Sylvia Syms

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In the sixties and seventies she still had a busy schedule but the roles that she was offered and secured did no justice to her abilities and I'm sure Syms found this very frustrating. There were a couple of notable exceptions to this rule however - the first being a thoughtful sort of boys own thriller called 'Operation Crossbow' (1965) with George Peppard, Sophia Loren and Anthony Quayle.

The second was 'The Taramind Seed' (1974) for which she won her third British Academy Award nomination. The film itself is classified as a spy thriller, however it doesn't really belong to that category - this is essentially a romance but a very fine one at that with Julie Andrews and Omar Sharif in fine form. One particularly well known role was as Tony Hancock's wife in his film The Punch and Judy Man (1960). She was able to appear in comedy films like The Big Job (1965) with Sid James.

In the eighties and nineties she has continued to work – by now carrying a wide variety of character roles, offering support in such films as Absolute Beginners (1986), Shirley Valentine (1989) and Shining Through (1992). Now, in her seventies, she is making plenty of appearances in both films and on TV. She is involved with the theatre and is good friends with two other significant British actresses, Jenny Agutter and Jenny Seagrove. Most recently she played the Queen Mother in the, highly successful and critically acclaimed, Stephen Frears film 'The Queen' (2006). She still works on various TV dramas and shows no signs of quitting. In 2007 she was awarded the OBE in the Queens birthday honours.

Sylvia was married for 35 years but then divorced in 1989. She has one daughter, Beatie Edney who is is a well-known actress in her own right – probably most famous as Chris Lamberts first wife in the cult film – Highlander (1985).

Undoubtedly in her era she was one of the most beautiful, sexy and intelligent actresses- easily comparable to Vivien Leigh, Ingrid Bergman or Natalie Wood. In the humble opinion of this reviewer - well - I think I'd take Sylvia most days and not look back - Mmm think she'd need to be wearing army combats and have a damp sweat on her brow....steady boy....steady...



Suggested films to see:

Woman in a dressing gown (1957)
Ice Cold in Alex (1958)
The Taramind Seed (1974)



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