Sunday, May 3, 2015

THE MORGUE: The Collinson Twins make the scene, 1971

I've done a few things I'm not proud of. I let my ex-wife drag me to see TITANIC three times in 1997. I took a 9-year-old niece to to the theater under the pretense of seeing THE PRINCESS DIARIES 2, but took her to see ALIENS VS PREDATOR instead. And I unabashedly love 1971's TWINS OF EVIL, even though I recognize that its an unexceptional movie.

There's no excuse for my behavior. It's not a film I cling to out of some misplaced sense of nostalgia, or can otherwise find any deep meaning in. I love it because it's got Peter Cushing, and because I think the Collinson Twins are hot. I own the film on Blu-ray and came perilously close last week to purchasing the soundtrack ... on vinyl. If that's not a cry for help, I don't know what is.

It's difficult to feel sorry for Mary and Madeleine Collinson. They seemed to have had exactly the careers they wanted, which called for nothing more the occasional exploitation of their sexuality. This exploitation was a two-way street. It's easy to cry foul of Hammer, Hollywood and Hugh Hefner, but the Collinson's were pretty aware of what they had to offer (and how much money it was worth.) They're both perfectly charming in TWINS OF EVIL, but I can't imagine anyone — Mary and Madeleine, included Mary and Madeleine coming away from the film thinking they were going to be movie stars.

Below is a newspaper fluff piece from 1971, which includes a brief interview with the sisters published a few months before the release of TWINS OF EVIL.

Jun 13, 1971

Can twins make It In show business? For decades they've been trying, but no pair has really struck it big.

Latest duo to give It the mighty effort are Mary and Madeleine Collinson, 18, half English and half Maltese, who called much attention to themselves by posing in the altogether for “Playboy" magazine.

Madeleine and Mary have just finished acting In a Hollywood sex film, "The Love Machine," based on Jacqueline Susann's best-selling novel, and have been signed for feature roles In a new horror film, "Twins of Evil."

Both girls claim to suffer from identical loves, likes, and vibrations. "If I fall for a man," says Mary, "then so does Madeleine. If I come down with a cold, Madeleine does, too.

"If a good-looking man becomes Interested In me, as soon as he meets Madeleine he also becomes Interested In her. Men simply crave taking both of us out simultaneously. I guess it gives them a feeling of double luck or double riches.

"Before we went to work at Columbia Pictures in 'The Love Machine,' we stayed at Hugh Hefner's Playboy mansion in Chicago. It was strange and fascinating. I know a lot of people think orgies go on there all the time, but no such thing happened. Mr. Hefner has a Bunny mother who looks after all the Bunnies, and it's really a most circumspect establishment."

In London the Collinson twins live In the residence of Victor Lownes of Chicago who heads the London Playboy empire. "Here again," says Mary Collinson, "it's all very sedate and un-sexy. Mr. Lownes has a butler who looks after us like a mother."

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