Alexander Palace Forum

Discussions about the Imperial Family and European Royalty => The Tudors => Topic started by: Helen_Azar on December 24, 2005, 07:59:50 PM

Title: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Helen_Azar on December 24, 2005, 07:59:50 PM
This thread was inspired by a historical novel I am reading, about the life of Katherine Swynford and her relationship with John of Gaunt ('Katherine' by Anya Seton). Before this book I knew very little about this subject, and now I am wondering how close this book is to historical facts (it is well written and seems well researched).

I plan on reading a non-fiction work about KS next, but in the meantime I am hoping that whoever knows a lot about her will post some known historical facts here...  Thanks in advance!

Helen
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: ilyala on December 25, 2005, 01:25:12 AM
i saw a couple of books on amazon about her and i was surprised that she was considered important enough to be written of... but i'm very curious about her myself...  :)
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Helen_Azar on December 25, 2005, 10:23:41 AM
In a lot of ways I find "peripheral" characters from history more fascinating than those who ended up as part of history by default. The former had achieved their fame on their own - regardless by what means, but nevertheless, while the latter could not have avoided fame even if they wanted to just by being who they were. Women like Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth Woodville and Katherine Swynford are conceivably a lot more interesting than many others that came from royalty, and I have a feeling that had someone like Mary Tudor, Catherine of Aragon or Elizabeth of York (and many of the royal men too) not been born of royal parents, we would never have heard their names in history, no matter how remarkable they seem now...  
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: ilyala on December 25, 2005, 12:43:55 PM
i am more fascinated, not by the ones who were born famous, but by the ones who were half famous... with an aura of mistery around them... people like edward 5th or 6th who died young and are known only for existing, like napoleon 2nd, catherine swynford being a part of that category. there will never be enough known of her because at the time people didn't consider her important enough to write about...
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on December 25, 2005, 01:17:18 PM
Hi guys. I've read the book and know Katherine's story well. The book is admirably researched and almost 100% accurate, only one or two minor liberties, such as Blanchette's fate. ;)
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on December 25, 2005, 01:24:43 PM
Quote
Women like Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth Woodville and Katherine Swynford are conceivably a lot more interesting than many others that came from royalty, and I have a feeling that had someone like Mary Tudor, Catherine of Aragon or Elizabeth of York (and many of the royal men too) not been born of royal parents, we would never have heard their names in history, no matter how remarkable they seem now...  


Just like we would not have heard of Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth Woodville and Katherine Swynford if they had never married into royalty!  ;D
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Helen_Azar on December 25, 2005, 06:00:17 PM
Quote

Just like we would not have heard of Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth Woodville and Katherine Swynford if they had never married into royalty!  ;D


Good point, but it was still due to their very own accomplishments (whatever those were) that got them them to marry royalty!  ;)
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on December 26, 2005, 02:39:15 AM
I have seen a picture of her somewher, I will go find it later when I have finished stuffing the turkey ;D
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: ilyala on December 26, 2005, 03:13:21 AM
Quote

Just like we would not have heard of Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth Woodville and Katherine Swynford if they had never married into royalty!  ;D


good point :). i'm sure there were many interesting people out there that aren't remembered by history. which does not mean they had no influence on it.
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on December 26, 2005, 08:24:25 AM
Quote

good point :). i'm sure there were many interesting people out there that aren't remembered by history. which does not mean they had no influence on it.


Very true, and I agree with Helen's last post too.  ;) Now I eagerly await Kim's pic.  ;D
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on December 26, 2005, 08:32:41 AM
If its a bit shakey its cos I have imbibed too much ;D
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on December 26, 2005, 10:20:59 AM
I have just discovered that there is reason to believe that Hugh and Katherine had a daughter called Margaret who became the Abbess of Barking.
Also, Hollywood were going to make a film about Katherine and John of Gaunt starring Ben Hur I mean Charlton Heston and Rita Hayworth but plans were scuppered because of their adulterous relationship. ::)
Also, Alison Weir is supposedly writing a non-fiction book about Katherine...due out 2007 :P
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on December 26, 2005, 10:24:31 AM
Oooh, thanks for the gossip update Kim.  ;D I don't think Katherine in non-fiction can compare to Katherine in fiction, however.  ;)
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: bell_the_cat on December 26, 2005, 10:54:33 AM
Quote
Oooh, thanks for the gossip update Kim.  ;D I don't think Katherine in non-fiction can compare to Katherine in fiction, however.  ;)


One interesting thing ...she was related by marriage to Geoffrey Chaucer! If I'm not mistaken he was her brother- in-law.
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on December 26, 2005, 10:59:32 AM
Yes, this is covered in the Seton book. He was married to her sister Philippa.
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on December 26, 2005, 12:16:23 PM
And the gossips of the day claimed that John of Gaunt was the father of Philippa's child :o :o
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on December 26, 2005, 12:27:09 PM
(http://members.cox.net/judy-perry/KTombDugdale.jpg)
Katherine and her daughter Joan
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on December 26, 2005, 12:30:30 PM
Sorry its a bit big but it is christmas ;D
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: ilyala on December 26, 2005, 03:17:28 PM
was that joan the queen of scotland?
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on December 26, 2005, 03:43:34 PM
No, that Joan was her grand daughter. This Joan was her daughter...who was the mother of, among others, Cecily, The rose of Raby, who in turn was the mother of Edward IV and Richard III
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: ilyala on December 26, 2005, 03:50:39 PM
aah yes, that whole marriage scene of the fifteenth century england... i got lost in it when i built the genealogical charts...  :-/
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on December 26, 2005, 03:54:24 PM
As Liam and I have said before...its because they use the same names. It gets so confusing.... throw in a few Kylies' and Britneys' and life would be so much easier ;D
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on December 26, 2005, 03:55:32 PM
Yes, that Joan, Katherine's daughter, married firstly Robert Ferrers, and had two daughters with him, and secondly Ralph Neville.

In fact, as a matter of interest, here's Katherine's children by John:
1. John Beaufort, 1371-1410. He married Margaret Holland, granddaughter of Joan, Princess of Wales. It was their daughter, another Joan, who was Queen of Scots.

2. Henry Beaufort, 1375-1447. Cardinal, I think.

3. Thomas Beaufort, 1377-1426.

4. Joan Beaufort 1379-1440.
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on December 26, 2005, 04:03:43 PM
Yes, and one of her grandsons' was Warwick the Kingmaker, father of Anne Neville, Richard III's Queen
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: ilyala on December 26, 2005, 04:06:29 PM
what became of thomas?
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on December 26, 2005, 04:17:49 PM
He married Margaret Neville and was Duke of Exeter. He died childless.
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Helen_Azar on December 26, 2005, 05:46:23 PM
Thanks guys! Now, this may be really obvious and it may have been in the book and I missed it, but how did they come up with the name Beaufort for Katherine's and J og G's children?
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on December 26, 2005, 05:51:55 PM
It was a French title of John's - Lord of Beaufort.  ;)
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Helen_Azar on December 26, 2005, 05:53:11 PM
Quote
It was a French title of John's - Lord of Beaufort.  ;)


Thanks. I kind of figured it was something like that, but I couldn't figure it out...
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on December 26, 2005, 05:58:05 PM
One minor irritant of mine with the book - the only irritant!  ;D Does anyone else think that the other royal ladies in the book are shown in a bad light to Katherine's advantage? All except Blanche of Lancaster - Katherine's idol - the other women are shown to be either malicious (Constanza), stupid (the Duchess of York), spiteful (the Countess of Buckingham) or slightly gone to seed (the Princess of Wales). That last one particularly irked me - Joan was the Fair Maid of Kent! But she's shown to be apparently not tat beautiful, so that no one outshines Katherine.  :P I'm probably making a mountain out of a molehill here, but . . .
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Helen_Azar on December 27, 2005, 07:45:18 PM
Quote
One minor irritant of mine with the book - the only irritant!  ;D Does anyone else think that the other royal ladies in the book are shown in a bad light to Katherine's advantage? All except Blanche of Lancaster - Katherine's idol - the other women are shown to be either malicious (Constanza), stupid (the Duchess of York), spiteful (the Countess of Buckingham) or slightly gone to seed (the Princess of Wales). That last one particularly irked me - Joan was the Fair Maid of Kent! But she's shown to be apparently not tat beautiful, so that no one outshines Katherine.  :P I'm probably making a mountain out of a molehill here, but . . .


Yes, I noticed that too, PL, but I don't know all that much about the characters of that era (yet) so wasn't sure if this was a skewed view or not. But it did seem a little weird. On the whole though, I like the book (I am about three quarters done now) and I think it is a good intro to the Platagenets of that time period. Again, thanks everyone for your comments!

P.S. Was Katherine S really as beautiful as the author made her out to be in the book, or was it just creative license?
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: elena_maria_vidal on December 27, 2005, 09:25:06 PM
Quote
Hi guys. I've read the book and know Katherine's story well. The book is admirably researched and almost 100% accurate, only one or two minor liberties, such as Blanchette's fate. ;)



What became of Blanchette?
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on December 28, 2005, 03:10:04 AM
Well, appparently she was as beautiful as the book says, she had neat, even features and a heart-shaped face which you can see on the picture I posted earlier. There is no extant portrait of her though. Even the monks who wrote so disparagingly about John of Gaunt said she was beautiful.
I too would like to know what really happened to Blanchette.
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on December 28, 2005, 08:36:10 AM
Quote


What became of Blanchette?


That's just the thing - I don't know. No one does.  ??? I won't mention what happens to her in the book, because I don't want to spoil it, but suffice to say it could have happened that way, but it would be quite the coincedence.
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on December 28, 2005, 08:37:51 AM
Quote

Yes, I noticed that too, PL, but I don't know all that much about the characters of that era (yet) so wasn't sure if this was a skewed view or not. But it did seem a little weird. On the whole though, I like the book (I am about three quarters done now) and I think it is a good intro to the Platagenets of that time period. Again, thanks everyone for your comments!

P.S. Was Katherine S really as beautiful as the author made her out to be in the book, or was it just creative license?


Oooh, keep reading Helen, we need more Plantagenet lovers on this board.  ;D
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Janet_W. on January 19, 2006, 06:10:08 PM
I am delighted to see this topic! I read Katherine many years ago, when I was in middle school, on the strength of having read Ms. Seton's novel My Theodosia about the daughter of Aaron Burr. I was completely entranced with Katherine and continued to read the novel once a year for some time afterwards; I also wrote to Ms. Seton, who very kindly responded to my enthusiam for her book and declaration of also wanting to be an historical novelist.

Anya Seton was a careful researcher (her father was naturalist and writer Ernest Thompson Seton) and she rarely substituted dramatic license in place of the facts. I understand that even today her books are much in demand and tend to fly off the shelves at used book stores.

Kimberly's mention of the plans to film Katherine fascinates me. For one thing, I happen to be a classic movie fan. Unfortunately only two of Ms. Seton's novels were actually filmed, which is a shame because I think they all have cinematic possibilities. Her strictly fictional Dragonwyk (though it did include as minor characters actual people such as Edgar Allan Poe) was filmed in the 1940s and starred Gene Tierney and Vincent Price. This version, Ms. Seton wrote to me, she was fine with. However, she did not like the film adaptation of another novel, Foxfire, which starred Jane Russell and Jeff Chandler.

As for the idea of filming Katherine with Rita Hayworth and Charlton Heston, I'm very sorry it did not happen.  Unfortunately Ms. Hayworth was, by the time the book would have been translated to the screen, not at her Cover Girl best, due to the cumulative effects of a tragic life that would culminate in Alzheimer's disease. But her physical type was, I think, right for the role, and she had a real-life innocence about her (according to all who knew her, including one of her husbands, Orson Welles, and the recently departed Shelley Winters) that makes her portrayals of sophisticated temptresses all the more remarkable. As for Charlton Heston . . . wow, nailed, as far as I'm concerned! The looks, the acting chops, the presence, the attitude . . . everything. And if you ever happen to see a 1960s film called The War Lord, you'll know what I'm talking about, even tho' by then he was a bit too old to play the younger John of Gaunt.
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on January 20, 2006, 09:37:45 AM
Perhaps we should make our own movie of 'Katherine' with Kim playing Katherine to Bell's John of Gaunt.  ;D ;D ;D
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: bell_the_cat on January 20, 2006, 10:02:23 AM
Quote
Perhaps we should make our own movie of 'Katherine' with Kim playing Katherine to Bell's John of Gaunt.  ;D ;D ;D


Yikes!

PL can be Richard then. He can get to wear his pointy toed shoes!
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on January 20, 2006, 10:04:42 AM
Hey, Bell. I ain't no spring chicken ;D
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on January 20, 2006, 10:06:14 AM
Quote



PL can be Richard then. He can get to wear his pointy toed shoes!


Young, arrogant, fashionable - sould like me alright.  ;D ;D
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on March 14, 2006, 02:23:33 PM
A new biography has just been published. I have ordered it from Amazon and it should get here the beginning of April. I have heard that it is very good,crammed full of detail but only 31 pages long. Maybe the author will clear up the mystery of Blanchette.
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on March 14, 2006, 02:25:01 PM
A bio only 31 pages long?  :o :o :o
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on March 14, 2006, 02:49:57 PM
I got it in a two book deal. It cost £3.50. The other book is a new bio of Anne Neville (I know, I know...that one will be 32 pages long :P)
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Tdora on March 17, 2006, 01:43:03 PM
Just seen the thread..
Was that Katherine Swynford?! Blimey. Never realised....I read the Anya Seton book years ago - and I was a huge fan of hers - and only now you've mentioned it is the penny dropping. I must read it again - which will necessitate me troiling up into my mum's loft this weekend to dig thru her library up there.
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Lieven on March 18, 2006, 06:56:04 AM
It's worth the 'dig' Tdora, as I think you'll agree.  ;D ;D
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on July 15, 2008, 12:46:33 PM
Well, folks I have just finished Alison Weir's bio on Katherine Swinford and I have to say I have found it extremely readable and fascinating to boot.
She has a lot to say about Anya Setons  Fiction novel... "Katherine" and IMO very gently shreds its "credibility".
I can only recommend this book as a window on the life of Katherine and mediaeval women in general. Excellent stuff.
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Mari on July 15, 2008, 02:23:42 PM
Give us a hint... :) what does She gently shred in Seton's book which I also read and loved years ago? Notes or specific sources? not enough?
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on July 17, 2008, 09:46:55 AM
Weir acknowledges that the novel exerts a tremendous influence over peoples' idea of who Katherine was. Anya Seton made "impressive and commendable" efforts to get her facts right but it is not a valid portrayal of the historical Katherine Swinford. Seton applied Freudian Psychology in determining reasons for her characters behaviour but the morality of the book is very much that of the 1950s and not of the 1300s. A marriage based on love is a concept foreign to the 14th century mind.
"Katherine" is essentially a romantic novel riddled with romantic cliches- unrequited love, cruel conflict and lonely exile yet it has even been listed in the bibliographies of works of historical non-fiction, resulting in it achieving more credibilty than it deserves.
(personally, I still love the book but recognise it for what it is- a delightful old favorite!)
For me, 2 of the most dramatic parts of Seton's novel are;
Blanche, Duchess of Lancaster's death from Bubonic Plague at Bolingbroke Castle.- In reality, Blanche died at Tutbury Castle one month after the birth of her 3rd daughter, Isabella. This would suggest that Blanche had contracted Puerperal Fever.

Katherine barely escaping with her life when The Savoy is burned to the ground during the Peasants' Revolt........Katherine was almost certainly NOT there!
 Katherine married Hugh Swinford certainly before 1365 and probably in 1362. This puts Katherine's age at around 12-15 years old at the time of her first marriage. the children of the marriage were; Margaret (professed as a nun at Barking Abbey), Blanche, Thomas and ? Dorothy.
There are indications that John of Gaunt had symptoms of a Venereal Disease and it was this illness that ended his life. Symptoms alluded to were intermittent attacks of illness in the late 1390s, putrifying genitals and blindness. This is not conclusive but Weir speculates that this was in fact, Gonorrhoea (Syphillis then unknown in Europe and was thought to have been introduced from the Americas in the late 15th Century)
 

Anyway,  Weir points out that nearly every monarch in Europe was/is descended from Katherine..including Queen Elizabeth II and Diana, the late POW.
She also lists Sir Winston Churchill.
                  Alfred, Lord Tennyson.
                  Bertrand Russell, and 5 American Presidents as descendents ;    George Washington, Thomas Jefferson,John Quincy Adams, FDR and George W Bush.
I cannot recommend Weir's book highly enough, it really is well worth the money. It has lots of notes, references and sources.
 
               
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Prince_Christopher on August 10, 2008, 01:35:12 PM
Many early American families descend from Katherine Swynford.

I know her father was Paen de Roet.  Has anyone come across the name of her mother?
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on August 10, 2008, 02:48:15 PM
Yes and I have forgotten it...... shame on me. I will look it up tomorrow (if I remember :-) )
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: alixaannencova on April 30, 2009, 05:19:07 AM
I assume Anya Seton never sold the rights to 'any' of her novels!!!! Is one right in this assumption?


I personally feel that 'Katherine' would make an absolutely bloody marvelous film!!! (As long as it was absolutely loyal to this wonderful book!!!!!!).....goodness I have seen it in my mind's eye enough times ...... it jolly well aches in my mind's eye like a 'real' memory!

Does anyone know why there have never been even the remotest rumours of screenplays and 'options' of 'Katherine', when surely it is the most 'beautiful' love story in all of English History?
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on April 30, 2009, 02:33:44 PM
Hey Toots, Charlton Heston and Rita Heyworth......lined up to make the movie but Hollywood decided that it was too "racey"
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: alixaannencova on May 01, 2009, 04:11:55 PM
I can't believe Chuck was going to play John of Gaunt!!!!!! Thank goodness the studio baulked on puritanical grounds!

As to Rita Hayworth playing Katherine......hmmmm. I may like Ms Hayworth but I think that casting her in the lead would have made the characterization of Katherine a bit tarty IMHO!

I do hope that one day a producer will be brave enough to commission a 'faithful' adaptation and will get a marvelous director and cast together to make Katherine! Goodness I could have fun playing 'make believe' casting director!!!!!

 
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Vecchiolarry on May 01, 2009, 06:22:47 PM
Hi Kimberly & Toots,

Don't know what to make of Charlton Heston as John of Gaunt as I don't know what JG looked like and when this movie would have been made.  Were CH and JG the same age when Katherine came along?

As to Rita Hayworth: -
Love her but she wouldn't have registered as an historical figure, I don't think...
They tried it with Lana Turner as Diane de Poitier and she bombed!!

Larry
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: alixaannencova on May 01, 2009, 06:50:37 PM
John of Gaunt would have been about twenty seven when he stood as godfather to Katherine's daughter Blanche Swynford. At this time the pair were not lovers, but it would be reasonable to put this part of the story at the beginning of an adaptation in order to demonstrate just how difficult Katherine's life was during her first marriage.

I would also love to know when the adaptation of Katherine was being planned as it would show how old Hayworth and Heston were at the time!

Interestingly Heston was, in real life, five years younger than Hayworth whilst John of Gaunt was ten years older than Katherine!!!!

Anya Seton described John as follows:-

'...narrow hips and wide muscular shoulders...He was tall...In John's face the Plantagenet stamp of long nose, narrow cheeks and deep eye sockets had been soften but not coarsened by the Flemish heritage. His eyes were as bright blue as his father's once had been, his thick hair was tawny yellow as a lion's pelt. His beard was clipped short and his face shaven to disclose a full and passionate mouth.'

 It sounds rather soppy and 'breathless' when quoted like this....! Especially the 'narrow hips', broad shoulders and 'passionate mouth' bits!!!!!





Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Vecchiolarry on May 01, 2009, 09:15:52 PM
Hi Toots,

Well, not to prolong this discussion on Heston & Hayworth but:
Heston was only hitting his stride around 1952 -1956;  and Hayworth was pretty much finished about then.  Also, they were at different studios;  so I can't see them making a movie together, as you said earlier.  And, I agree!!!.

Further & interestingly, Hayworth did play Salome in 1953 at 35 years of age - 20 years older than the purported Salome and a little long in the tooth.
She did however, do a marvellous Dance of the Seven Veils (quite good actually!!) and managed to take off 6 veils before the censors stepped in.

Somehow, I don't think this all would serve as a rehearsal for Katherine S.
I think she managed to keep her veils on!!!

Larry

Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: alixaannencova on May 01, 2009, 09:27:38 PM
I am so glad when it isn't just me be prejudice and too 'set in my ways'! It re-assures me when others see where I am coming from...thanks Larry!

Personally I would have loved to have seen Peter O'Toole and Julie Christie in the mid 1960s in the lead roles in a David Lean directed epic a la Zhivago!!!!! He O'Toole is nine years older than Christie and I can just 'see' them as John and Katherine! Rather than a scenery chomping Heston and vamp-ish Hayworth!!!




Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Vecchiolarry on May 01, 2009, 09:57:26 PM
Hi Again,

Yes, I always liked Peter O'Toole and he has always given good value in his performances.  I cannot understand why he never won any of those 7 or 8 Oscars he was nominated for.  When you consider the garbage actors and actresses who have an Oscar - - my question is "What happened??"...  Poor Peter...

And, Julie Christie would have been just right for a "fair English rose"....

Larry
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: alixaannencova on May 01, 2009, 10:08:22 PM
I often muse over O'Toole's repeated failure to win the 'lovely bugger'! I suspect that like fellow heavy drinkers, Burton and Harris..... it may have been something to do with his 'hoovering' habits which may have caused a sentiment of prejudice amongst the more puritanical voting members of the academy! All three were notorious for their penchant for liquid lunches so to speak! O'Toole has been nominated eight times for the award and threatened to decline his honorary one! Burton received seven nominations and failed to win and to my great surprise, Harris was only nominated twice! I always assumed he was nominated a few more times!   

Personally I really did think O'Toole would finally win it for 'Venus'.... but then Forest Whittaker did give that extraordinary performance as Idi Amin!

I am still musing over who could possibly play John and Katherine in an adaptation today! I guess it may be tricky as the film would really have to span a period of some thirty odd years to really do the book justice! For any actor that is a big ask! Hmmmm...I shall ponder on!



 
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: ilyala on May 02, 2009, 03:57:20 AM
Hi Kimberly & Toots,

Don't know what to make of Charlton Heston as John of Gaunt as I don't know what JG looked like and when this movie would have been made.  Were CH and JG the same age when Katherine came along?

As to Rita Hayworth: -
Love her but she wouldn't have registered as an historical figure, I don't think...
They tried it with Lana Turner as Diane de Poitier and she bombed!!

Larry

here's a portrait of john of gaunt:

(http://home2.btconnect.com/crusader-product/Michelham-Priory/john-of-gaunt.jpg)

as far as i can tell, he was dark haired - very much unlike charlton heston
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Vecchiolarry on May 02, 2009, 07:53:48 AM
Hi,

Thank you, Ilyala, for that portrait of John of Gaunt.  He looks a little like Vlad the Impaler to me - handsome but a little dangerous!!
And you're right, Charlton Heston he's not....

I'll go out on a limb here and suggest Hugh Jackman or Gerard Butler.
There is a British actor called Nathaniel Parker, who resembles JG;  but I think he's too old now for the role.

Larry
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: alixaannencova on May 02, 2009, 04:10:06 PM
Ilyala thank you for posting the portrait! I have always pondered the likeness although the narrow cheeks and sensuous mouth may have been where Ms Seton got her inspiration from! I believe at some stage a Keeper of the Duke of Beaufort's pictures did a bit of in depth research into this portrait and speculated that the portrait may be a Jacobean fake! Anyway I like it and like Larry think the sitter looks suitably 'dangerous'!

But...I still can not get away from my stereotypical image of a dirty blond haired John. The Plantagenets seemed to have plenty of red-gold burnished haired family members and others who were golden haired and all seemed to have blue eyes.... and then we have the ones like King John and Richard III who seem to have been darker haired! Funny how baddies tend to be recorded as being dark haired...I do wonder about that!!!!!

Anyway I see a 35 year old Daniel Craig as John! Such a shame he's a bit sabre-toothed now IMHO! Though he is just as yummy! Whoever would be cast as John would have to ooze masculine prowess and magnetism and be impossibly gorgeous enough and a tad brutish just to make the story of Katherine's putting up with him and going through all she did to win her man... believable!

Maybe O'Toole could play Edward III now and Judi Dench would look rather good as a well fed and dropsical Queen Philippa. Scarlett Johansonn would look right as the delicate and thoroughly good Blanche of Lancaster and Yohana Cobo could play a suitable spit-fiery Castilian Constanza! Penelope Cruz would be better but she really is too sabre-toothed now to play an eighteen year old at her first appearance! Katherine absoluteltly confounds me! I am still pondering this one as part of me says she was very fair whilst another likes the idea of a fair brunette like Rachel Weiz but ten years younger!
 
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Kimberly on May 02, 2009, 05:15:05 PM
Oh gawd NOOOO not Scarlett Johanson....perlease.
And please NOT Keira Poutly Knightly
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: alixaannencova on May 02, 2009, 05:22:49 PM
Oh my no never Keira, have mercy..... I am rather Keira-ed out to be honest...can you imagine Keira and Scarlett in the same scene....other actors would have to duck to avoid being pout smacked!!!!!!

I only suggested Scarlett as she is very fair and blonde and about the right age to play the virginal goody-two-shoes Blanche...but perhaps you have someone better suited in mind Kimberly? Pray share if you do...please!!! Anyway IMHO the actress cast to play Katherine would have to be sexy and earthy so that excludes Keira straight away! 'Shamppo bottle' Winslet could have pulled it off if she was a bit younger....gawd I do sound agist don't I?


Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: Vecchiolarry on May 02, 2009, 05:43:32 PM
Hi Toots,

Ha, ha, ha!!!
"Pout smacked" - now that's a new one for me & I like it.....

Many years ago, Jeannette MacDonald said in TV interview that she had to constantly smile during her singing and while listening to Nelson Eddy also in their scenes together that she had 'smile cramps'.........
I thought that was hilarious but now pout smacked will be my new favourite!!!

Thanks,
Larry
Title: Re: Katherine Swynford
Post by: alixaannencova on May 02, 2009, 06:35:30 PM
Smile Cramps....Lol...really LOL!!

Wonderful Larry...I have tears in my eyes!!!!!

Glad you like the pout smacking one too.......! It is such good 'soul food' to have a good giggle!!!!