Romeo And Juliet Laurence Harvey Susan Shentall

Jan Leeming

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Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.

ROMEO AND JULIET - Laurence Harvey & Susan Shentall

Date: 16th January 2013

Romeo and Juliet – Laurence Harvey and Susan Shentall

Among my Christmas presents from my sister was a DVD of the 1954 film ‘Romeo and Juliet’ starring Laurence Harvey and Susan Shentall. An odd choice of gift you might think. But it has many memories attached to it and my sister and I have often laughed at the recollection.

It must have been doing a second round of the cinemas because I can’t believe I would have taken a four year old to the cinema with me. I was mad about the theatre, Shakespeare and a fan of Laurence Harvey and for some unaccountable reason I took my little sister (she couldn’t have been much more than 8 years old) and I loved it so much, we sat through it twice. Our mother was going mad with worry and I got a sound smacking when we got home and wasn’t allowed to go to the cinema again for a month – this really was a very hard punishment in the days when there was no television or other form of entertainment beside the cinema.

I watched it last night and, of course, found it very dated although the Italian scenery  was absolutely stunning.  Then I went onto the internet and was staggered to read that Laurence Harvey died in the 70’s at the relatively young age of 45. I was also amazed to see his list of cinema and tv credits – a prolific worker indeed. Susan Shentall was, apparently, a secretary whom the director thought would be good in the part. There wasn’t much about her on the Internet and maybe she had been trained at acting school and was just doing a filler job! She was adequate in the part and I wasn’t surprised to read that after the film she married and never performed again.

Dame Flora Robson made a very good 'nurse' and I rather liked Mervyn John's portrayal of the Friar but there were other parts which were obviously played by local Italians and it was obvious from the lip sinc.

Just another useless bit of information to share with you. Jan

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