Louise Jameson


Louise Jameson Trivia


  • Trivia

    • Louise Jameson's professional work today is teaching drama. She also does charity work.

    • In October 2008, Louise gave the proceed of a performance of Love Letters who also starred Colin Baker to the Trinity Theatre. The venue is threatened by the drastic cut in funding from the Arts Council. The performance was preceded by a workshop given by Tom Baker.

    • As of 2008, a doll of Louise's character from Doctor Who Leela fetches around 450 pounds. The toy wasn't popular with little boys when it first came out in 1970s because it was seen as too girly.

    • Louise contributed a Doodle to the National Doodle Campaign (2008), which auctions off celebrity doodles for charity (The Neurofibromatosis Association).

    • June 2008, the opening night of Hamlet in which Louise was playing Gertrude at the Stafford Festival had to be stopped at the interval because of stormy weather. The Festival management was fearing for the safety of the actors and the audience.

    • Louise has started a Sunday drama college for teenagers.

    • Louise is a fan of the book The Secret by Rhonda Byrne. Louise recommends it on her site.

    • In December 2007, Louise's performed several dates as a Stand Up comic in Manchester.

    • In October 2007, Louise directed The Comedy of Errors starring students from Guilford School of Acting. The play was presented at the school.

    • Louise would not let her character in Doctor Who scream like her predecessors because she found that action opposed to who Leela was. The only episode of the series that Leela screams in is The Talons of Weng-Chiang, it was a reasonable reaction since she was being gnawed by a giant rat!

    • Louise toured in Bedroom Farce co-starring Colin Baker (6th Doctor, Doctor Who) in August 2007.

    • Louise and Mary Tamm trained together in RADA. Mary's character Romana I in Doctor Who was the next companion following the departure of Louise from the show.

    • For the role of Leela in Doctor Who Louise wore red contact lenses that changed her eyes from blue to brown. In the story Horror of Fang Rock Leela looks back at an explosion at the end and her eyes turn from brown to blue. This was incorporated in the story so Louise could stop wearing the contact lenses.

    • While Louise was working as a prison visitor she met Leslie Grantham, who was serving time for manslaughter, and persuaded him to become an actor. They later both appeared in Eastenders.

  • Quotes

    • Louise: (On why The Doctor in "Doctor Who" cannot be a man of a certain age like in the past) There's basically a blanket ban on anyone over the age of 35 playing The Doctor. It's to allow the show to connect to its younger audience.

    • Louise: (On loosing her "good girl" image when she became pregnant with her first child) When you have two kids out of wedlock, you stop being a good girl, don't you? It was difficult for my parents to take. I got pregnant with Harry, who is mixed-race, at the time of the Brixton riots. It was a slightly rocky time in London.

    • Louise: (On meeting David Tennant) I met him years ago when my niece was a stage manager in Scotland, in some Theatre In Education tour. When he found out that Abigail was Leela, he was - it was quite flattering - he was 'Please introduce me! I really would like to meet her'. There was a big thing about David meeting Leela. You know he started off as a Doctor Who fan, and he's the perfect Doctor. I'm told he has this wish-list, to get us all back one-by-one, so...I'm holding my breath!

    • Louise: (On what she would have done differently if she had known that she would go back later in her career to the role of Leela) I'd have gone back into it when John Nathan Turner asked me to oversee the overlap between Tom leaving and Peter arriving. I said I would do the two stories, but he said I'd have to commit for the next season. At the time I'd been offered a whole load of Shakespeare and I opted for that instead. But I think with the wisdom of hindsight I'd have gone back in for the whole season.

    • Louise: (Answering if she ever trades anecdotes about Tom Baker with Lalla Ward with whom she's worked on audio CDs for Big Finish) When asked, Lalla always says 'he's the sweetest man I've been divorced from', which is just brilliant!

    • Louise: (On stand-up work) Stand-up has gone a bit on the back-burner, to be honest. I did a course, a gig, rather successfully and then wrote some more stuff, but just lost a bit of confidence in it. But at the moment I'm working with a writer called Helen Goldwyn, and we're to-ing and fro-ing, and I hope once that River City is finished - which is what I'm recording at the minute- I'll have a 30-40 minute show to put on.

    • Louise: (On reprising the role of Leela for the new series) I'd go back, yeah. I wish they would ask. I really would love to go back... but I'm glad that I had a hand in the foundations, as it were.

    • Louise: (On whether or not her outfit as Leela was exploitative) In retrospect I suppose it was, but I wasn't expecting it. Now it might be very different. I was going into a big show and it was a shock - all this male attention afterwards. Like it or loathe it, it really gave my career a boost.

    • Louise: (On how she juggles being a mother and being an actress) I am like every working mum I live with this eternal guilt. I still worry if I haven't cooked a meal in the week. I always choose my jobs with them in mind. I used to do crazy things like commute (from London) to Bristol just to see them for breakfast.

    • Louise: (On what it takes to become an actor today) They must have a feeling of do or die. It is such an overcrowded profession.

    • Louise: (Naming the reasons why she left Doctor Who) I'd been offered Portia in The Merchant of Venice at the Bristol Old Vic. That was the biggest carrot. I was also shortlisted for a movie, which didn't happen, which was Yanks. I felt that careerwise, Doctor Who had done about as much it could do. And, as I say, I was rather depressed with saying 'what is it Doctor?'.

    • Louise: (On comparing her character Leela in Doctor Who to herself) I like to think that I'm as 'open' as she is. She's very honest. I don't think I'm quite as aggressive.

    • Louise: (Her impressions on Tom Baker's attitude while she worked with him in Doctor Who) He was very dedicated to the part. He got very frustrated sometimes. He is really intelligent. He has a very, very high IQ and if he was dealing with people who didn't quite match that, he wasn't always the most tolerant person. His love and care and dedication to the programme never faltered, never failed. He really, really did work very hard at it and I think when he felt people weren't matching that he got frustrated.

    • Louise: (On hard it is not to be typecast after being on a show for some time) The problem is that you can kiss goodbye to two years TV work after appearing in a long-running series.

    • Louise: (on the camaraderie that still exists between the cast of Tenko) It was such an intense and extraordinary time for me. The Tenko cast had such a hard-core sisterhood, which still exists. There's six of us who meet up regularly and chat on the phone once a week.

    • Louise Jameson: (On how her exit from Eastenders was handled by John Yorke the executive producer from 1999-2001) They handled it very badly. It was disappointing and very humiliating. John Yorke was very rude. He never consulted with me over what he said to the press. In every other series I was involved in it was discussed with great tact and tenderness. I was in Emmerdale and I was killed off and that was handled well.

    • Louise: (On succeeding Elisabeth Sladen on Doctor Who) I think it was absolutely right by changing the companion character completely, from Sarah Jane to Leela. There was no way anyone could recreate what Liz had done because she had done it so well. I didn't feel in competition in anyway.