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Bowler Hats and Kinky Boots: The Ultimate Avengers Book
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Will we finally discover whether those casting sessions for season six were a sham (and a waste of film) as Clemens alleges?
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MikeR
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mrs_emma_peel wrote:
Your book sounds and looks absolutely splendid Mike - a gold mine of meticulously researched Avengers information -
looking forward to pre-ordering my copy Smile
James


The discussions over on Brit Movie sometime ago regarding Mrs Peel mark one and The Town of No Return prompted me to look further and I do know what was the straw that broke the camel's back, that brought about Elizabeth Shepherd's dismissal.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 10:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
Will we finally discover whether those casting sessions for season six were a sham (and a waste of film) as Clemens alleges?


Frankie, by this time Brian and Albert knew they were leaving the series and as such they had nothing to do with the auditions to find Diana's replacement.

In the book I talk about the auditions that exist without sound and the auditions that no longer exist, but paperwork indicates who was tested. My understanding is that the auditions were under the control of John Bryce.

As for who was chosen, I've followed the official paperwork that the auditions were submitted to the American ABC network, who were obviously exerting some influence on events at this point and they chose Linda.
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mousemeat
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 12:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
Will we finally discover whether those casting sessions for season six were a sham (and a waste of film) as Clemens alleges?


would be nice to get to the bottom of all the rumours and some
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MikeR
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 1:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mousemeat wrote:
Frankymole wrote:
Will we finally discover whether those casting sessions for season six were a sham (and a waste of film) as Clemens alleges?


would be nice to get to the bottom of all the rumours and some


I have never seen anything on official documentation where John Bryce voiced his preference for the actress he wanted as Diana's replacement. Though I'm certain that after the auditions, he obviously knew who he wanted, but with so much riding on the outcome, I cannot see ABC Television Films and the Associated British Picture Corporation going to the trouble of arranging auditions (which are surprisingly quite expensive), if they already knew who was going to get the part. They might just as well have awarded the role to the actress they wanted.
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MikeR wrote:
mrs_emma_peel wrote:
Your book sounds and looks absolutely splendid Mike - a gold mine of meticulously researched Avengers information -
looking forward to pre-ordering my copy Smile
James


The discussions over on Brit Movie sometime ago regarding Mrs Peel mark one and The Town of No Return prompted me to look further and I do know what was the straw that broke the camel's back, that brought about Elizabeth Shepherd's dismissal.
Rodney Marshall's told us that by PM - almost from the horse's mouth given his dad's place in the creative/production team Smile
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MikeR wrote:
Frankymole wrote:
Will we finally discover whether those casting sessions for season six were a sham (and a waste of film) as Clemens alleges?


Frankie, by this time Brian and Albert knew they were leaving the series and as such they had nothing to do with the auditions to find Diana's replacement.

In the book I talk about the auditions that exist without sound and the auditions that no longer exist, but paperwork indicates who was tested. My understanding is that the auditions were under the control of John Bryce.

As for who was chosen, I've followed the official paperwork that the auditions were submitted to the American ABC network, who were obviously exerting some influence on events at this point and they chose Linda.
Yes, but Brian Clemens said Thorson only got the role because she was Bryce's girlfriend at the time. I just never really bought that, since so many auditions/screen tests were done (with costly actors' time for the "Steeds", the cost of the film stock and developing the film all of which were unnecessary if it really was a "casting couch" decision or a kind of favouritism as Clemens alleges.
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MikeR
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 3:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
MikeR wrote:
mrs_emma_peel wrote:
Your book sounds and looks absolutely splendid Mike - a gold mine of meticulously researched Avengers information -
looking forward to pre-ordering my copy Smile
James


The discussions over on Brit Movie sometime ago regarding Mrs Peel mark one and The Town of No Return prompted me to look further and I do know what was the straw that broke the camel's back, that brought about Elizabeth Shepherd's dismissal.
Rodney Marshall's told us that by PM - almost from the horse's mouth given his dad's place in the creative/production team Smile


My information on this comes indirectly from Ray Austin, although I have heard a couple of taped interviews with Liz Shepherd where she gives her version of events and so I have been able to include her view on it all as well and include a quote by Albert Fennell regarding the situation.
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 4:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MikeR wrote:

My information on this comes indirectly from Ray Austin, although I have heard a couple of taped interviews with Liz Shepherd where she gives her version of events and so I have been able to include her view on it all as well and include a quote by Albert Fennell regarding the situation.
Ray's not likely to be unbiased though is he, given that he's effectively one of the two, er (I can't say "responsible") interested parties? Wouldn't Fennell's statement be closer to the party line than the seamier reality?
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 4:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
MikeR wrote:

My information on this comes indirectly from Ray Austin, although I have heard a couple of taped interviews with Liz Shepherd where she gives her version of events and so I have been able to include her view on it all as well and include a quote by Albert Fennell regarding the situation.
Ray's not likely to be unbiased though is he, given that he's effectively one of the two, er (I can't say "responsible") interested parties? Wouldn't Fennell's statement be closer to the party line than the seamier reality?


The quote I have from Albert (and quotes from Albert Fennell are extremely rare) is some advice he gave to Liz Shepherd regarding her behaviour on the series. Unfortunately, I cannot say had she followed it that she would have remained with the series, but there would have been more chance of her remaining with The Avengers.

By her own admission, she wanted to play Emma Peel and have input into The Avengers, as you'll see in the book, she went about some of this in completely the wrong way.
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 4:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That isn't the actual reason she had to be "let go" though, was it? We can't say too much publicly but as PM'd it was more about an inappropriate personal liaison with a certain member of the production team... PM Rodney for more...
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 5:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
That isn't the actual reason she had to be "let go" though, was it? We can't say too much publicly but as PM'd it was more about an inappropriate personal liaison with a certain member of the production team... PM Rodney for more...


I honestly did not know anything regarding this, but I do not think that it would be a good idea for me to publish anything like that in a book, for legal reasons. During in my research I have come across one or two other situations that I cannot or dare not publish. Thus, unless I can provided solid evidence from say a newspaper or trade publication such as Kine Weekly published during the sixties, I would not take the risk of getting sued.

However, because of its secret nature this area of The Avengers is obviously quite facinating.
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 5:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good point, wouldn't want another "Avengers Dossier" pulping incident!! Anyway the party line is the official line so there's no harm in relating it. Clemens's allegations of Linda Thorson's casting process take on a whole new dimension when you consider the earlier incident though Smile
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 5:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
Good point, wouldn't want another "Avengers Dossier" pulping incident!! Anyway the party line is the official line so there's no harm in relating it. Clemens's allegations of Linda Thorson's casting process take on a whole new dimension when you consider the earlier incident though Smile


Especially not as at 810 pages and approximately 342,000 words, Bowler Hat and Kinky Boots is the biggest book that Telos Publishing have ever published.
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anti-clockwise
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 6:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MikeR wrote:
Frankymole wrote:
Good point, wouldn't want another "Avengers Dossier" pulping incident!! Anyway the party line is the official line so there's no harm in relating it. Clemens's allegations of Linda Thorson's casting process take on a whole new dimension when you consider the earlier incident though Smile


Especially not as at 810 pages and approximately 342,000 words, Bowler Hat and Kinky Boots is the biggest book that Telos Publishing have ever published.
Will this be one book? or divided into parts?
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Lhbizness
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 6:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like a very interesting book and I'm excited to read it!

I'm sure that there are lots of rumors, some true and some not, about various backstage shenanigans, as there are with any series (especially in a time period where sexism and sexuality could make "inappropriate behavior" a firing offense).

Regardless, it does sound like Thorson was ill-treated by the show, much as the women who came before her, and unfortunately mean-spirited statements that she only got the job because she was dating someone are a pretty common accusation against young actresses. Not certain that it's really important, in the end, at least in terms of the show we have.
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MikeR
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 6:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

anti-clockwise wrote:
MikeR wrote:
Frankymole wrote:
Good point, wouldn't want another "Avengers Dossier" pulping incident!! Anyway the party line is the official line so there's no harm in relating it. Clemens's allegations of Linda Thorson's casting process take on a whole new dimension when you consider the earlier incident though Smile


Especially not as at 810 pages and approximately 342,000 words, Bowler Hat and Kinky Boots is the biggest book that Telos Publishing have ever published.
Will this be one book? or divided into parts?


There are chapters devoted to each season of The Avengers and The New Avengers, plus a shorter chapter covering the radio series and stage play and a chapter for the 1998 film.

The chapters dealing with the actual seasons go through the setting up process, assembling both the cast and crew, then it lookes at each episode in production order. This can begin with early draft of the script, comments between various members of the production team and ABC Television, progressing onto actual shooting. For some Rigg and all the Thorson episodes I have day by day progress reports. For these episodes I know where the crew were on location and what they were filming, who was there - both cast and stunt doubles - what vehicles were present and in some cases what equipment was there. Likewise, if they were shooting at Elstree Studios it will give you what set they were filming on and in which soundstage.

The entries continue with casting choices, incidental music, plus as I have quite a number of scripts and so it also outlines any differences to what actually appeared on screen.
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 7:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lhbizness wrote:
Sounds like a very interesting book and I'm excited to read it!

I'm sure that there are lots of rumors, some true and some not, about various backstage shenanigans, as there are with any series (especially in a time period where sexism and sexuality could make "inappropriate behavior" a firing offense).

Regardless, it does sound like Thorson was ill-treated by the show, much as the women who came before her, and unfortunately mean-spirited statements that she only got the job because she was dating someone are a pretty common accusation against young actresses. Not certain that it's really important, in the end, at least in terms of the show we have.
Possibly, although sadly it is used as a lazy way to disparage Linda Thorson, often by Emma fans who won't even countenance discussion of other pros and cons of the series, merely dismissing her entire era because she allegedly "slept her way into the job". It's ironic if Beth Shepherd slept her way out of the job!
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 7:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
Lhbizness wrote:
Sounds like a very interesting book and I'm excited to read it!

I'm sure that there are lots of rumors, some true and some not, about various backstage shenanigans, as there are with any series (especially in a time period where sexism and sexuality could make "inappropriate behavior" a firing offense).

Regardless, it does sound like Thorson was ill-treated by the show, much as the women who came before her, and unfortunately mean-spirited statements that she only got the job because she was dating someone are a pretty common accusation against young actresses. Not certain that it's really important, in the end, at least in terms of the show we have.
Possibly, although sadly it is used as a lazy way to disparage Linda Thorson, often by Emma fans who won't even countenance discussion of other pros and cons of the series, merely dismissing her entire era because she allegedly "slept her way into the job". It's ironic if Beth Shepherd slept her way out of the job!


Well, yeah, if you want to criticize the Tara era, criticize the show or the performance or the scripts or anything else, not whether or not the actress was sleeping with a producer. It doesn't really matter, one way or the other. Though, quite honestly, I'd never heard anything about this until it was brought up on this board, and then in defense of Thorson. Most Emma fans I've known object to the character and not the actress (but I am comparatively young in the ways of this fandom.)

In general, though, Thorson seems to be the most objectified actress in the series - more discussion is laid on about whether or not she flashes her underwear or how short her skirts are than either Rigg or Blackman, both of whom had some interesting wardrobe choices over the years.
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MikeR
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 8:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mousemeat wrote:
Frankymole wrote:
Will we finally discover whether those casting sessions for season six were a sham (and a waste of film) as Clemens alleges?


would be nice to get to the bottom of all the rumours and some


Mousemeat

I just realised that you also get a thank you on book for assisting me with something (I cannot remember off the top of my head what) here on boards that went into this project.
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