Michael Caine was
sharing dinner with fellow actor, Terence Stamp, at a fashionable private
show-business hangout called “Pickwick” when he received word that the
film producer Harry Saltzman was also there and would appreciate the actor
stopping by his table. Saltzman
and his wife had just come from watching a screening of “Zulu” and
they both agreed that Michael Caine had “star quality”.
They were pleasantly surprised to see the actor so soon after
seeing the movie. It seemed
like an omen and they quickly decided what it meant they should do.
Michael Caine joined The Salzmans at their table.
He was complimented on his fine performance in “Zulu” and was
then asked if he’d ever heard of a new spy novel by Len Deighton called
“The Ipcress File”. As
chance would have it, Michael was able to truthfully say that he was
halfway through reading the book and was enjoying it greatly. Harry said that he was about to produce a film of the book.
“How would you like to play the lead?”
Salzman asked Caine.
“Yes, of course, that would be fine” quickly replied the shocked
“And how would you like a
seven-year contract with my company?” Salzman added.
Michael immediately accepted. It was a wish come true.
Soon after, he took his leave and returned to his dinner partner.
Terence Stamp asked, “What
Michael, happy and stunned, replied, “I got a starring role in a movie
… and I’ve just been given a seven-year contract.’
Terence stared at him long and hard before stating, “But you’ve only
been gone for two minutes!”
The Ipcress File
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