January 9th 2013: A sad day indeed. Early this morning I received an email from Fenella Howard telling me of the passing of her beloved Aunt Doodie - yesterday afternoon, peacefully in her sleep. Whilst the news was not unexpected - Doodie had been ill for some time - it was still a truly saddening piece of news.
As much as Leslie, her father, was unique amongst movie stars - so Doodie was one unique lady - funny, irreverent, kindly, occasionally scathing and a true Brit. No one who met her or got to know this remarkable lady will ever forget her - for myself and Tracy meeting Doodie proved to be life changing. I treasure the friendship that developed between us and my heartfelt condolences go to her many family members.
Tom Hamilton, Repo Films
Press conference and debut to be held at Howard's former home
Tom Hamilton's feature length documentary “Leslie Howard: The Man Who Gave a Damn” will be screened in the cinema room at Howard's former home in Dorking, Surrey. The long-awaited screening will coincide with a press conference and the unveiling of a plaque in Howard's honor at Stowe Maries.
The film, five years in the making, looks at the life, career and passions of Leslie Howard, best known for his role in “Gone With the Wind.” While chronicling his Hollywood film and New York stage careers, it also reveals much of the informal Leslie through never-before-seen home movies and the memories of his surviving daughter Doodie. The film also takes an in-depth look at this role and importance in the British war effort and the events leading up to his disappearance in 1943.
The narrator of the film is Derek Partridge, in whose life Leslie played a brief but incredibly important role. Partridge, who was seven years old at the time, gave up his seat on the ill-fated flight on June 1st 1943 so Howard could have a seat. This brings a poignant and personal feel to the story.
After the launch of the film in September, “Leslie Howard: The Man Who Gave a Damn” will be entered into key film festivals and will be shown in the United States on Turner Classic Movies.
The Guardian, September 12, 2010