Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Margot Kidder

The Canadian-born (what would US TV and film do without a ready supply of talent from across the border?) actress died last Sunday. It is sad to think that, if her bipolar disorder had been diagnosed earlier, she would have had a more rewarding career, apart from the rôle for which she has always been associated. She was the perfect Lois Lane, tough, independent-minded but feminine. The parts she had to accept after Superman in order to pay the rent were unworthy of her, including Superman IV: The Quest for Peace, of which she is quoted as saying:

A noble attempt at saying something about the nuclear proliferation on the planet through Superman. Unfortunately the script was just dreadful. I mean there's no two ways about it, that script was terrible. And there's that old saying in Hollywood - you can make a bad movie out of a good script, but you can't make a good movie out of a bad script. And I don't think it had a chance from the get-go.

At least she did manage to keep working in spite of a breakdown and a bad accident, and I cherish the memory of catching her in one of the many Mary Higgins Clark TV adaptations in which she played the secret other love of the heroine's late father. Typically, she was independent (an artist), feisty and with a wry sense of humour.

That was clearly what she was like away from the screen. According to her IMDB bio (which is worth reading in full), she made the great sacrifice of becoming a US citizen in order to vote against George W Bush because of his promotion of the Iraq invasion. It seems inevitable that she would support the presidential campaigns of Jesse Jackson and Bernie Sanders.

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