PATRICIA ROC d2003. British film actress employed by the J Arthur Rank studios as "The Archetypal English beauty" in the Gainsborough melodramas of the 1940s including ; Madonna of The Seven Moons (1945) and The Wicked Lady (1945). She only made one film in Hollywood Canyon Passage (1946). Throughout her life she had a much more complicated personal life ; Two weeks after the outbreak of war in 1939, she married Canadian-born Mayfair osteopath Dr Murray Laing, 12 years her senior. A possessive husband, who objected to his beautiful young wife kissing other men on screen, Laing soon had real cause for jealousy. While filming The Farmer’s Wife in 1941, Roc plunged headlong into a torrid affair with her co-star, Michael Wilding (who was later to marry Elizabeth Taylor). This hastened the collapse of his first marriage to the actress Kay Young. Her scandalous affairs with married men earned her the name of ‘Bed Roc’ within the film industry. In Johnny Frenchman, the voluptuous Roc played opposite Ralph Michael, who was married to the distinguished actress Fay Compton and she embarked another affair. Miss Compton (who never forgave her) divorced Ralph Michael citing Roc, while Roc’s husband Murray Laing divorced her citing Ralph Michael. After filming The Wicked Lady in which ironically she played the ‘good girl’ opposite Margaret Lockwood’s villainess, Roc departed for Hollywood to star in the Western Canyon Passage. In August 1945 on her second day in Tinseltown, she met Ronald Reagan over lunch at the famous Brown Derby restaurant. They had an intense affair and Reagan wanted to marry her. In 1947 she had an affair with the Scottish director David MacDonald who was directing her in the film The Brothers, causing the breakup of his marriage. Roc married again in 1949 to André Thomas, a lighting cameraman and moved to Paris where she started to work more and more in French and Italian cinema (along with a French-Canadian feature in Quebec). In 1952 Roc co-starred with Anthony Steel in the film Something Money Can’t Buy, soon succumbing to what she described as his ‘animal magnetism’ (‘I’m afraid he was very very good in bed’). They began an affair which resulted in the birth of a son, Michael. Her husband André, although knowing the child could not be his as he could not have children, accepted paternity but suffered a massive stroke and died aged 45 in 1956. She married a third and final time to Walter Reif in 1962 and a year later retired. Right to the end of her life aged 88 on December 30th 2003, she kept a photograph of Ronald Reagan and herself gazing deeply into each other’s eyes .....
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Reference Number. 6323
An original vintage 1940s signature from an autograph book, clearly signed in pencil by Patricia Roc
Double mounted for fine display with photograph
On the reverse of the page is a pencil signature of one of her famous lovers ; Michael Wilding
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