cinema archive screentests

Rare Gone with the Wind Screen Test


First, I wanted to extend a huge thanks to everyone who participated in the Vivien Leigh and Laurence Olivier Appreciation Blogathon over the weekend. I was so impressed with the consistent quality of the posts across the board. You all are a bunch of fabulous writers! We had posts about everything from people who knew Vivien Leigh to why people should stop calling Laurence Olivier a hammy screen actor, and everything in between. I was really glad to see posts about films which aren’t mentioned as often when discussing Vivien Leigh or Laurence Olivier, such as Sleuth, As You Like It and Sidewalks of London. Well done, everyone!

Second, now that I’m in California for a spell, I have a little bit of time to make some actual site updates. First up is some rare video footage of a wardrobe test from Gone with the Wind. It was submitted to by Chris, who says that the lady on the left is Margaret Talichett, the former wife of director William Wyler. Talichett tested for the part of Scarlett O’Hara, and then tested as one of the sisters (I’m guessing Carreen, what do you think?). The footage comes from the 1986 documentary Directed By William Wyler.



Kendra has been the weblady at since 2007. She lives in Yorkshire and is the author of Vivien Leigh: An Intimate Portrait, and co-author of Ava Gardner: A Life in Movies (Running Press). Follow her on Twitter @kendrajbean, Instagram at @vivandlarrygram, or at her official website.

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Comments (4)

  1. She seems more suited for Suellen tho 🙂 They all look like sisters imo because of the dark hair and fair complexion. Oh and that laugh in the end is too adorable for words.

  2. Kendra, have fun in California! I agree with Tharwa that all three of the girls look like they could be sisters. I didn’t hear the little laugh you mention, but seeing them was enough for me. 🙂

    Also, thanks again for doing your wonderful Vivien Leigh and Laurence Olivier Appreciation Blogathon! Vinnie and I (a.k.a. Team Bartilucci — who are celebrating our 22nd anniversary, by the way :-)) enjoyed it very much, and we were happy to do our bit to help bring SLEUTH to the attention of potential new fans of this awesome movie!

  3. Hi Kendra … Glad you had a safe trip home to California. I hope you have a nice visit. I’m sure your family & friends must be ecstatic to see you after so many months away, and proud of all you’ve accomplished. Your blogathan definitely belongs on that list of accomplishments — it was fantastic! I so enjoyed reading all the different posts. Everyone that contributed had such interesting, thoughtful things to say. Fascinating idea, and only you could have dreamed it up and carried it off!

    This new GWTW screentest clip that you posted is wonderful! Vivien is just beautiful beyond belief in it … so delicate and almost other-worldly. I think I disagree with you, though … Margaret Talichet looks to me to be testing for the role of Suellen, not Careen. Until she breaks into that little laugh at the end, she seems to be giving Vivien (as Scarlett) a very dirty look, and appears quite petulant … both very “Suellen” characteristics! The girl on Vivien’s left (the viewer’s right) seems to me much younger than both Vivien and Ms. Talichet, and much sweeter in her demeanor, which is more appropriate for Careen. I wonder who she is (??). I don’t recognize her from any other screentests or films of this period.

    While you’re back in California, do you think you’ll have an opportunity to post on your website the Japanese documentary featuring Vivien’s great-granddaughter, Sophie? I’ve been so interested to see it ever since your blog post about it several months back.

    Best regards as always, Kendra … I hope you have a wonderful visit home!


    1. The Japanese doc. is one thing I forgot to bring home with me 🙁 It’s really not anything super-special and has quite poor production values so you’re not missing very much, but one day I promise to get it up on the site.

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