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Caroline Munro: Starting Over

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On the edge of her greatest success, fantasy films' favorite femme reviews her past and previews her future.

By Steve Swires

An authentic cult heroine due to her appearances in such genre fare as The Golden Voyage of Sinbad, At the Earth's Core and The Spy Who Loved Me, Caroline Munro is acclaimed as the undisputed "First Lady of Fantasy Films" by her worldwide fan following (see previous interviews in FANGORIA #4, 6 & 46, and STARLOG #57). Now, after two decades in show business, she finally seems poised on the verge of her widest success—her progress accelerated by six diverse new projects: three films, two television series and a play.

"At the beginning of 1987, I decided I wanted to do as much work as I could," Munro says. "I want to be kept on my toes. I feel I must expand in all sorts of ways. These projects have been very good for me, because I've learned something from each experience. I've learned that I'm more capable, perhaps, than I thought I was. I don't mean to say that I'm brilliant. But I'm open to suggestions."

Relaxing in Malibu, California, during a respite from her whirlwind of activities, the beautiful British actress is recharging her energy before embarking on her most exciting professional opportunity yet—starring as the female lead in the long-awaited tentatively titled Doctor Who: The Movie, based on the BBC science-fiction TV series. The film will be produced and directed by Peter Litten (FANGORIA #53) and George Dugdale—the original creators of Max Headroom, through their London-based special effects company Coast to Coast Productions—from a screenplay by Mark Ezra. The $14 million movie casts Munro as Cora, a Gallifreyan TARDIS engineer, who reluctantly accompanies the Doctor on his adventures through space and time.

"It's the best thing that has ever happened to me," Munro declares. "It's the pinnacle for me as an actress. I know how much Doctor Who is loved throughout the world. To be associated with it, even in a small way, is wonderful. I grew up watching the TV show. To be in the film version is like a dream come true. I hope I do it proud."

Accustomed to portraying superficial, helpless "women in jeopardy" roles, Munro relishes the chance to play Cora as a forceful, self-reliant character. "Cora won't be running about in tiny bikinis," she notes, referring to her stereotypical image as the scantily clad space pirate Stella Star in Starcrash. "She will be a strong, opinionated lady, who won't stand for any nonsense. But she'll also have a vulnerable side, so the audience can feel sympathy for her."

While patiently developing Doctor Who: The Movie, Litten and Dugdale have also created another property with which to showcase Munro, Roxscene. Initially perceived as a female version of Max Headroom, the character provides a much larger scope for creative experimentation. According to their story concept, Roxscene is an android manufactured by profiteering tycoons to operate a pirate TV station in outer space. Liberated from their control via a technical mishap, she unleashes her outrageous personality on an unsuspecting world.

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  • APA 6th ed.: Swires, Steve (number 130 (May 1988)). Caroline Munro: Starting Over. Starlog p. 56.
  • MLA 7th ed.: Swires, Steve. "Caroline Munro: Starting Over." Starlog [add city] number 130 (May 1988), 56. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: Swires, Steve. "Caroline Munro: Starting Over." Starlog, edition, sec., number 130 (May 1988)
  • Turabian: Swires, Steve. "Caroline Munro: Starting Over." Starlog, number 130 (May 1988), section, 56 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=Caroline Munro: Starting Over | url= | work=Starlog | pages=56 | date=number 130 (May 1988) | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=7 July 2020 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=Caroline Munro: Starting Over | url= | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=7 July 2020}}</ref>