Renowned Actress, Author, Scriptwriter
Sarah Miles is an English actress whose career flourished during the Swinging Sixties and the early Seventies. Her best-known films include The Servant, Blowup, Ryan’s Daughter and Hope and Glory. During her acting career Sarah was nominated for several BAFTA and Golden Globe Awards. She has survived a breath-taking mosaic of battles which she ultimately won throughout her unique career and life; she is a lady shining with positivity.
Miles has stayed away from acting in recent years, having preferred instead to pursue her second career as a writer. This is not from lack of offers, there have been a number of scripts that have fallen on her doormat, but none of them sparked a passion that would entice her back to the theatre.
“My career is not as important to me as my integrity,” she smiles. “I made that choice and I’m very happy. I’m a very happy person. That’s because I have never fallen short of what I think or what I believe to be justice.”
In 2013 Sarah opened her house as ‘Chithurst Manor Healing Centre’ which operates as a non-profit business providing alternative healing and therapy. The Centre also provides meditation and retreat sessions, and other holistic therapies.
Sarah now wants to share her unique experiences during her career and life. Having met most of the acting ‘greats’ and lived a full life, she is full of fascinating and often humorous anecdotes.
The Life and Times of Sarah Miles
The Film Industry
Anecdotes from the World of the Famous
Interview with Sarah Miles
You have had a successful career as an actress, across stage, TV and in film. Do you believe you fulfilled your potential as an actress and would you do anything differently if you had the time again?
I would have played my cards differently when being endlessly sexually assaulted, abused, whatever. I should have been more gentle, and handled it far more cannily, rather than snarling at them to get lost’. Because all I gained by flinging them off me was to lose the role. I also made a vow that I would never do violent films, special effect films and never ever do a commercial, by that I mean to link myself with some consumer product, turning down over 3 million dollars over my career. Now that’s peanuts by today’s standards, but it certainly wasn’t to mine!
You have faced and overcome many challenges throughout your life and career, what motivates and inspires you to keep creatively strong?
Since 1973 I’ve been practicing total surrender, the hardest lesson of all. Total surrender to a higher intelligence requires utter doubtlessness, and this wondrously doubtless state of being is almost impossible to achieve. I’m able to achieve it most of the time nowadays, yet I still let doubt creep in occasionally so I still have a way to go. But in passing everything over to a higher intelligence, automatically the stress, angst, fear simply drops away because one’s higher intelligence is taking care of everything, leaving you full of light, doubtlessness and trust.
You lived a reclusive life at your healing centre for a number of years. Was this a pivotal time to evaluate which direction you wanted your life to go in or was it more a case of replenishing mind and body?
No, all I have been doing is trying to understand the relentless blockades placed before me, and finding sufficient trust to hand fate and destiny over to this higher source. In other words I am waiting to get my direction from a higher source, yet staying in a state of contentment, pretty much all the time. You see, I feel very strongly about our future. As robots begin to take over (which they most certainly will) we will be unable to compete. So if we are to remain superior beings we will have to start digging deep, and contact our spirit, (which lately has been muddled up with religion and therefore laid dormant). Robots don’t ‘DO’ spirit, and never will. And we are mostly spirit, so let’s get cracking!
To book Sarah Miles
Sarah is a master of beautiful words and her witty brand of story-telling takes you from farce to soul as fast as she and indeed her audience can go. Her presentations are full of inspirational messages.
WHO ARE WE, US ENGLISH?
I’m neither Left wing nor Right wing, nor leader nor follower, I’m merely asking us to remember who we are.
Why is it that after every ‘fall of empire’, decadence is sure to follow? Decadence emerges when you lose sight of who you are, a loss of identity mirroring the loss of empire.
Yet the Scots possess a fine sense of their ‘Scottishness’. The same with the Irish, they know precisely who they are and revel in it. The Welsh too, have a very potent sense of their unique identity, they are innately Welsh … so why not us … who are we?
I was born in 1941 when my father was fifty-six. His study drawer was stuffed full of medals, including the Military Cross. In the First World War he joined the Royal Artillery and rode to war on horseback. Yet the only war story he shared was when his beloved horse Kitty was shot from under him during a charge. An officer galloped by: “Climb aboard, sir, climb aboard!” Daddy chose to stay, to lie there in the mud, cradling Kitty’s head in his arms, with bullets swooshing past his ears, until she died. His next horse was shot from under him too.
Apparently he was a pretty hot spy in the 2nd World War and we never knew until fairly recently. In both wars he was fighting for England’s freedom and democracy.
After the 1st War, he became a member of the Bloomsbury Set, that group of intellectuals in the 20’s/30’s and early 40’s. The conventional wisdom of the day among members (if not downright obligatory!) was to hold Communist and Atheist views. My father held both.
We four children had a strict upbringing. As soon as the gong struck we immediately had to assemble for the meal. My two brothers sat opposite me with my sister on my right. Father, with his Communist views, (gradually moving over to the left!) and mother, a staunch Conservative, would banter rather than argue, back and forth from either end of the table. For us children it was like watching Wimbledon, all of us keeping our eye on the ball. So obviously we all grew up with some understanding of politics from both the left and right standpoint.
I found Communism most seductive in theory: sharing, equality and all that, but in practice there inevitably has to be the Big Boys running the show, the root of most corruption. ‘Left’ and ‘Right’ wing didn’t make much sense to me either, for how pray, can you haul up a sinking ship by heave-hoeing from left and right? The boat will only rise up when everyone is pulling in the same direction.
Why are we so apologetic for being English? Why have we allowed our innately friendly natures to be trampled underfoot in this way? I have a good memory so I can vividly recall the forties and fifties. The two wars were over and we were pumped full of the euphoria of freedom! This new freedom of ours gave us a whiff of our true potential, which finally burst forth in a great release of creative energy that became the 60’s revolution.
I lived in LA during the seventies. When I arrived there, to be English was most certainly a feather in one’s cap. America looked up to us, the 60’s revolutionaries, for they were responsible for the creative shift of consciousness in the arts, the fashion world, film, music, science, etc, etc, etc. We Brits were the ‘Beez Kneez’ all right!
Yet when I returned home to England in 1979, I discovered there had been a shift of a different kind. Everything had reversed. No longer did America look up to Britain; on the contrary, Britain was now kowtowing to this new ‘fashionable America’, clinging to its coat tails in a most unsuitable manner. I maintain that was the moment our present defeatist, cowering attitude began to take hold.
Just imagine if we were to return to the EU, we’d be a laughing stock,creeping back to Brussels with our tail between our legs, cowering, having probably killed off democracy for good. Cowering doesn’t cover it. If my father were alive today he would shake his head in despair, finding our present cowardice not only shameful, but downright incomprehensible, and certainly not what he fought and risked his life for.
Besides, in returning to the EU, we move ever closer to Europe’s Federal dream, a dream that can only end in disaster, being manufactured, as it is, from above by the elite. ’Oneness’, as in this case, twenty eight countries joining together, can only come to pass if the desire for such unification is given birth at the grass roots. Only the grass roots can bring about the miracle of Oneness.
We English are blessed with a mighty energy beneath our feet, for our land, with its bewildering number of ancient monuments, is sacred. So whatever race, creed or colour, we are all capable of tapping in to that great energy, but in so doing, it is imperative we respect and protect that essential balance of nature. That way we can begin the upward path; awaken our boundless spirit once again and start honouring what’s left of Shakespeare’s poor old ‘Precious stone set in the silver sea’.
Once unleashed from the EU, we could begin the serious business of renouncing, for renouncing, settling for less for a while, will be part of our EU divorce. There was strict rationing during my childhood, yet we were all exceedingly content and healthy, for we all knew: no pain no gain. Surely we don’t want to tell our great-great-grandchildren that “once upon a time there was a little country called England, whose language the whole world speaks”.
This will undoubtedly happen if we continue to stop believing in ourselves and in England.
How can we let down my father’s generation and cower in the face of temporary adversity? We must surely look at the bigger picture, that means looking deep within ourselves till we recognise our denial, and accept the fact that here in England (almost everywhere actually) the lives of those not of the ‘elite,’ are at present hardly fit for purpose. It should be a beautiful experience this wondrous ‘life’ of ours, but we’ve taken the wrong path. Deep down we know we have to change direction… and we CAN!
Remember; the robots are most certainly coming and robots don’t ‘do’ spirit. So for self-preservation, now is the time to take our dormant spirit down from dusty old shelves, and in so doing, regain our lost identity, plaster back that stiff upper lip and once again become who we truly are – ENGLISH.
When that new ‘friendly Englishness’ has returned (that Englishness I knew in the forties and fifties) we will be ready to start the serious business of sharing: you cannot have peace without justice and you cannot have justice without SHARING.
Globalisation works well for the rich, large businesses, those who live and fly everywhere, but a soulless, grey void for those unable to. No, globalisation lacks humanity.
So let’s contact that creative spirit of ours that invented almost everything, that mighty fearlessness that we have in spades, and become the vanguards for a whole new way where ‘small is beautiful’ – a veritable tapestry of nature in harmony with contented neighbourhoods.
England can only accomplish its rightful destiny once it is unfettered from the EU. That way, with a clean slate (transparency) and open heartedness, we can tread softly into new beginnings, into the new Golden Age.
Copyright Quiet Productions LTD , February 2019