I just wanted to share a link to this very thoughtful, in-depth article which recently appeared in the highly-respected journal FILM INTERNATIONAL. Written by Illinois Professor Tony Williams, the article goes far beyond discussing just the documentary, explaining Susan Oliver’s place and significance in the Hollywood of her era. As the filmmaker who chronicled her life in THE GREEN GIRL, it was a very reassuring personal reminder as to why it was so important for me to undertake (and complete) thus monumental project. I hope you enjoy it!
Click here to read the article in FILM INTERNATIONAL —> http://filmint.nu/?p=18389
Susan Oliver in 1960 (Butterfield 8)
The world lost Susan Oliver 26 years ago today, when she passed away at the Motion Picture & Television Home in Woodland Hills, California after a valiant 7-month battle with cancer. She was only 58 and would have been 84 if she were still with us today. We’ll never know what amazing work she could have done in those lost years, but I guess it’s a small consolation that we still have such a huge body of work she left behind to watch.
Susan is still literally broadcast around the world on a near-daily basis as so many of her old TV shows and movies appear on more and more new retro TV channels, reminding those who’d grown up with her and forgotten as well as winning her an entirely new generation of fans.
I’m so grateful to have been able to play a tiny part in making sure that she continues to be remembered for her remarkably prolific career. THE GREEN GIRL documentary continues to reach new viewers, slowly but steadily. We don’t have a big advertising budget, but the word of mouth continues to travel, and every day, someone sees her and decides to do a Google search on Susan Oliver, “the amazing blonde actress from that old TV show last night.” And that’s how many of you wind up finding us, and ultimately the documentary.
Thank you for your continued support, and please tell your friends about both Susan and the documentary!
1957 Warner Brothers publicity shot for their newest starlet, Susan Oliver
February 13, 2016 marks what would have been Susan Oliver’s 84th birthday. Sadly, she didn’t make it past her 58th, a fact driven home to me over and over again as I interviewed so many of her contemporaries for The Green Girl documentary (more than one of whom has already seen their own 84th).
As the entire Star Trek world celebrates the 50th anniversary of the original series premiere in September of 1966, we also see it as the 50th anniversary of Susan’s iconic guest starring role in the special 2-part “Menagerie” episode (first airing in November of the same year). It includes most of the original 1964 pilot, which NBC rejected, but with the unprecedented caveat of asking the show’s creator, Gene Roddenberry, to try again from scratch. It is my personal belief that one reason the network rejected the original was simply because Susan Oliver, the one-time-only guest star, was actually better than the most of the proposed series regulars. (Not good if you want people to tune in every week!) It’s not hard to argue that Roddenberry’s second try, with a re-imagined Spock (Leonard Nimoy) and new cast members William Shatner, DeForest Kelley, James Doohan, George Takei, Nichelle Nichols, and (eventually) Walter Koenig was a a vast improvement!
Thank you, Susan, for Star Trek’s Vina (including her Green Orion Slave Girl incarnation) and for all of the many, many other wonderful characters you portrayed so memorably (and for so many years) on most of our favorite television shows!
Susan Oliver as a Child
Susan Oliver as Vina (Green Orion Slave Girl)