Source: Movie Mirror Nov 1965
Subtitle: The most surprised girl in the world was David's wife, Jill. She doesn't know why he needs to attend a "school for lovers," but his future career can hinge on how well he learns his lessons of amour.
Writer: Warner Rice
Main article text:
The producer reached across the huge mahogany desk for one of several telephones. "Hi... yeah... How are you?" His voice sounded pleased. "Sure, sure I know what you want... well, whoever you want, I'll try to get him for you. *Who?... McCallum?!*" He was aghast. "Well, I don't know. I mean, what kind of experience... Yeah, O.K. I'll let you know."
The *someone* on the other end of the phone had just said that he wanted David McCallum for the romantic lead in his new picture. (Sorry,
but we can't reveal the particulars just yet; when we called the above-mentioned
producer for a confirmation on this story, he made us take a vow of silence.)
Why all this fuss over David playing a romantic lead?
One answer might be that he's never done such a role. Certainly Illya Kuryakin (David's character in *The Man from U.N.C.L.E.*) could not be considered a romantic type. Charming, dashing, with a great deal of derring-do... yes; but a lover? No.
But surprisingly enough, millions of young women across America have responded to his special brand of appeal. The producers of *U.N.C.L.E.* never dreamed that David McCallum would be the one to make such a stir. And no one suspected, least of all David, that he would come to be referred to as a "sex symbol." And yet it happened.
Therefore, isn't it conceivable that David *could* become Hollywood's leading romantic male?
Perhaps another fear is that he just doesn't have enough experience as an actor. But people are forgetting that David, who was born in Glasgow, Scotland, and who studied to become a musician as a child, entered the world of showbusiness at the tender age of 14. As a child actor, he worked on BBC radio shows, displaying a great proficiency with dialects. (There is a story that David, as a youngster, used to tie up the telephone lines for hours doing marvelous impersonations. These ranged anywhere from a local laborer to the Queen of England, and all for the benefit of the telephone operators!)
He also attended that most venerable of acting schools, The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, for two years. He got his first break soon afterward, and began doing extensive work with various English repertory companies; by 1957 he was a rising young player in British movies. How could there be any question as to his ability?
David admits he loves the fuss and fun of being a star. "They say actors want stardom only for the money," he says. "That's a lie. They love such adulation as this. None of them can say they don't."
But he also knows that he has even further to go to become a really great star. However, he must convince a lot of "V.I.P's" that he *does* have the potential to play a romantic role... the sort of character that the late Clark Gable made famous.
"Here I am, almost at the height of my success. But I'll never reach the top unless I can enlarge my scope, and escape the rut of always playing the same character," David mused. He searched for the answer for months. Now he's done the only thing he thought possible - he's taking private "love-making, Hollywood style" lessons!
As far-fetched as it may seem, there is a definite technique involved in making love on the wide screen. Even the greatest actors the world has ever known have failed when it came time to drop the small-talk and prepare for that final, breath-taking clinch. A little rigidity may pass unnoticed on the stage, but never during an intense close-up. And none of us can, when pressed, name more than a few really great screen lovers.
You may well wonder how David's wife, the lovely Jill Ireland, reacts to his "private lessons."
Although he welcomes any personal publicity, David guards jealously over Jill and their three small sons, trying to keep his family out of the spotlight whenever possible. He wants his children to have some semblance of a normal childhood, and he knows only too well that growing up in the public eye can warp a child's view of life. At this age, when they are most impressionable, children must be protected, and David intends to do just that.
This past winter he was sent out for his first promotion tour on behalf of *U.N.C.L.E.* The extent of his popularity was quickly established. In Dallas, a bevy of 50 girls descended on David, Jill and an accompanying publicist. One of the girls flattened him against a wall, turned to Mrs. McCallum and asked "Do you mind?" She then kissed him squarely on the lips.
Since then the situation has become even worse. David, in the beginning, was obviously upset. "It's disquieting - that's what it is." And... so
was Jill. She had never had to share her husband before, and it took some time and a great deal of self-control for her to accept this new
development in David's career. But she has learned to live with it; now, although she may
not find it particularly amusing, she is able to turn her head the other way
So, when David began his lessons in Hollywood screen technique, Jill was able to accept this, too, without many twinges of regret. She knows how important this is to his career. Ultimately, she knows that whatever David wants, she will also want... because she loves and trusts him.
As of this writing, there seem to be no serious obstacles in David's career. He has a rich, firm background in acting experience. *The Man
from U.N.C.L.E.* has catapulted him to fame, straight into the hearts of American
His only remaining desire is to become a great Hollywood star, and, according to the story reported above, this chance seems imminent.
A producer appears to be interested; David has heightened his interest through his screen technique lessons.
We hope that by the time you read this you will already have heard about David McCallum's new image, his *romantic* lead in an as yet unnamed movie, to be released soon.
As for Jill's last word on David's love-lessons: "I'd like to volunteer as his teacher but I understand I'm not the type he's going to make love to."
Footnote: David stars in *Around The World Under The Sea*