« Desert Island Discs

Classic Desert Island Discs - Kathleen Turner

2021-04-18 | 🔗
Sue Lawley interviews the actor Kathleen Turner in a programme first broadcast in 2000.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Pvc sounds music. Radio broadcasts learn of indian we're, taking our east to break so until a buccaneer. Where showcasing a few programmes from our archive. As usual, the music spin shortened for rights reasons. This week's guest is the actor kathleen turner. Similarly cast her away in two thousand My causeway this week is an actress. It was just twenty years ago that she was happily pursuing her career of broadway and in american television soap. When she landed the lead in hollywood hit, it was called body heat and the character she played sexy and ruthless made her
She followed it up with other glamorous roles in film, such as preaches honour, romancing, the stone and the war of the roses. Then illness stopped her in her tracks. Rheumatoid arthritis brought constant pain and immobility. Today, she's recovered and she's back in the limelight this time in london's westland playing the seductive mrs robinson in the play of the film, the guy. Do it in it. She appears naked, a brave decision, some say for women in her mid fortis, but she has no qualms about it. There's a definitive look for women. She says which is practically fleshless. Women aren't like that. So I thought I do my. little bit for us. She is governed, you done. It is a great moment, but I can't believe you did it without a common thing to decide to do it. Well, JD, that's nice! Guy, that's downs! Much better than I am the director. And write or terry Johnson left it to me, and it just was so clear to me that the that not doing it would have been more
obtrusive and more you, no stopping of the play a real, oh. That would kick us out of the reality, whereas doing it with ample pal the whole play its quite. I went out there and I just gritted mighty then thought all right. I can do this. The funny thing was in the beginning, terry said to me: you know: there's him with an extra beat says you know you, you come out with a tap on you close it over the bedroom and then you turn and ass. His extra beat, I don't quite understand before you drop, it tallies is at a choice, is to know its knowledge. Was I'm trying to drop the tab and does it go on being difficult or has it got you know it's gotten easier is got easier, though I still love to hear the gasp of specially matinees, but you done it obviously quite a lot on film. This is more or less. The first time I think in the auto can really for asylum must be a very different experience. It solely really
it's so public. It's so unprotected it, sir, on film, when you do any kind of nudity sexual activity or something you it's so choreographed. You know exactly what the council is going to see and specifically universe, shoulder all our breasts store this hand on the file. Whatever And you have the crew down to a bare minimum. Only who has to be in that room with you and everyone is is, is terribly professional and terrible. You know, and you may do take out to take up to take, but again it so planned that you feel quite protected
nothing else is going to have nothing else arranged I mean if you ve got. If you know what you're doing a film and you have this love making seen coming up to even going to crash diet for a week or something you know, and that day you can just feel is then, as you can possibly feel, this is a chose a week. We have to feel this way every day, so lobbying much but others even cope with what about when you did. First, do it on film, as I say more than twenty years, heat. I've read stories that you as she wept in addressing more do I do. I don't know why I never woke Larry, I ll, never forget lord cousin wrote and read through body. decided that we should start the filming start the whole fill with the only entirely nude scene in the boat house. So here we worth bill standing in the inner robes in the boat house shaking in meeting the crew.
We then rehearsing for some weeks together, but we are not met and kellerman lighting, guys and oldest who just sort of all march. We proceeded to to do the most revealing scene in the whole film. While I was shaking like a leaf. I was so and then bilges march me right up to the house where we had a dressing rooms in on watch me right and it is an opened by the lines that you can drink. That said, go, I'm not! Is it all? Yes, Ok, you can be as naked. Does he like forever on this desert island? I mean nobody's going to see no problems, namely what I tell you tell me about the music. You want to play what you this choice? This is a Nancy griffith song that she does with James hooker called gulf coast highway which to me is very american and a very lyrical. I love the refrain
away yes, we saw nancy Griffith, James hooker singing gulf coast, highway body. He was the first big break as we say you done you playing off all broadway you're playing and televisions. How did you find him? How did they find you where I had? Actually, I had done. Broadway also then, and then, at the same time I was on a was on Broadway. I was doing a soap opera for and bessie and at the character was so incredibly stupid. I I find it just said to the right: maker a drunk you know, I mean I can't possibly justify these words these actions. Unless the woman is blind drunk, you know, who's gonna believe this up,
anyway. So I manage you talk my way off the soap opera out of my contract and came back to new york and Larry cousin was in town auditioning women for the role of Mary walker in embody. He now he had two male casting directors, who I think I had problem, the offended at some point by saying. Well what do you want? You know tell me, and I will do it so they were quite right In fact, they refuse to me to be seen for the raw and They said I had no film, which is quite true, had never bound film, and so there was no point in wasting MR chasms time exactly so by three months later, a female causing director female de los angeles to audition for a different film, and she said: oh, you ve got to read for Larry, I'm sorry you I've seen. Five hundred women has been for the last three months.
and they will not. They have been cast the role, so she got me in to read and glaring did he know immediately easily. He called me back the next day. And handed me a scene and said I just want a cold reading. I just want to see exactly two and at this point I was so over the diary. I was so out of my death frankie. I don't know what the hell is guys. Hell with his only lie down on the couch, and I was gonna read this and I finished and larry turned, and he said I never thought I'd here that exactly outta here in my head This is good, and then I had to wait for two weeks to find out. I thought I'd die is also. The voice of the voice has always been my that this issue is not ten
of nicotine. Oh no always knows I, as I d like to sit in its true. They put me in a boy's choir. When I was I d seen with the boys section and church, I was in love sing. The girls cause us to a sudden. You made the film, but even after that, because then it goes into the aid it for so long. You unhappy were waitresses, oh yeah, oh absolutely. They did they pay me almost nothing for the film which I don't care. I may I will pay them, but I d keep an apartment in new york, my home and had rented place now lay while I was working, and that was the entire salary. But then it all happened, gas and, and then there came the raft, the flood of body, heat, ripoff, type, scrapes. Anyhow problem in italy, ITALY people so on a well, you learn, it unites us here. It's not just the animal is lack of what they want is sure things I want to say things and if this did well, then doing it again must also do well, which of course, is complete. Nonsense could do a sequel to romancing the stone
It later on with my absolutely galvanise jewel of an eye as high. It agreed to do as a signal to those two character of Joe wilder. But of course we got into great they suit me for twenty five million dollars, because I didn't want to do well. I refuse to do this script that they gave me for the sequel. I said yes, I had agreed to do a sequel, but I had not agreed to lower my standards and frankly, the seconds descriptive, Amy was nowhere near the quality of the first volume online. Quite fast. Well know it's just you have always been be. Would frankly that I always have the right that europe is known for what you do not do? As for what you do, and I am I am to intelligent frankly there to ever starve. So I the greatest power and right, I have is to say no.
Not to be compromised in my choice of work. Obviously, your vote, your own woman, coffee in turn, and that's what comes a renewal of this. I guess I do choose. While northern pig headed pig- oh yes, indeed by usually right may, I add, of course, is secondary. Ah well now. This is one billy jewel in say goodbye to highly, which, which is very much how I feel about it I really do and say goodbye to hollywood appearing in the west end was apparently the fulfilment of a dream he has spent
If your teenage years, I spent my high school years here in london at the american school in london Meyer come my father was a diplomat. He was a whether foreign service. He was council and posted here. Luckily, the london we ve been in venezuela for five years previous to their in caracas and did you do they will go to the fear to him and went to the west end. Although one first night we were here, we we went together as a family down to his fear. I saw name- I remember thinking. Oh the eu, Earn a living at this, we have no money, my family, you know, and there is no doubt that we will all have to support our cells and how long careers, but I didn't know
you know what my career would be. I mean this is what I wanted, but if I hadn't realizing it was a real profession that your father was set against. It was. He was not anxious for me to do this. First of all, I think you ve disapproved of it in general and it was licentious and Heaven knows what kind of lifestyle etc, and he was in some ways by Iraq and I was so insecure. You know that you was terrified and didier. She forbid it. Do you have a little dry? Oh yes, oh yes, we had marvels arguments which was terribly sad because we just with a huge glorious argument in
I started off the only time I ever ran away from home stormed off to strive for, of course, and I came home and he had died, really must have hit hard. I was seventeen actually. This is part of the reason behind this needs. Peace, museums, it is tat, is well my cousin, my father's death, we to leave england and leave the world. In fact, we we went to my mother's parents who live in Springfield Missouri, which is the centre the heart of a mac, and it was a first. There was the most cultural shock I'd ever had in my entire life I can cope with Language is, I can cope with other cultures I own I had now lived in for so long, and I've never been exposed to the mid west. So I had this record. The tchaikowsky first piano concerto be flat minor. Am I
Staying in dorm at the south was misery, state university and I would come back from my classes, locked the door and put on and think there was more to the world and more to my life than I had at present?
vladimir in afghanistan, playing part of czech piano concerto number one in beef, let minor with the london symphony orchestra conducted by already say they were a term southwest missouri states, diversity and all girls dorm, and you didn't fit New offers ma. Am other has a lovely boys also low. My sister doesn't speak much higher ever lived with the whole building full of shrill, hard accent. boy. She's girl, women's voices. It was driving me mad. And then they have is love a little customer. They had these. One of them talk boards or voice ryan who is left on the door, so somebody would come by and leave you a message or bible passage or an advertising slogan. A big favorite at that time was today is the first day of the rest of your life. and so one day I was so herself up
Then I rode on the door. I wrote it is better to rein in the herald and serve in Heaven and I went off to the theatre. You know I got back there, and there was a whole all the girls were gathered in the hall and elevated doors open I walked out with. We must discuss this. We have to ask you to erase that blasphemous message from our highways. Said I'm out, but you escaped you gotta do it. I got up and use gave to me an manhattan is where home is not always always been. My whole life, never try to live in LOS angeles, five, never wanted to our citizens, baloney anything they want you and I thought that I fly you out. I think the bed that's half the battle I don't wanna be that available via the pay to fly. May I really have to pay the fly themselves in the york and either way I get limp something out of it as a joke that you and your husband, ah manhattans, any surviving married couple years the lawyer, let nobody windows,
opening and we wait wasn't far from my house actually. So we just how old is walk over, not foster the car, and it is nonsense, so the press saw it coming down the block. You know and theirs, and I hear this guy yell to the others com. It's the last couple, look around them, Those were the last couple, reword obey seventeen use, and how did you may chair? We here's the next piece abuse. Oh all right! Well, my husband. Has had his real estate. Develop, prevent or seven are evidently home to all these buildings, and things like that
I'd come back from or managing the stone, and I realize I was living as I had as a student, and it was time that I actually spent some of the money and got a nice place to live in a home. So a friend who knew J do while my husband asked. If you will help me find a nice place, and he said I don't do that wrecked a part and is it was forgetting today said so anyway, so he gave her a list of buildings and I went and looked at the man like any so then I became a personal challenge, so he said he was gonna. Take me personally to go. Look at his next batch of apartment, who pick me up in his car, and this song. Avalon Roxy music was on the radio and I said, I have known. You said you know it and anyway, so we met at one o clock and he laughed at four thirty that morning
this roxy meeting can avalon. So life was good kathleen. He was the successful property developer. You the much sought after movie star You had a baby and that's rachel whose now twelve, but when she's just four years no, he was very well until one day you couldn't get issues on. Tell me what, I was doing through your mom, who shoot through a moment. I seem to be. swelling than I did know why and and suddenly my
issues that I think at that time were like a size. Seven have something lovely and petite like that. For my height I was very vague about were completely impossible. when I was I I was running around, I didn't know what to say: go back to new york and I went to the head of the dietary or something at one of the new york university hospitals and he took x rays and everything and said he had no explanation lashes simply by shoes in a month or so after that my left arm, wouldn't move, couldn't open or move my left arm. So I wanted nothing. I went to a sports doctor who does all the mets the pictures on the basketball players and everything else.
expert. He took it x rays and am our eyes and then suggested exploratory surgery because he couldn't find anything. I thought well and all things and then about a month or so after that I my neck froze, could not turn my head and I was feeling saw circus, so so much pain. I finally went to my gb answered. I really don't tell J, but I really think that I'm dying and and and you ve got to find out what it is an easy first, one who took blood and most people have a rheumatoid factor to some extent, maybe up to as much as sixty or something a mine was sixteen hundred. But you went through it Terrible appeared for studies to be painful is needs. Rheumatoid arthritis is chronic, chronic endless pain. It's not the kind of pain that you can get away from by sitting down by putting a feeder by lying down, because it's inside your joints so well one pasture
to another, maybe a little helpful, but it doesn't stop opinion. Just inflamed. There's! U copenhagen little daughter too well J. My husband was very supportive and for a long time we tried what we did. We hid it very much, but you have understand this whole area of auto immune diseases is only in the last five years. Has medicine really truly made great discoveries and strides in it as much as seven years ago, eight years ago and started for me They were using the same treatment. They ve been using the nineteen hundred other than the addition of steroids. Thank you very much. I could not move without them. Literally, could not walk without this your eyes, but the what the damage that they do to your body into your parents and to your mind, because they create great rage and great depression. At the same time they blew up
we ass men across all lose press photographs apparent if you that story as there was great speculation, I think I see I become a drunk or something like us and, of course, just trying to walk here. You know why didn't you tell him the truth, because you won't be higher if you're, sick, They'll hire you if you're drunk a high look at that. three of actors and then hollywood and everything that higher you over and over again, but if you're sick, I don't think so. We felt best not to not allow anyone to know this bosnia. If you next piece of music is weak, who said this is john and Van gallus, with the song.
in my way home, I think is from the album Mr Karas on this was for my wedding I'll, never forget it was saturday night and we its said when we start the ceremony like seven or something it was an august, and I were I was I'm crazy about time. I cannot believe to save my life. It drives me inside so at seven o clock it I'm pacing, like a mad woman, I send the best man down to drag the rabbi up and say: let's get this guy, get this guy unease please, please I'm marrying a shift to a nice jewish boy. Led the sun go down
John and Van gillis with find my way home. So how did you get through it caffeine? How come you're, no able to walk move act again: sale johnson, whose woody johnson's wife of johnson and johnson their daughter daisy, goes in the same classes. My daughter rachel and I was coming to the school to apparent meeting one night, and I had to get up three steps and I couldn't do it. I was sort of hanging on the railing with tears weighing down my face and sales at what in the world is wrong with you, and I said I rheumatoid arthritis. I cannot get up stairs and she said well, my mom, a middle child has juvenile rheumatoid arthritis and we have funded, is hardly such programme and you are going to morrow, and she got me into this doctor who was able to make an exception as compassionate need, or some such thing to allow me into his programme ends.
Me home some. Some drugs really could work and, unlike almost every other doctor, I've spoken to he said get into a pool every day. As long as you can stand at just keep, moving moving, keep moving as everybody else. It sent you to bed yeah, which of course is the worst thing, because your joys and said rate increases, and you have a sediment factory in your joys and then everything to flush it more and keep a muscle strong enough to take the stress off. A joint decision do penguin. The pain is almost gone. There is constant. Is always and there will always be some pain, but it's nothing absolutely nothing compared to what it was, but it truly tested that that stubbornness that determination- or they told me five years ago- that I would not act anymore, but I would be in a wheelchair or as in my life- and I said you
you're wrong you just you know. I have no other alternative. I will not do that. Number six williams ass cool ass. I am, this is a young, a young woman who was just doing some great music and she's, a mixture between folk and rock and she's sassy and she's. Smart. and I like the sound and aid, when
Williams and is cool, as I am sure I will not be afraid of women. Your possibly your most famous leading man will I dunno, but certainly one of the big leading michael, doubtless room from romancing still more. The resolution has been publicly found. A new leading lady in cat had resumed their journey. I cried, they differ I believe the stories that that you really mind that she might not even know that complete I can happily say, was a complete fabrication by the british press. I saw Michael last week. He came to the blame and we had dinner afterwards, and I told him frankly that if he did roma seeing this journey I mean the characters again. His children, Catherine, will have to play our daughter. However, nothing that was so funny anyway, I did
in the meantime, you have to lula to lula, bang heard on whom you base your one woman show she was completely outrageous. Yes, she was shocking. She was self destructive. She was foolish, he was vain. She was honest. She was Bulent. She there's this da. She was is and in the play. One of the things that we re sort of examiner take a part is the idea of celebrity worse. acting where's his. You know that she was such an outrageous woman. She was known more for being too lula, then for the roles that she actually created, like a bandying private lives and regina in little foxes were her. If she would, she create those rules with ie but she's, not
for that she's no for being too lula and drove her man not to have the recognised jim, it recognition. You know. So my love, you love to lula. Do you know this is an open, no, her dear there there did. Well. I I care about her. I feel about her, but I she's, very far away from me, I'm I'm closer to tallulah in a way, even though I would never behave in such a fashion, but mrs Robinson is very- is not compassionate. And she's, a clause nigh honest with herself and she's she's she's, recklessly hurtful without good thought, without consideration to others, and I cannot bear
so this is crazy, he's a grade character of the seven oh. This is simon and garfunkel, cathy song, when he sings look cross them to england, where my heart lies and for about a year. I suppose it was after my follows there. I actually, return ticket nail into doing that then I could I use because I could I leave my mother. I think- and I know where to go. He really I just had a ticket. I slept with my pill over by year until expired The sun was riding down, I don't know why has been riding songs. I can really work
strange simon and garfunkel with Cathy, some, which you say coffee does anybody. We call a cab. Not more than once that you ok you in order to record that catches, I'd like to arriving Yes, I'm gonna. My has been very much want me to do. An album can blues and sort of dyke lobbies, sort of songs, and so another career like as, if I've gotta time, what about coming to about time, all the time to work on a desert island in turn on a desert. And your wits, your determination law. Why would trust I wouldn't stay there too long, but I think I could I would make them. I would do it. I have to do frankly, but I should miss. I like myself, are like being alone for certain. Very nice get sick of it, so I will do my best to get off, but I mean you could ring a rabbits nicole,
Yes, yes, I, like the climate coconut through you, betcha nostril, this is. My husband is called. Is this from the suits, album and We should expect many laura eat. My husband has also is is a guitar. diana songwriter anne and has requested studios wells is real estate business and he has a bad cold suits that performs, and he wrote this for my daughter and myself, because He was writing about when I have to leave to go away to work, and so he gave us this song to help.
Suits with stay strong and your backing singer on their catherine. Yes, I'm singing the background. If you could only get one a daisy records which one would you take five year would have to be the asking, because as the most variety and because I would need the sort of spine stiffening that it would give me, you ve got the bible waiting for you and then please works shakespeare. One book can I take a complete, Jane austen now out dammit as afraid of her.
what I would do would definitely be a jane austen, because I find your endlessly interesting and humorous and her with always pleases me. I I suppose it would be emma aunt em your luxury, but perhaps I am misunderstanding about, but my dress d vena suggested may that if one told of a luxury shall one by get in one's dressing room as well as a desert island, so I think I'll say roses Kathleen ten. Thank you very much. Indeed. Let me see you does it on discs. Thank you
Transcript generated on 2022-06-05.