The Londoner: Olivia de Havilland ‘dodged Ted Heath proposal’

·3-min read
Getty Images
Getty Images

Life could have been very different for Olivia de Havilland, who died yesterday at the age of 104.

The film star once steered then British prime minister Ted Heath away from proposing to her, according to broadcaster Matthew Sweet.

Sweet told us he spoke to De Havilland in 2000 and she said “she had a conversation with Ted Heath where he was clearly going to propose to her and she had diverted the conversation to avert him”. As for why she turned down the PM, who ran the country from 1970 to 1974, Sweet said that though they were friends she didn’t fancy him.

He explained that while Heath “never popped the question, she was really sure he was going to. She said they were walking outside in a garden”. Possibly, Sweet mused, it was the Downing Street garden itself.

De Havilland starred in Gone with the Wind in 1939, and later won two Oscars for Best Actress.

Sweet, who recalled “a person of amazing courage, integrity and bloody mindedness,” drew the revelation from De Havilland over an afternoon “sitting on a chaise longue in her front room” where “a uniformed maid kept bringing macaroons”. A major missed opportunity.

---

(Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
(Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

Rosamund Pike has a heterodox view of history for our fake-news times. “I always wished that history was never taught through facts,” she says, “because facts have always left me really cold.” Pike, who plays scientist Marie Curie in a new biopic, adds to Indiewire: “Unless there’s a story and emotional truth, I don’t engage.” Careful what you wish for.

---

Is that a hedgehog I see before me? Rob Delaney (Getty Images)
Is that a hedgehog I see before me? Rob Delaney (Getty Images)

Actor Rob Delaney says he was excited a few months ago to hear rustling in his London garden, telling his wife “honey, I think it’s a hedgehog”. That was until “this rat, a little smaller than full-grown cat, came out of the bushes. Mangy, chunks of fur missing, just that horrible pink rope of a tail.” It was, Delaney explained to Edith Bowman's Soundtracking podcast, “a truly ugly rat”.

SW1A

MP Tom Tugendhat (Photo by: Tolga Akmen/AFP/Getty Images) (AFP/Getty Images)
MP Tom Tugendhat (Photo by: Tolga Akmen/AFP/Getty Images) (AFP/Getty Images)

Tom Tugendhat reveals what it’s like to be asked to appear on Russia Today. “These companies are propaganda arms of a hostile state,” the MP told Matt Forde’s podcast. “The first time I was asked to go on for an interview they offered me £500. When I said no they offered £750 and when I didn’t answer that text they offered £1,000.” The benefits of leaving someone on read.

---

Keir Starmer's break with the previous Labour leadership continues apace. We hear that well-qualified James Meadway, the former adviser to ex-shadow chancellor John McDonnell and former chief economist at the New Economics Foundation, applied for Labour’s Head of Economic Policy job. Unfortunately our source tells us Meadway didn’t even make the shortlist. Ouch.

Munroe sparkles as she goes Safety First

Munroe Bergdorf had a glint in her mask as the model quoted Naomi Campbell, telling her followers “Safety First”. Quite. Meanwhile rapper Dave celebrated Manchester United coming third in the Premier League, Noel Fielding wished Mick Jagger a happy birthday, adding “thanks for letting me use your hair all these years”. And singer Jessie Ware shared a snap of her incredible hair. Goals.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting