The influence of your parents (8 replies and 3 comments)
Apologies if this question is too personal, but wondering if you could say something about the influence of your parents on your life/work.
I believe you've said your father was a builder and mother an actress (although I understand she passed away when you were young)? What kind of builder was your father? Did he have an interest in the arts/literature?
My father had an ironmongers shop and did some residential building work. No, he had little interest in film or 'the arts' in general. I'm sure he hoped I would take over the family business up until his retirement. He visited my wife and I in LA one time before he passed away and I think it was only then that he really understood what I was doing with my life. My mother was a model before the war when she joined the WRACs. But, of course, that was way before my time!
As a matter of interest, where was your dads shop, Market St TQ ?
Is that shop still in operation?
Was there ever a time where you considered taking over the family business?
No, my father retired sold the shop. I think it became a clothing store after that. I never considered taking on the business.
While we’ve got you on the subject, was your Dad’s shop in Market st Torquay?
Like Blacksmiths, Ironmongers were the backbone of towns and villages and commanded much influence, the proprietor would have had many contacts including the building trade and the mayor’s office. Was a good business to go in years ago.
My father has always been supportive in everything I settled down to, in all my beginnings. I do not remember that he ever tried to enforce his views. He respects my choices. I guess this only happened when I was in school and he always reminded me that need to do my homework in 6 hours», was scared that I will not catch up with studies.
I should say that it was actually my dad who first introduced me to film when I was probably 4 or 5 years old. He had 'obtained' a small projector and he set this up in the attic among his other wartime effects, a German Luger pistol and a bomber jacket being others I remember. At that time, in the 1950's and before TV, you could rent a reel of a cartoon film from the local post office. I think my favorite was called 'Felix goes to the Moon' and I must have seen that short cartoon over 20 times. Choices were very few but that experience and those images have stayed with me. Magic!
This is getting interesting. Did your father join the RAF? Luger pistol?? Perhaps he was a POW having bailed out. Would like to hear more please.
I tried finding that Felix cartoon, I’d like to see it.
Do you feel the ‘artistic’ side of your personality, the side interested in books, films and ideas, came from your mother?
I never had chance to know my mother. My genes maybe!
My father was with the Royal Engineers in France before (and for a while after) Dunkirk then he was with the Long Range Desert Group. He was an explosives expert who help immobilize railways and airfields behind German lines in N Africa. As a member of the SAS he went into Sicily to disable the enemy guns before the allied invasion. A pretty eventful war!