"One of the reasons I moved to New York was because I thought if I were there it would be easier to say no to dreadful scripts--I wouldn't be tempted to fly back and do them. There are some things even I won't do."
That's Kathryn Harrold talking, the actress many critics predicted would become a movie queen but who, through no fault of her own, usually wound up as a lady in waiting.
Critics liked her, but not the movies. You could hear the groans right down the street when "The Pursuit of D.B. Cooper" and "Yes, Giorgio" opened. And nobody seemed very impressed with "Heartbreakers" or "Into the Night."
Television too withheld its laurels. When she played Lauren Bacall in CBS' "Bogie" six years ago, " 'Bogie' Is Baloney" was one of the better reviews. And her ABC police show "MacGruder & Loud" lasted only one season. She wasn't sorry. "I got really tired of arresting people," she said this week.
"I haven't had a great deal of luck with my career, have I?" she said. "Maybe because I'm not pushy enough. But it was Ruth Gordon who said don't give up, so I won't."
She hopes her luck will change with her new movie, "Raw Deal," in which she stars with Arnold Schwarzenegger. It's a gangster movie, full of action, and Harrold gets to play a tough character.
Muscleman Schwarzenegger has quite a following these days and so the movie, directed by John Irvin, has a chance, she thinks. But before it opens Friday she'll be back in her Manhattan apartment with her Labrador dog, Mo.
She uses Mo as a test.
"If I'm out on a date with some man and I find myself wondering 'What's Mo doing now?' I know this is not someone I want to spend my life with."
Her private life, she says, is now just as important as her career. "That just happened recently, perhaps because in this town you see so many successful people who are still unhappy, still dissatisfied, that it makes you question your original goals.
"Really, I suppose, what I want now is to get married and have children. But at least I've got a dog. That's the first step."
HIGH HOPES: Almost everyone was impressed by Jeffrey Jones' performance as the lofty, music-loving Emperor Joseph II in Milos Forman's film version of "Amadeus." "He has a great future," said Forman at the time.
So what happened?
A year later he was out here looking for work, $15,000 in debt.
"Part of the trouble was that it took me such a long time to realize that 'Amadeus' was such a success," said Jones the other day. "So I didn't capitalize on it.
"I'm not good at self-promotion anyway. Instead, I went straight back to the theater and did a lot of plays. And you know what some of them pay? Maybe $100 a week. Finally I woke up to the fact that I was sinking and came out here to make some movies," including "Easy Money" and "Transylvania 6-500."
When he was starting out, Jones spent a year at the London Academy of Dramatic Arts and then, flying back into New York, was strip-searched and held by customs for eight hours. He was never told why.
This so enraged him that instead of continuing to Manhattan, Jones bought a ticket for Canada and flew there. He spent three years with the Stratford Theater, playing a wide variety of roles, before returning to continue his career in New York.
This year looks as if it will be a good one for him. He has two movies about to open--John Hughes' "Ferris Bueller's Day Off," due out June 11, and George Lucas' "Howard the Duck" in August.
"I like both of them," he said, "and believe me--next time I have a success, I'll know it."
Michelle Phillips, talking about her life as a member of the Mamas and the Papas:
"I was very rich, very thin and very popular. I'm still very rich, very thin and very popular."