Rita Tushingham

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Rita Tushingham
Rita Tushingham crop.jpg
Born (1942-03-14) 14 March 1942 (age 74)
Garston, Liverpool, Lancashire, England, UK
Occupation Actress

Rita Tushingham (born 14 March 1942) is an English actress best known for her starring roles in 1960s films including A Taste of Honey, The Leather Boys, The Knack …and How to Get It, Doctor Zhivago, and Smashing Time.

Early life[edit]

Tushingham was born in Liverpool, Lancashire where her father was a grocer who ran three shops[1] and she grew up in the Hunt's Cross area. She attended the Heatherlea school in Allerton, the La Sagesse convent school in Grassendale (became part of St Julie's Catholic High School) and then studied shorthand and typing at secretarial school. She wanted to be an actress from an early age and trained at the Shelagh Elliott-Clarke school before working backstage as an assistant stage manager at the Liverpool Playhouse.[2]

Career[edit]

Her screen debut was in A Taste of Honey (1961). Other performances included Girl with Green Eyes (1963), The Leather Boys (1964),The Knack …and How to Get It (1965), Doctor Zhivago (1965), The Trap (1966), Smashing Time (1967), The Bed Sitting Room (1969), and The 'Human' Factor starring George Kennedy and John Mills (1975). She also co-starred as Margaret Sheen in the TV film Green Eyes (1977), the touching story of a Vietnam veteran who returns to Southeast Asia after the war to find his son.

In the 1960s Tushingham performed several plays for the English Stage Company at the Royal Court Theatre: The Changeling (1961), The Kitchen (1961), A Midsummer Night's Dream (1962), Twelfth Night (production without décor, 1962) and The Knack (1962).

Tushingham has won a Golden Globe and a BAFTA Award, and was a member of the jury at the 22nd Berlin International Film Festival in 1972[3] and at the 40th Berlin International Film Festival in 1990.[4]

Later roles include the film Being Julia (2004), starring Annette Bening, and on television in "The Sittaford Mystery" (2006), an episode of Marple. She appeared in Season 2 of the BBC 3 zombie drama In The Flesh as Mrs Lamb, broadcast in May 2014.

Homages[edit]

Clips from her performance in The Leather Boys appeared in the Smiths' music video for the single "Girlfriend in a Coma," in 1987. She is also mentioned in the Franz Ferdinand song "L. Wells", the Cleaners From Venus song "Illya Kuryakin Looked at Me" and the Television Personalities song "Favourite Films". In 1999, she was featured on This Is Your Life.

Personal life[edit]

Tushingham married photographer Terry Bicknell in 1962. They had two daughters, Dodonna and Aisha Bicknell. In 1981, she married Iraqi cinematographer Ousama Rawi, spending eight years in Canada with him. She now divides her time between Germany and London, with her partner since the mid-1990s, writer Hans-Heinrich Ziemann.

In April 2005, at the age of 33, her daughter Aisha Bicknell was diagnosed with breast cancer. Aisha recovered and later gave birth to a son. Tushingham became an activist for breast cancer health and support.[5]

Tushingham and Bicknell are prominent supporters of Cancer Research UK's Relay for Life and have given a number of interviews to raise breast cancer awareness.[6]

In July 2009, Tushingham received an Honorary Fellowship from Liverpool John Moores University for "outstanding and sustained contributions to the Performing Arts".

Filmography[edit]

London (2006)

Film[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1961 Taste of Honey, AA Taste of Honey Josephine "Jo"
1964 Leather Boys, TheThe Leather Boys Dot
1964 Place to Go, AA Place to Go Catherine Donovan
1964 Girl with Green Eyes Kate Brady
1965 Knack ...and How to Get It, TheThe Knack ...and How to Get It Nancy Jones
1965 Doctor Zhivago Tanya Komarova / "The Girl"
1966 Trap, TheThe Trap Eve
1967 Smashing Time Brenda
1968 Diamonds for Breakfast Bridget Rafferty
1969 Guru, TheThe Guru Jenny
1969 Bed Sitting Room, TheThe Bed Sitting Room Penelope
1972 Straight on Till Morning Brenda Thompson
1974 Fischia il sesso Carol Houston
1974 Situation Rita
1975 Rachel's Man Leah
1975 "Human" Factor, TheThe "Human" Factor Janice
1977 Pane, burro e marmellata Vera De Virdis AKA, Bread, Butter and Marmalade
1977 Black Journal Maria
1978 Mysteries Martha Gude
1982 Spaghetti House Kathy Ceccacci
1986 Judgment in Stone, AA Judgment in Stone Eunice Parchman
1986 Flying Jean Stoller
1989 Legendary Life of Ernest Hemingway, TheThe Legendary Life of Ernest Hemingway Alice B. Toklas
1989 Hard Days, Hard Nights Rita
1990 Sunday Pursuit Alice Fletcher Short film
1992 Papierowe malzenstwo Lou
1992 A csalás gyönyöre Dóra - ügyvédnõ
1994 Gospel According to Harry Myrna
1995 Awfully Big Adventure, AnAn Awfully Big Adventure Aunt Lily
1996 Boy from Mercury, TheThe Boy from Mercury May Cronin
1997 Under the Skin Mum
1999 Swing Mags Luxford
2000 Out of Depth Margaret Nixon
2000 Home Ground Nellie Short film
2004 Being Julia Aunt Carrie
2007 Puffball Molly
2007 Hideout, TheThe Hideout Paula Hardyn
2008 Broken Lines Rae
2008 Telstar: The Joe Meek Story Essex Medium
2008 Sight Test Rita Short film
2009 Calling, TheThe Calling Sister Gertrude
2011 Seamonsters Rose
2012 Outside Bet Martha
2013 Wee Man, TheThe Wee Man Rita Thompson
2017 My Name Is Lenny Filming

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1964 Human Jungle, TheThe Human Jungle Joy South "The Man Who Fell Apart"
1973 Armchair Theatre Grace "Red Riding Hood"
1974 No Strings Leonora TV series
1977 Green Eyes Margaret Sheen TV film
1980 Ladykillers Charlotte Bryant "Don't Let Them Kill Me on Wednesday"
1982 Bekenntnisse des Hochstaplers Felix Krull Mrs. Twentyman TV miniseries
1984 Seeing Things Dr. Jessica Edwards "Seeing R.E.D."
1985 ABC Weekend Special Mrs. Prysselius "Pippi Longstocking"
1988 Bread Celia Higgins Recurring role
1998 Spending Nights with Joan Bette Davis TV film
2002 Helen West Margaret Mellors "Shadow Play"
2002 Stretford Wives, TheThe Stretford Wives Marilyn Massey TV film
2003 Life Beyond the Box: Margo Celia Fishwick TV film
2005 New Tricks Elise "Creative Problem Solving"
2006 Agatha Christie's Marple Miss Elizabeth Percehouse "The Sittaford Mystery"
2006 Angel Cake Millie TV film
2011 Bedlam Grace "Inmates"
2014 In the Flesh Mrs. Lamb "2.4", "2.5", "2.6"
2016 Neil Gaiman's Likely Stories[7] Effie Corvier "Feeders and Eaters"

Awards and honours[edit]

  • 1966 nominated Best Actress (BAFTA) The Knack .... and How to Get It
  • 1966 nominated Best Actress (Golden Globe) The Knack .... and How to Get It
  • 1965 nominated Best Actress (BAFTA) Girl With Green Eyes
  • 1963 Most promising newcomer (Golden Globe) A Taste of Honey
  • 1962 Most promising newcomer (BAFTA) A Taste of Honey
  • 1962 Best Actress (Cannes Film Festival) A Taste of Honey

References[edit]

Notes
  1. ^ "Rita Tushingham at screenonline". screenonline.org. Retrieved 23 August 2014. 
  2. ^ "Rita Tushingham 1942". ritatushingham.com. Retrieved 23 August 2014. 
  3. ^ "Berlinale 1972: Juries". berlinale.de. Retrieved 15 March 2010. 
  4. ^ "Berlinale: 1990 Juries". berlinale.de. Retrieved 14 March 2011. 
  5. ^ Lambert, Victoria (21 August 2006). "The knack of coping with cancer". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  6. ^ Cancer Research UK: Celebrities supporting Cancer Research UK
  7. ^ David Barnett (12 February 2016). "Neil Gaiman's Likely Stories brings tales of 'psychological cannibalism' to TV". The Guardian. Retrieved 27 November 2016. 

External links[edit]