Shocktober Day #24 Celebrates The Films Of Linda Hayden!
Every day in Shoctober, I am sharing another Cult Movie Queen – today it’s the great career of Linda Hayden – the horror films she loved – and the one shocker she hated!
A Controversial Movie Debut!
Linda Hayden was born in Stanmore, Middlesex and made her film debut at the age of 15 in the controversial 1968 shocker “Baby Love”, playing a schoolgirl who seduces her adoptive family!
Because of her age, she needed her parents to sign off on her doing this role!
Here’s a short snippet of the film:
What a start! She jumped right into two classic horror films:
Hammer’s “Taste the Blood of Dracula” in 1970, followed by the shocker “The Blood on Satan’s Claw”, also known as “Satan’s Skin.”
Hayden’s Sexy “Confessions!”
Hayden also appeared opposite Robin Askwith, her then-boyfriend, in “Confessions of a Window Cleaner” in 1974 – one in a series of sex comedies that had Hayden showing off a lot of skin!
If you haven’t seen this films, they are goofy, and full of sex and nudity – read all about them here:
Among her many roles, Hayden worked with the legendary Vincent Price in “Madhouse”:
However, it’s the film with THREE DIFFERENT TITLES that is the film she regrets making!
The Notorious “Video Nasty” Shocker “Expose” AKA “Trauma” AKA “The House On Straw Hill!”
Yes, the ONLY film that Linda Hayden has publicly said she regrets making was this sex shocker!
It’s the 1976 thriller “Exposé”, which was known as “Trauma” in the USA:
And for its third title, the film was known as “The House on Straw Hill” in Australia – whatever you call it, the film was banned in the UK as a “video nasty”.
In a documentary on the DVD of “The Blood on Satan’s Claw”, Hayden says that “Exposé” is the only movie she regrets making and was not the film she had made originally.
Linda actually discusses the film again – on this fantastic blu-ray release by Severin Films…
This great blu-ray release included a 15-minute interview with Linda, in which she discusses several of her memorable movies…and then she says the only film she wishes she had never done was this one!
“House on Straw Hill” bears the dubious distinction of being the only UK produced film banned outright by Britain’s Video Recordings Act at the height of the moral panic surrounding what came to be known as “video nasties.”
“An Angel for Satan” is the career retrospective interview with Hayden, who laughingly admits to often being recognized by “people who’ve been up at 3 a.m. watching my movies.” She looks back over her experiences on the set of Hammer’s “Taste the Blood of Dracula” and “Madhouse” as well. Hayden describes Vincent Price, her co-star in that film, as “a real windup merchant.”
But when she gets to “Straw Hill”, she admits that it was “one I wish I hadn’t made” — but as an online review of the blu-ray noted:
“her allegations that certain unsavory “things were added” seem unfounded, given the absence of any dubious body doubling, let alone hardcore inserts. More than likely, she objected to a shift in the film’s publicity away from herself and onto Fiona Richmond, whom Hayden describes rather succinctly, if not exactly incorrectly, as “a lady who used her body a lot.” Co-star Kier, she allows, had “a filmable face.”
Note the way Richmond’s name is highlighted on the poster!
As you can see, Richmond was certainly NOT SHY in the film!
If you want to see more of Fiona’s eye-opening career, click here for a look at all of her illuminating performances!
I just bought a book of hers and will review it soon!
By the way, this incredible blu-ray included a documentary on the “Video Nasty” phenomenon – that and Hayden’s candid new interview made it a must buy for me! Click here to see more about the special features included:
Hayden went on to make more films, and lot of TV in the 80’s and while
the Actress is now semi-retired, she was featured as Mrs Brown in Martin Kemp’s 2010 remake of “Exposé”, with Jane March playing Linda—Hayden’s role in the 1976 original!
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Bravo to Linda Hayden for her terrific career!