At this time Roman Polanski was getting married to the beautiful Sharon Tate, and Victor Lownes offered to host his stag-night (bachelor party) at the Playboy Club and later at Victor's town house. The guests included Richard Harris, Terence Stamp, Michael Caine, Iain Quarrier, Steve McQueen, Warren Beatty, Harry Baird, Gene Gutowski and myself.
Our party started off in the normal fashion, drinks, a joint or two, small talk. We all knew each other pretty well. We were being waited on by the pick of the Playboy Bunnies and a dozen other gorgeous girls. The higher and drunker we got, the more outrageous the party became. I was sharing the sauna with Michael Caine and Gene Gutowski, and several of the girls, when the door opened and Richard Harris (drunkingly) staggered in. We all carried on with what we were doing. 'Come on you filthy bastards, come with me. I know where the real action is'-- whereupon he staggered out of the heat. Michael, Gene and I were not about to leave. As morning came and Roman had to prepare for his wedding, we discovered what had happened to Richard. He had burgled Sharon's hen party (bachelorette party), the only male present at that gathering of about twenty of the most beautiful girls in London. He was unable to remember a thing.
Richard Harris, the only man at Sharon's Bachelorette party.
And then some pages later:
Iain Quarrier and Jane Birkin in "Wonderwall"A few awful things had happened since I had left. In August 1969 Charles Manson had murdered Roman Polanski's beautiful wife, Sharon Tate. At the time, Michael Pearson and Iain Quarrier were in the California desert shooting the last scene of their film Vanishing Point. From the mobile production office Michael called Sharon to invite her to the end-of-shoot party. Sharon was eight months pregnant with Roman's child. She said she would try to make the party but if not, they should drop by for a drink. It took longer than expected to shoot that last scene, and it was nearly 11 o'clock when Michael and Iain finally drove into Mulholland Drive and past the compound where the Polanski house was. They decided not to disturb Sharon with a phone call as it was late, and drove directly to the Vanishing Point party. As the party wound down a couple of blocks away, dawn broke over the Polanski household and the Manson massacre. Michael heard the chilling news on the radio as he drove away from his party. Had he and Iain dropped in on Sharon, the two would have been victims of Hollywood's most evil murder.
Not surprisingly, Michael and Iain took the whole thing badly. Iain was very close to Sharon. He never fully recovered, nor worked again as an actor or producer. When I last saw him, rock climbing in the Lake district, he was handsome as ever, but the lights seem to have gone out.
Here is a new tour in California that I have mixed feelings about. I'll let the girl who's seen it tell you more here:
More on Polanski:
Roman directing "Vampire Killers" and yes, that is Sharon's back to the bottom right.
He gets defended here:
And this critic says that "The Ghost Writer" is the best picture of the year: