Cinema: She Knew What She Wanted

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The producer had said—and the newspaper quoted him: "Romeo and Juliet is not a play for aging prima donnas. Juliet should be played by a girl of 14." Producer Peter Brook was only half-serious about wanting a child-Juliet; he was mostly trying to attract attention to his forthcoming season at Stratford-on-Avon's Memorial Theater. But next morning his phone rang and a breathless voice said: "My name is Claire Bloom. It said in the papers that you wanted a girl of 14 to play Juliet. I am 14!"

Producer Brook asked her to come and...

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