27 Jun 2014
By circumstances unknown, perhaps somebody knew somebody, but in 1975 if I recall, Tanya was cast as a Russian princess in a cinema cigarette commercial. I vaguely remember it was only going to be shown in New Zealand and that was shot at the Directors' Institute in a lush panelled clubroom. Tanya's role consisted of being one of a royal family in a framed photo on a desk of the set filmed in close-up; a common exposition device. There was a film camera doing a complicated dolly-shot and a still photographer using a 10 x 8 plate camera to get the 'billboard' version. I remember the 'prince' in the photo was very sweet and quite gay and the Grand Dame wasn't at all posh and sat patiently between takes doing her knitting.