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What lies beneath Samuel Beckett's half-buried woman in Happy Days?

It is one of Beckett's most famous – and most startling – images. But what inspired the half-buried woman in Happy Days? His friend and biographer James Knowlson tracks down the first Winnies

Samuel Beckett was a passionate lover of art and a friend of many painters and sculptors. He loved Dutch and Flemish painting in particular – and art almost certainly inspired some of his most memorable theatrical images. Even his earliest plays, such as Waiting for Godot or Endgame, recall the old masters: the character Lucky in Godot may well remind you of a Brueghel grotesque; Estragon and Vladimir's physical antics echo scenes in Adriaen Brouwer's paintings ("Dear, dear Brouwer", Beckett called him); Hamm in Endgame appears to share genes with some portraits by Rembrandt, staring out at the viewer – Jacob Trip in his armchair, perhaps.

As for Beckett's late miniature works – recently revived by the Royal Court with a tour
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Sybil Jason obituary

South African-born child movie star viewed as a rival to Shirley Temple

From 1935 to 1938, Shirley Temple was the world's biggest and smallest movie star. During this period, Warner Bros launched their answer to Temple in the cute, dark-haired, wide-eyed, button-nosed Sybil Jason, who has died aged 83. Jason made six feature films and four Technicolor two-reelers for the studio over these years. Unfortunately, most of her films and roles shamelessly resembled those of Temple's at 20th Century-Fox, and never equalled them in popularity. However, according to Time magazine in 1936: "Among child actresses, Sybil Jason is to Shirley Temple as Jean Harlow is to Ann Harding – less wholesome but more refreshing."

She was born Sybil Jacobson in Cape Town, South Africa, where her father ran a shoe business. As her mother was in fragile health, the girl was brought up mainly by her older sister Anita, who nurtured her precocious talent,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

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