Joan Collins dishes on new movie, COVID and being a legend

Joan Collins is back onscreen as a would-be seductress with Tuesday’s “The Loss Adjuster” and not even COVID-19 could stop her.
She calls it “a small, charming British film.” In it, Collins plays a blond widow who confers with a hapless insurance adjuster (Lukas Goss) about a missing jewelry claim. Just as a shark makes a straight line for a snack, so does this widow make her appetite obvious.
“She’s a woman who has done something slightly naughty — when they talk about ‘losing’ those jewels,” Collins, 87, began.
“Basically, her husband has died and she was devoted to her husband her whole life — as many women of this generation do.
“And she’s ‘lost.’ She doesn’t know what to do. And here’s this slightly attractive man (Goss). Originally there was going to be a lot more of it but unfortunately COVID came along. So that was truncated.”
NOV. 27, 2020 – Luke Goss ( as Martin Dyer) and Dame Joan Collins (as Mrs. Margaret Rogerton-Sykes ) in a scene from “The Loss Adjuster.” Courtesy of Trinity Creative Partnership
As for COVID-19 these past nine months, “Complicated — that’s a very good word. It’s made my life difficult. I’m a very social person and I had all sorts of things planned. Several work projects. There were about four of my friends having big celebrations for birthdays ending in an 0, changing from 4-0 to 8-0. I was getting awards. A lot of things that didn’t happen.
“I’m a person who’s very averse to staying in all the time. I like to go out, I like to do things with Percy (Gibson, husband No. 5). We go to the cinema or the theater at least three times a week. We go out to restaurants at least two or three times a week. That has all stopped.”
With a career that began when she was 16 and is highlighted by her portrayal of Alexis Carrington in the ’80s hit “Dynasty,” what does it take for Dame Joan to go back to work?
“I’m not offered a lot of things at all. I’m not Meryl Streep or Judi Dench, I’m a jobbing actress. I do love things in England, where I do a lot of television.
“I’ve just done a series in Madrid called ‘Glow & Darkness,’ which is an historical 11th century fantasy. I have several things in the pipeline and if they happen, they happen. I’m not desperately ambitious to do anything more.”
Collins has written five tell-all memoirs and was always, decades before Madonna urged her fans to dump the double standard, candid about ‘owning’ her sexuality.
“I think I was a feminist before it became a hot topic. I didn’t consider that I just ‘jumped into bed.’ I had a few sequential relationships.
“I got married very young, when I was 18. It lasted a year and took four years to get the divorce. So I had boyfriends. Like any young girl, I went to bed with them. Which apparently young girls do today.
“But back in the ’50s and ’60s, people were a little more circumspect. So it caused a little shock.
“Hedda Hopper, who as you know was one of the most influential gossip columnists, said 20th Century-Fox should cancel my contract. Because I was with this unknown actor called Warren Beatty.”
Beatty went on rather spectacularly. As did Collins, who laughs when called a Living Legend.
“I don’t take it too seriously.
“I’ve never taken too seriously any of the epithets the press has given me. When I was 17, starting in movies, I was called ‘Britain’s Bad Girl.’
“I’ve been called all these strange things but it hasn’t had much effect on how I view myself.”

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