonymousreply 6November 11, 2021 2:05 PM

Having been apart for so long, Peter and I made passionate love that night, then settled, limbs entwined, for the night. I felt loved and secure.

But just as I was about to drop off, our bedroom door flew open and a demented looking Vivien Leigh, her robe thrown open to display her naked body, rushed to our bed.

Screaming obscenities, she tore off the bedclothes. When she realized we were naked, she collapsed at the foot of the bed sobbing, shouting at Peter: 'You haven't told her, you haven't told her! How could you be sleeping with her, you monster? You're my lover!'

I was as stunned as if I had been hit by a thunderbolt. Peter, who had grabbed a robe, was shaking with anger. Through my shock and fear, I dimly began to realize that perhaps the most desired woman in the world had seduced my husband.

Peter tried to get Vivien to her feet but she was clinging to his legs. When he finally got her to stand up, she clung to his head and tried to kiss him. He pinned her against the wall and shouted: 'We agreed to keep Larry and Tamara out of this last night. We agreed to keep it a secret, not to hurt anyone, and finish it all.'

She sobbed and swore and screamed that she couldn't bear to see him so happy with me; that he should tell me our marriage was over.

Eventually Peter dragged Vivien back to her apartment.

An unbelievable silence followed when he returned. I was Cold and shaking uncontrollably. I did not know what I wanted from Peter. An explanation? There was no need: it was so horribly obvious what had happened. A gesture of affection? That would be false. A row? I was incapable. I didn't even feel hurt. I had turned to stone.

In our greatest moments of drama, pain or conflict as a couple, Peter had always escaped into sleep. Tonight was no different: he just curled up and drifted off, while I sat there wondering what to do. What could one do if one's opponent in love was one of the greatest beauties in the world?

by Anonymousreply 7November 11, 2021 2:05 PM

Wow !

by Anonymousreply 8November 11, 2021 2:07 PM

I lay awake all night. Then, as the sun was rising, I heard a light knock at the door. It was Vivien, tears rolling down her face. I told her not to wake Peter — my sense of responsibility raising its silly head —because a car would be arriving to take him to the SHE studio in an hour.

Asked me to go to her suite, where she explained that it wasn't Peter she loved, but Larry — who she felt was slipping away from her. She was jealous of what Peter and I had. She wanted a child with Larry. She said she never meant to hurt me.

Her complicated explanations made me want to shout that she had played with my husband. What did I care if Larry had become indifferent to her?

But then I heard the studio car arrive to pick up Peter. Within five minutes, he had washed and dressed, and slipped away with a cheery goodbye, saying to me: 'Look after her, will you? See you tonight' as if nothing had happened and all could be forgotten now he had made his choice clear to us both that he would stand by me.

I envied Vivien the power her vulnerability gave her. Oh, to be a helpless woman whom everyone protects and looks after. Yet there I was, deeply wounded, with a child to look after, tired, terrified my marriage was on the rocks, lonely and losing my confidence —and it was somehow expected that I would cope.

The next day I went shopping for a new, glamorous wardrobe — and had my frizzy hair cut short the way actress Ava Gardner wore hers. I had decided to stay in Hollywood and assert my rights as a wife — and, above all, try desperately to compete with the glamorous, cunning, skilful, charming, devastating Vivien Leigh.

by Anonymousreply 9November 11, 2021 2:10 PM

R3 Bipolar is not an excuse for hurting and ruing other people's lives.

by Anonymousreply 10November 11, 2021 2:12 PM

Homewrecker Troll back in action

by Anonymousreply 11November 11, 2021 2:13 PM

Eventually, Peter put me out of my misery by explaining how the affair had begun. He told me Vivien had started it by coming into his bed when they were filming in Ceylon —a story that was backed up by others who had been around.

I wanted to believe him —wanted to save our marriage — so I decided to try to put the affair behind us.

We continued to live in the same compound as Vivien, but her moods and mental state became increasingly unpredictable and made life hell. Peter took refuge in drink, staying out until the early hours — and I was left to cope with the pain of trying to deal with the aftermath of the affair, as well as Vivien's increasingly erratic behaviour.

She was diagnosed as manic depressive and a nurse was employed to stop her hurting herself and others. Even so, one day she tried to attack me with a knife. She cut up all my clothes when I was out and attempted to throw herself out of the window. On another occasion, she took an over-dose and tried to drown herself.

But she was not just a victim worthy of some pity. She could be incredibly cruel, too.

She laughed at my appearance — particularly the length of my nose — and told me that, though Peter was mine for now, she would get him in the end.

by Anonymousreply 12November 11, 2021 2:14 PM

What a drama queen

by Anonymousreply 13November 11, 2021 2:15 PM

Yes, Vivien Leigh was bipolar but she was a selfish, cruel and homewrecking cunt who didn't care whom she hurt or stepped on to get what she wants. This has nothing to do with her disorder. That's how she really was.

But of course, people are giving her all kind of excuses because she was beautiful and talented.

by Anonymousreply 14November 11, 2021 2:19 PM

R14 it has everything to do with it. I know someone who is bp, a raging cunt is who you turn in to. WTF do you think mental illnesses do to you, just make you mumble to yourself and and talk to the wall and be eccentric?

by Anonymousreply 15November 11, 2021 2:22 PM

Exhausting. Should have been locked up.

by Anonymousreply 16November 11, 2021 2:25 PM

Elephant Walk is a cool movie, but it ended up starring Elizabeth Taylor, not Miss Leigh.

by Anonymousreply 17November 11, 2021 2:25 PM

But she was not just a victim worthy of some pity. She could be incredibly cruel, too. She laughed at my appearance — particularly the length of my nose — and told me that, though Peter was mine for now, she would get him in the end.

The pressure of living with her was so great it started to make me fear for my own sanity. In the end, she became too ill to work and was replaced on Elephant Walk by Elizabeth Taylor. Olivier arrived to take her back to London.

She was photographed at Los Angeles airport being loaded onto a plane on a stretcher, with her arms strapped to the sides. Daily reports from London described how she had been subjected to electro-convulsive therapy and packed in ice — another form of shock therapy.

Once filming on Elephant Walk was finished, we left for London, too. There, tortured by Vivien's comments about my looks, I underwent cosmetic surgery to make my nose smaller. When the swelling had disappeared, I felt like a woman on the threshold of a new life.

But then the call came. It was now six months since Vivien's breakdown and she was pre-paring to star in a Terence Rattigan play, South Sea Bubble. An invitation came for us to attend the premiere.

Peter said it would be bad form not to go. He assured me that everything was in the past, forgotten and forgiven, but his hand shook in mine as we entered Vivien's dressing room.

by Anonymousreply 18November 11, 2021 2:26 PM

The room was crowded with her illustrious friends and bursting with flowers and goodwill telegrams.

Vivien, putting her hands on my shoulders, suddenly ad-dressed the crowd in a loud voice. 'I want you all to meet the most courageous girl I know. She has just had an operation on her nose to try to look more glamorous. I think she is wonderful.'

Her friends were embarrassed, and when Peter hugged me, Vivien ignored us for the rest of the evening.

But the next day she telephoned to invite us both to Notley Abbey — the Oliviers' country retreat. Peter insisted we went so as not to offend Sir Laurence. Sipping drinks with Noel Coward and other guests, Vivien shone as a hostess and it was hard to believe she'd ever been ill.

However, it wasn't long be-fore she was calling for Peter to come to Notley all the time — and my invitations ceased. I found it hard to believe that they were 'carrying on' with Olivier there, but Peter's erratic behaviour EVENTUALLY, suggested otherwise.

Peter's guilt about what he was doing to Anita and me, and his inability to live with or without Vivien's constant attentions led us to separate and finally divorce.

Ironically enough, as our relationship ended, their affair cooled. Peter then had numerous affairs with other women, which were written about in the papers but always denied by him. I had hoped that somehow we would be able to salvage our relationship one day — but slowly I realized nothing could be done.

Peter and I may have been just a passing drama in Vivien Leigh's troubled life, but we both paid a high price for her capricious affections.

by Anonymousreply 19November 11, 2021 2:30 PM

Not to excuse her behaviour, but I've known a few people with bipolar who are like this, I'm not sure as to how much control they have over what they do though.

by Anonymousreply 20November 11, 2021 2:31 PM

Oh please. He wrecked his own marriage.

by Anonymousreply 21November 11, 2021 2:31 PM

[quote]Another thread from this wretched troll and her million threads a day about nothing actresses from a hundred years ago. Get help, OP.

Kindly, fuck off. And stop policing threads. No one asked you to use your OCD for that tiresome purpose.

by Anonymousreply 22November 11, 2021 2:32 PM

[quote] Peter Finch's first wife, ballerina Tamara Finch — now 87 and living in Spain

She died 4 years ago.

by Anonymousreply 23November 11, 2021 2:32 PM

VL was made to look much haggier for Streetcar. IRL she looked much better. Maybe she wasn't the most desired but she still had it. Enough for Brando to self admitedly want to fuck her (I bet he probably did but didn't want to piss off Larry). Anyway this was her the year Streetcar was released.

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by Anonymousreply 24November 11, 2021 2:33 PM

OP, could you try lathering at at least one fucking LIVING whore? For fuck's sake, whaddya do for fun? Attend the funerals of strangers and then lick their tombstone or something? BASTA!

by Anonymousreply 25November 11, 2021 2:36 PM

Tamara Finch died in 2017 at the age of 98

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by Anonymousreply 26November 11, 2021 2:39 PM

[quote] There, tortured by Vivien's comments about my looks, I underwent cosmetic surgery to make my nose smaller.

Well, on that point, maybe she should thank Vivien Leigh.

Mrs. Finch's before pic:

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by Anonymousreply 27November 11, 2021 2:42 PM

What goes around, comes around.

Vivien Leigh got her karma in the end. Larry Olivier finally got enough of her shit , grew a spine and left her. and Vivien remained a bitter miserable person till the end.

by Anonymousreply 28November 11, 2021 2:46 PM

I think Tamara looks incredibly interesting at 27. There are many more photos of her from the 1950s that show her looking even better than in that photo.

Meanwhile, Vivien looked puffy and old.

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by Anonymousreply 29November 11, 2021 2:48 PM

If these accounts are accurate, Peter Finch sounds like he was a total wimp. He was as responsible for the breakup of his marriage as was Leigh. More so, because all he had to do was grow a spine and say no. But he clearly wanted to repeatedly fuck the beautiful but crazy lady.

by Anonymousreply 30November 11, 2021 2:49 PM

Art imitating life!

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by Anonymousreply 31November 11, 2021 2:51 PM

He had no body to speak of.

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by Anonymousreply 32November 11, 2021 2:51 PM

We’re Leigh’s hands really as large as people say? She always seemed to have them covered or hidden. Was it true or just her insecurities that made her think that they were too large?

by Anonymousreply 33November 11, 2021 3:00 PM

Leigh looks very middle-aged in this photo of them leaving to shoot the film.

Apparently, in many long shots and scenes from behind, it is Leigh, not Taylor.

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by Anonymousreply 34November 11, 2021 3:03 PM

That's the same photo I posted! Mine had poor Dana Andrews cropped out, however. He looks like he was still drinking back then.

by Anonymousreply 35November 11, 2021 3:04 PM

[quote]Kindly, fuck off. And stop policing threads. No one asked you to use your OCD for that tiresome purpose.

THANK YOU! Use his own tactic . . . take a look at R1's past posts and you can see what a miserable troll this person is. For those of you who don't know how to do this, simply ignore R1's post, then go and click on the Ignored tab and read everything this moron spews out of his overworked little brain. Don't let trolls like him intimidate folks who just want to enjoy the threads on this site.

by Anonymousreply 36November 11, 2021 3:04 PM

Larry Olivier, Peter Finch and Vivien

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by Anonymousreply 37November 11, 2021 3:06 PM

Until I read R36, I hadn't noticed that there was no R1 visible to me on this thread, so I had clearly blocked them from some other thread. I love the block feature!

by Anonymousreply 38November 11, 2021 3:07 PM

R10 You’re right R10, it’s not an excuse, but it is an explanation. According to the bio I read of VL (Anne Edwards?) She began her affair with Finch long before when he toured with the Iviers in some plays they did in rep. Also, Vivian never got ad far as a stonily shoot for Elephant Walk. She’d had a massive breakdown while on location, was transported to the UK for treatment and Elizabeth Taylor was flown in as a last minute replacement.

by Anonymousreply 39November 11, 2021 3:14 PM
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by Anonymousreply 40November 11, 2021 3:16 PM

Gosh, Peter Finch's jawline was practically nonexistent.

by Anonymousreply 41November 11, 2021 3:18 PM

It's impossible to know where the mental illness ends and genuine cuntery begins when it comes to Vivien. Peter Finch must have had some big problems of his own to excuse her behavior as much as he apparently did. Olivier seems to have regarded it as an illness and a curse, while Finch seemed to think of it as either no big deal or mere eccentricity.

by Anonymousreply 42November 11, 2021 3:22 PM

Al three look horrible in R37's pic. Shows even good looking people can sometimes take a bad pic.

by Anonymousreply 43November 11, 2021 3:22 PM

Laurence Olivier talking about Vivien and Peter Finch (From Laurence Olivier' book "Confession of an actor"):

For a while I had had a small but growing sense of worry. Vivien, who had always chosen her work carefully and wisely, had recently become enthusiastic about an idea for a job which I felt to be a most unwise choice - an undistinguished melodrama to be located in Ceylon, and shot at the end of January 1953.

The producers had suggested that I might consider taking the male lead opposite her in the film; Vivien asked, was I sure I wouldn't like to? It was a safe enough question, I realized, knowing as she did that not only was I against the project, but also that I had ahead of me the sixteen weeks needed by any producer for editing, post-synching, scoring, dubbing, final colour-matching, titling and negative cutting of The Beggar's Opera.

When, almost without pause, she said that in that case none other than Peter Finch would be her leading man, the penny dropped, and it dropped with the knell of a high-pitched chapel bell.

I remember Alex Korda chuckling when he recalled our recent three-way discussion concerning Vivien's future 'Forgive me, dear Larry, but I nearly had to laugh when I asked her who was to be her leading man and she said, "Peter Finch", in that incredibly off-handed way - I mean, really! It was the only truly bad performance I've ever seen her give.

by Anonymousreply 44November 11, 2021 3:28 PM

It seemed hardly two minutes before my peace was shattered. This first crusade was cut into very sharply after two days. Irving Asher, a friend of long standing and the producer in Ceylon, called Cecil Tennant in a state of great panic; Vivien's conduct was making the work on the film quite impossible.

She showed no vestige of her habitual discipline and was impossible to reason with - could Larry for Chrissakes come over and do something?

I was anxious to see the state of the union for myself, and so, knowing the hopelessness of my quest, I got limply on to a Comet and flew from Paris as directly as you then could: Rome, Beirut, Bahrain and into Colombo.

It seemed hardly two minutes before my peace was shattered. This first crusade was cut into very sharply after two days. Irving Asher, a friend of long standing and the producer in Ceylon, called Cecil Tennant in a state of great panic; Vivien's conduct was making the work on the film quite impossible.

She showed no vestige of her habitual discipline and was impossible to reason with - could Larry for Chrissakes come over and do something?

I was anxious to see the state of the union for myself, and so, knowing the hopelessness of my quest, I got limply on to a Comet and flew from Paris as directly as you then could: Rome, Beirut, Bahrain and into Colombo.

Sweet little Ethel, Vivien's maid, upset and distracted with terror, told me that so far Vivien and Peter had not been to bed but had lain together all night in the open on the hillsides.

I could find no blame in my heart for Peter - was he not simply doing what I had done to her first husband seventeen years ago?

I found it pretty old-fashioned to work up any extra feelings of outrage on account of my being his boss from whom he had been able to glean a very nice career, thank you; besides, I had always liked him, and in the strangest of ways, just then, the utter confusion of the mess in which we found ourselves seemed to dispel hostility

The humiliation of hanging around in Ceylon would have been quite enough to send me packing without any special application of common sense.

My 'mission' had been as futile as any fool would have known that it would be. I'd arrived on Tuesday, the 17th, and having expressed my regrets to Asher and wished him all the luck that he needed - which was a super-abundance of it - I got myself on to a plane early on the Friday morning and was in Paris on the Saturday afternoon.

by Anonymousreply 45November 11, 2021 3:34 PM

Thank you, OP. This is a wonderful thread!

by Anonymousreply 46November 11, 2021 3:41 PM

And great title, by the way.

by Anonymousreply 47November 11, 2021 3:41 PM

Many bi-polar people suffer from extreme sexual mania at times. I think it's pretty obvious Vivien went through many whorish periods.

by Anonymousreply 48November 11, 2021 3:42 PM

Great star, great beauty, great whateverthefuck! If that had been me, MY man, and MY child? That bitch would have been bald headed, hysterical in some corner tryna untangle her tits from around her neck!

by Anonymousreply 49November 11, 2021 3:58 PM

When Vivi made that "trying to look more glamorous" comment, Tamara should have replied with a sweet smile: "I can hardly think of glamour since becoming a MOTHER. May you one day know the joy..."

by Anonymousreply 50November 11, 2021 4:11 PM

Oh, Viv...great gal. We straight men have nothin against nymphomaniacs. Even a lowly cabbie like moi gets a chance at bat. Yeah, great gal.

by Anonymousreply 51November 11, 2021 4:25 PM

What was Leigh's childhood like? Was she sent away to boarding school at a young age?

by Anonymousreply 52November 11, 2021 4:38 PM

R52, she was a whoor, she was adopted, and she had cockroaches in. her. HAIR.

by Anonymousreply 53November 11, 2021 5:01 PM

Friends commenting on Vivien Leigh and Peter Finch's relationship (From Sir Larry : The Life of Laurence Olivier):

Maxine Audley knew Finch said "Peter was kind of helpless — putty in her hands. He would do anything she wanted. If she rang him up he would drop everything and go to her. But he was a fairly weak character — an angel, a darling man, no evil in him — She could do anything with him.'

Another member of the cast suggested the reason:" Finch was like a second Larry for her, but a Larry she felt she didn't have to measure up to. In fact she could treat Finch with a slight condescension, which made her feel superior to him and gave her a sense of power and authority she never had with Larry. Finch took it all because he was in love with her. He accepted the position he was in—a kind of pawn between Viv and Larry.

Larry was no longer friendly with him, nor did he play the outraged cuckold. He apparently accepted and then simply ignored the whole thing. He knew he had to live with Vivien. Of course, Viv was still not beyond using Finch to taunt Larry. She wasn't in love with Finch; she just loved the idea of him always being there when she wanted him."

Finch maintained that the affair only began in Ceylon, and Trader Faulkner has said that Vivien was ‘the greatest influence’ in his life, that when the situation became really grave he threatened suicide in order to ‘blot out the whole bloody business once and for all’," and that after Vivien his life began to spiral downwards.

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by Anonymousreply 54November 11, 2021 5:32 PM
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by Anonymousreply 55November 11, 2021 5:48 PM

I don't buy the portrayal of Finch as merely weak. He was ambitious and unscrupulous. And Vivien felt entitled to call to his home in the early hours while his wife and small child were there. They had clearly already begun an affair.

by Anonymousreply 56November 11, 2021 6:00 PM

R56 Leigh was crazy so showing up at their home in the middle of the night didn't necessarily mean they'd started an affair.

by Anonymousreply 57November 11, 2021 6:03 PM

R32, Peter Finch had a naturally fine masculine body. He was quite handsome, as well.

by Anonymousreply 58November 11, 2021 6:04 PM

There is nothing that screams "frau" more than giving a shit about "homewrecking."

by Anonymousreply 59November 11, 2021 6:04 PM

Peter Finch was an attractive man. He even looked better as he got older.

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by Anonymousreply 60November 11, 2021 6:18 PM

[post redacted because linking to dailymail.co.uk clearly indicates that the poster is either a troll or an idiot (probably both, honestly.) Our advice is that you just ignore this poster but whatever you do, don't click on any link to this putrid rag.]

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by Anonymousreply 61November 11, 2021 6:42 PM

I never knew that a woman could be so ruthless and self-serving. I'm baffled by our Viv's near demonic behavior!

by Anonymousreply 62November 11, 2021 7:20 PM

I'm skeptical that Olivier fell in love with Plowright.

by Anonymousreply 63November 11, 2021 7:25 PM

She’s been portrayed as a victim of her illness for so long.

But I’m obsessed with the hands. I need to see them.

by Anonymousreply 64November 11, 2021 7:37 PM

Have at 'em.

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by Anonymousreply 65November 11, 2021 7:40 PM

OMG r65, the length of the palms.

by Anonymousreply 66November 11, 2021 7:42 PM

She sounds like a lunatic stalker.

by Anonymousreply 67November 11, 2021 7:52 PM

It's true that Vivien's extreme promiscuity and nymphomaniac behavior were symptoms of her illness But her cruelty, selfish, serial homewrecking actions and having no consideration for other people's feelings, simply ruining families because she felt entitled, were just part of her ugly nature.

by Anonymousreply 68November 11, 2021 8:00 PM

Didn't she also suffer from nymphomania and neurosyphilis? That's why all the crazy stuff.

by Anonymousreply 69November 11, 2021 8:00 PM

Vivien had no feelings for her daughter Suzanne at all:

"During these years she was hardly ever alone with her mother, who, though she would remember the birthday of every member of the cast of a play she was in, was capable of forgetting that of her own daughter. From her Switzerland finishing school, Suzanne wrote to Vivien that she was “simply aching” to see her again, “also for a chat”. Vivien merely sent the letters to Leigh Holman, commenting: “They’re so sweet & funny.”

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by Anonymousreply 70November 11, 2021 8:04 PM

Vivien Leigh stalking and deliberately bumping into Larry Olivier and his then wife Jill Esmond during a private family trip to Capri.

Their body language is very telling.

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by Anonymousreply 71November 11, 2021 8:18 PM

That pic of Jill Esmond... She could not look more gay. I suspect she wasn't all that gone for Larry.

by Anonymousreply 72November 11, 2021 8:37 PM

Jill was rumored to be a lesbian, wasn’t she?

by Anonymousreply 73November 11, 2021 8:40 PM

Google is my friend…

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by Anonymousreply 74November 11, 2021 8:41 PM

Who was holding Olivier's hand?

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by Anonymousreply 75November 11, 2021 8:44 PM

[Quote] The play featured multiple gay characters and a former lover of Jill’s, Phyllis Konstam, would later say, “Night after night they were speaking lines and creating characters that mirrored their own private lives. She preferred women to men. He was, at the very least, bisexual. They must have known that the marriage could never last

One wonders if Larry appreciated those cabbies taking on his husbandly duties by fucking Viv.

by Anonymousreply 76November 11, 2021 8:48 PM

Elephant Walk with Vivien Leigh

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by Anonymousreply 77November 11, 2021 8:53 PM

Have to admit that Liz was obscenely beautiful in this film…

by Anonymousreply 78November 11, 2021 8:56 PM

Yeah, Liz was beautiful in it but the movie was ridiculous.

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by Anonymousreply 79November 11, 2021 9:01 PM

What did Esmond do after her last acting role in 1955?

by Anonymousreply 80November 11, 2021 9:30 PM

Jill Esmond died in 1990 (just one year after Olivier's death in 1989)

"To the end of his life, Olivier continued alimony payments to Esmond. Esmond kept in touch with Olivier, and in a letter to their son Tarquin, said "It's funny after all that time how I can still love him so much." Frail and in a wheelchair, she attended Olivier's memorial service in October 1989 at Westminster Abbey."

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by Anonymousreply 81November 11, 2021 10:14 PM

[Quote] "It's funny after all that time how I can still love him so much."

It's so much easier to love someone by cheque.

by Anonymousreply 82November 11, 2021 10:16 PM

And gay men claim to not hate women..

by Anonymousreply 83November 11, 2021 10:21 PM

Lawrence Olivier And Ex Wife Jill Esmond in 1965

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by Anonymousreply 84November 11, 2021 10:22 PM

That fat thing in R70's pic is her daughter? That must've been tough.

by Anonymousreply 85November 11, 2021 10:25 PM

She aged well! She looks similar to (but better than) Joan Plowright, even at that age.

by Anonymousreply 86November 11, 2021 10:27 PM

Laurence Olivier and Jill Esmond, arriving at St Mary's Church for the wedding of their son Tarquin Olivier, in Chelsea, London, January 8th 1965

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by Anonymousreply 87November 11, 2021 10:32 PM

Do we have any names of the guys Olivier supposedly fucked? That would be more interesting to read than Viv's homewrecking tales.

by Anonymousreply 88November 11, 2021 10:33 PM

Vivien Leigh attending the wedding of Tarquin Olivier - 1965

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by Anonymousreply 89November 11, 2021 10:35 PM

Pretty handsome guy, Tarquin. In this article, he addresses (and contradicts) the gay stories about his father, though how much he would really know of it I can't be sure.

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by Anonymousreply 90November 11, 2021 10:36 PM

Younger Tarquin.

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by Anonymousreply 91November 11, 2021 10:37 PM

The "Joanne Woodward is a homewrecker" troll is baaaaaaack.

by Anonymousreply 92November 11, 2021 10:38 PM

R88 I read somewhere Danny Kaye, no idea if true or not.

by Anonymousreply 93November 11, 2021 10:39 PM

For you, R93.

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by Anonymousreply 94November 11, 2021 10:42 PM

Vivien looked scary in this picture!

Vivien Leigh leaves St Mary's Church, Cadogan Street, Chelsea, after attending the wedding of Mr Tarquin Olivier, son of Laurence Olivier and his first wife, actress Jill Esmond.

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by Anonymousreply 95November 11, 2021 10:43 PM

Is that just lipstick or had she fucked up her mouth?

by Anonymousreply 96November 11, 2021 10:49 PM

What happened to the mini-series Tarquin was going to produce about his father and Vivien?

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by Anonymousreply 97November 11, 2021 10:53 PM

R96 Probably the lipstick

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by Anonymousreply 98November 11, 2021 10:58 PM

R96, at some point Vivien began overdrawing her lip liner to make her mouth look wider. It’s very noticeable in the last few films she made.

by Anonymousreply 99November 11, 2021 10:58 PM

Studio portrait of Vivien Leigh, 1967

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by Anonymousreply 100November 11, 2021 11:03 PM

R97 I'm not sure, but maybe Joan Plowright wasn't too happy about it?!

She sure wasn't thrilled about Larry and Viv documentary released in 2001

"Interest in the Olivier story does not fade. Only a few weeks ago, there was a biopic on Channel 4 called Larry and Viv: The Oliviers in Love. Had she seen it? 'No, I was in Bucharest.' ('In Bucharest' could be a good code for making yourself scarce.) But isn't she curious? 'No. I don't want to see it. I was asked to be in it; it was supposed to be about Olivier's acting.'

In fact, it was an attempt to disinter a great romance when both the players are dead. Tarquin, Olivier's son by his first wife, Jill Esmond, stated plainly that Vivien Leigh was the 'love of Olivier's life'.

Any ostrich would want to keep her head down and make a different programme altogether. And that is exactly what Plowright has done (the result can be seen in a BBC Omnibus, When Larry Met Joan on 3 November)."

by Anonymousreply 101November 11, 2021 11:07 PM

Strange how Joan and Tarquin both say "Olivier's" rathen than Dad/Laurence/Larry.

by Anonymousreply 102November 11, 2021 11:20 PM

John Gielgud on Vivien Leigh (from Gielgud's Letters : John Gielgud in His Own Words)

“In a very bad way. She is utterly ineffective on stage—like paper, only not so thick, no substance or power—and off stage she is haunted, avid, malicious and insatiable, a bad look-out for the future and poor Larry who is saint-like with her and play-acting most beautifully as well.”

Noel Coward on Vivien (From Noel Coward's diaries):

"Vivien was in a vile temper and perfectly idiotic. Larry was bowed down with grief and despair and altogether it was a gloomy little visit.

Personally I think that if Larry had turned sharply on Vivien years ago and given her a clip in the chops, he would have been spared a mint of trouble. The seat of all this misery is our old friend, feminine ego. She is, and has been, thoroughly spoiled. She also has a sharp tongue and a bad temper. Fond as I am of her and sorry as I feel for her, I would like to give her a good belting, although now I fear it might push her over the edge and be far, far too late."

"Larry has left her, and I for one don't blame him; she is certainly barmy up to a point, but she has been so spoilt and pampered for so many years that the barminess becomes ugly and dull. For all her beauty and charm and sweetness, she has let Larry down for years and really tormented him. If he can succeed in breaking away, good luck to him. Women of Viv's temperament, looks and exigence can raise too much hell for themselves and everyone near them.

"Larry came here this evening for a heart-to-heart. He is in a bad state. He's madly in love with Joan Plowright and has had to tell Vivien. He obviously hates hurting her but is equally obviously determined not to go back to her. I am desperately sorry for her although it is mostly her own silly fault."

"Vivien is in despair about Larry leaving her. I had a long quiet session with her. She was very pathetic and perfectly sane and sweet, and I feel that the shock of Larry packing up and going may have done her a power of good. It is difficult to resist her charm and pathos when she turns them on. I cannot understand why she should be surprised at Larry popping off" after all the ghastly scenes. Personally I think he will eventually go back to her, although he swears he won't."

"Vivien has appeared in London and is busily employed in making a cracking ass of herself, as I suspected, and looks ghastly. What has driven her round the bend again is the demon alcohol; this is what it has always been. I suspect there is far less genuine mental instability about it than most people seem to think.

I went to see her 'alone' and found the flat full of people. She arrived from Notley, where she had been insulting the new owners. She was almost inarticulate with drink and spitting vitriol about everyone and everything. The next morning she called me at 8.30 and said she wanted to see me alone, and I refused flatly and said I didn't want to speak to her so long as she continued behaving like that, whereupon she said 'Oh God!' and hung up, and that's the end of that.

I have a dreadful suspicion that all this disgraceful carry-on is really a vino Veritas condition! She has always been spoilt and when she fails to get her own way she takes to the bottle and goes berserk. Of course I am fond of her and of course I am sorry for her, but however upset she may be about Larry she should control herself and behave better. It's all her own fault anyhow and I am now abysmally bored with the whole situation. It has been going on for far too long and I'll have no more of it"

by Anonymousreply 103November 11, 2021 11:44 PM

R50 Vivirn Leigh was a mother. She had a daughter named Suzanne with her first husband just as Larry had a son named Tarquin with his first wife.

by Anonymousreply 104November 12, 2021 12:03 AM

Noel Coward greets Vivien Leigh and Laurence Olivier in the lobby of The New Theatre. 1965

Vivien looks deranged in the photo.

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by Anonymousreply 105November 12, 2021 12:42 AM

Didn't Nicola Paget have mental illness as well?

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by Anonymousreply 106November 12, 2021 12:45 AM

R79, my favorite part is when the elephants invaded the mansion and they kill the majordomo, Apuhami…

by Anonymousreply 107November 12, 2021 12:49 AM

R107 Hahaaa, Enjoy!

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by Anonymousreply 108November 12, 2021 12:55 AM

R95's pic....it's Viv startled by the photographer, saying to him "Excuse me, but you look very familiar. Have we fucked?"

by Anonymousreply 109November 12, 2021 1:33 AM


by Anonymousreply 110November 12, 2021 1:37 AM

R106, apparently Nicola suffered from bipolar affective disorder, the same condition Vivien had. Like Vivien Nicola Pagett was born outside of the UK and spent her childhood abroad, returning to England when she was enrolled at a Catholic boarding school. I would be interested to know how Nicola got on with Vivien given these parallels, but as we have seen Leigh could be very bitchy and cruel to other women.

by Anonymousreply 111November 12, 2021 4:11 AM

r109 I use that line all the time. It never fails to entertain.

by Anonymousreply 112November 12, 2021 4:30 AM
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