brief conversation with Jane West (Jo)
I was a mother of a three year old when I did One Summer which was pretty amazing. And I remember having incredible memories of the crew. David was just absolutely lovely. I remember when we first met he was so nervous. I knew there was a love scene in it and what he didn't realise at the time was I was just as nervous as him. I pretended I wasn't, to make him feel better.
How did you get involved? What was the casting process like?
I remember being 23, and I knew they wanted somebody younger so I went in a little jean skirt. Even though I did look younger than 23 I think, when you've got a child you automatically think you seem older. So I went in there with the attitude of well I've got to be young. I remember sitting there with my hands underneath my knees - ok this must make me look younger, I'm not going to cross my legs.
So I got it and I remember that Gordon Flemyng was just absolutely charming, he was a really nice guy. Then going up to Yorkshire, and the crew were fantastic, I loved the crew, I used to hang out with them. The times that I was there it was like a big family, down to even the hotel that we stayed in, the people in the hotel were lovely. It was fantastic, and after we did a days work we would go back and we would have a glass of wine. It was just so great.
We kind of did the episodes out of sequence, and I don't think I had all the scripts at the time. They handed me the last episode where I fall in the water, and I said 'I can't swim!'. I remember Gordon Flemyng looking at me and saying, what do you mean you can't swim? I replied, I can't swim! I can't fall in the water kissing David. I can't swim, I'm going to drown! And he said ok, that's it, you've got to go back and you've got to learn how to swim. So they gave me private swimming lessons. And even in that scene now, you've got to go back and watch this, you'll hear me go *sharp intake of breathe* because it was so bloody cold - it was freezing freezing cold, and all the crew were in their anoraks and welly boots and there was David and I in our undies basically. So it was freezing cold and we were on the jetty and as we fall in I'm thinking, David you better hold me because if you don't I'm going to drown. Being that cold, when your body hit the water you instantly froze. The crew had to pull us out, especially me out of the water because I was literally purple. Before we did the scene I said to Gordon Flemyng, 'hey maybe as the director you'd like to show us exactly how it's done', and he said - 'not likely, I'm not getting in there!'. We ended up finding a local house that let us use the bath because it was so muddy in there and cold. I remember sitting in this tepid water and it hurt, my body was so frozen just from that one quick scene.
So I take it that was in one take, you didn't have to go for it multiple times?
I think probably with Gordon Flemyng hearing me gasp he was like - ok I don't think she can take any more. So as far as I remember we did it in one.
One of the people I would have loved to talk to but can't is Gordon Flemyng. I'm interested to get your take on him.
From what I remember of Gordon Flemyng, I remember him telling me stories. This story I hesitate to tell, because part of this story I might not have got all right, but I can only tell you from what I remember. I remember him telling me a story that he turned the Beatles down one time. He told me he interviewed the Beatles but told them they were no good. I remember him laughing as he told me this story. (This was probably while casting for the 1963 teen musical Just for Fun )
I remember being fascinated by him because I think he was a little eccentric. But I remember looking at him and thinking he's such an interesting person to be around. He was kind of eccentric - you didn't know if he was telling you the truth or not! The stories were so over the top, and yet they really weren't. I remember him calling me his movie star or his little star or something like that.
I do remember David being absolutely petrified to do this love scene and sitting in the bus and having a talk about it. I was like 'ah - come on David it's going to be a piece of cake, it's no big deal'. I remember my heart's beating out of my chest thinking oh shit - this is really bad news. I was petrified, but I was the big girl and had to be the brave one.
Of course that was the first ever professional job that David had done.
Yeah - and he was very lovely. You know they clear the set. The only people that could be there were the cameraman and the director. I think maybe the makeup person was there but that was it.
Well you were topless at a certain point but other than that
Yeah but you can't see anything can you on there?
No - although I noticed that there were a couple of guys who had 20 years old memories that wishfully imagined that they did.
I know, I know! I remember seeing that on the website and I'm thinking - hello - you didn't see my boobs on there! Isn't that typical of men though. And then they mention my white outfit that was see-through - I remember that.
Did you stop acting when you moved to America?
No - I've done work, I do a lot of voiceovers. But most of my thing right now is I write - I'm writing a sitcom right now. So I write and I'm doing children's books.
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