Blog dedicated to the actress Victoria Atkin, whos most recent role, was playing 'Jason Costello' on Hollyoaks.
Victoria Atkin fans, Jason Costello fans, Jart fans, Hollyoaks fans…
Now that Vicki has left the show, I decided it was finally time to put my plan into action. What plan? Well, I’ve seen lots of videos of Jason’s storylines, dotted all around the web, and I really wanted to attempt to collect them all together, to create a playlist of the whole storyline.
Please reblog this post, and link to it in tweets if you can, so as many people can find out about this as possible.
I’ve made a playlist of videos that I can find, in the correct order, and saved them on ‘synchtube’. The playlist currently has 50 videos, and is 3 hours and 45 minutes long… it’s not yet complete, and if you’d like to try and help me collect videos, find out which bits I need help with here.
The playlist can be watched HERE (if the link is not working, please inform me via my ‘ask’)
Not directly related to Vicki, but this article from 2009 amused me…
With plenty of stage and film work behind her, the daughter of former Minister Jonathan Aitken thought she would have no problem joining the acting union Equity. But then she fell victim to the organisation’s bizarre and draconian rules - and discovered the existence of a mysterious blonde who seemed to have hijacked her identity…
I have no idea whether Franz Kafka compiled the rulebook for the actors’ union Equity. But his stories of nightmarish bureaucracy and alienation certainly inform its work, as I found when I applied to join. Put simply, Equity says I cannot exist. Why? Because I already exist.
I’d had several film parts while living abroad, including the Irish drama Beyond The Fire, and had also performed Shakespeare and Chekhov on stage. Now that I was based back in Britain, Equity membership seemed a sensible step, especially since I had landed a role in a film that paid Equity rates.
It all sounded straightforward. Equity requires a set level of acting credits, which I have, and I am registered with Spotlight, the casting directory.
But no. A Victoria Aitken was already registered as an actor, Equity told me in a letter. Theatre and film’s political commissars ruled that I couldn’t use my own name.
Hang on there - another Victoria Aitken? Was I the victim of identity theft? Was this a long-lost cousin? Or had my father Jonathan, the former Minister who served in Margaret Thatcher’s Cabinet, fathered another daughter I didn’t know about?
(He had done it once before, as my twin Alexandra and I discovered a decade or so ago when we were told that Petrina Khashoggi was not just our friend but our half-sister.)
Intrigued, I set out to find this second Victoria Aitken. Initial inquiries came to nothing. She wasn’t listed on the Internet Movie Database website, or registered with Spotlight. Equally, a search on Google showed no actors of that name, apart from me.
I wondered why this mistake had occurred. Had the brothers at Equity confused me for myself, perhaps because a producer had registered me? It appeared not.
Somebody had already taken my name and that was that. It mattered not a jot whether she could be found or not. It seemed that unions, even in the 21st Century, were still too big for their boots.
This was a serious matter. Equity membership is important. As well as validating you as an actor, it gives you insurance on set and advice about contracts.
I cold-called the ten Victoria Aitkens I found in the telephone directory. None was an actor but I did get some funny responses.
‘Why are you asking if I am an actress? Do you want to put me in a film?’ said one woman. Had she acted before? ‘Oh, I act every day in my job, love.’
Beginning to doubt there was a second Victoria Aitken, I asked Equity to prove her existence. No go. Could I be put in touch with her? No again, said an Equity operative, citing the Data Protection Act, that great modern excuse for doing nothing.
As a last resort, I asked if Equity would pass on a message to Victoria II. Perhaps she wouldn’t mind changing her name - she might have retired or changed her profession and no longer need an Equity card now that she was breeding rabbits.
The woman at Equity was blunt: ‘We will not forward any message for you.’ If I wanted to join the union, she repeated, I must change my name. Rules were rules. She then hung up on me. Now this really was the theatre of the absurd.
There is, of course, a fine tradition of actors changing their names. For some, variation has been an absolute career necessity. Tom Cruise started life as Thomas Mapother IV and Cary Grant as Archibald Leach, the latter a perfect moniker if one wanted to be typecast as a rag-and-bone man.
Even the lovely Audrey Hepburn was originally Edda van Heemstra Hepburn-Ruston. Had she been successful under that tongue-twister of a name, cinema billboards would have needed to be extended most of the way down the road.
I am certainly not alone in facing the double identity problem with Equity.
Batman actor Michael Keaton was born Michael Douglas, but another well-known actor beat him to Equity membership. The same happened with Doctor Who star David Tennant, real name David McDonald.
If a gun was held to my head, what name would I choose? Using the old joke method of taking the name of my first pet and my mother’s maiden name, I came up with Bugsy Auzcki, which was fine, but only if I wanted to corner the market in glamorous gangsters.
The other method - taking my middle name and the name of the street my first home was in - makes Spasajena Lord North. Not even vaguely plausible.
Maybe Viktoria van Heemstra Hepburn-Ruston would be spot on for edgy European arthouse productions, but it wasn’t really me.
Anyway, I wasn’t ready for a new identity. I had already made a name for myself. It was Victoria Aitken. After appearing in six films as Victoria Aitken and writing songs under my own name, I don’t see why Equity should force me to change midstream.
Besides, it’s insulting to my family, who have given me a perfectly decent name with a proud history.
At home, we keep a dusty Bible that belonged to my great-great-great-grandfather, the Rev William Aitken, who was born in 1804. His genes produced two Cabinet Ministers, my father Jonathan and my father’s great-uncle Lord Beaverbrook, who served in the wartime governments of David Lloyd George and Winston Churchill. Oh, and six MPs, five authors, three bankers and two well-known actors.
After a few days of frustration, I scoured Spotlight. This was my eureka moment. Under A, I found a Victoria Atkin. It dawned on me that Equity had made a mistake - but still the apparatchiks were having none of it. Our names were just too similar.
The Equity guidelines decree that Sophie Smith cannot join if there is already a Sophia Smith. Ditto Peter Jones if a Pete Jones is already on the books. As the union advises: ‘You never want to be confused with other artists. You may miss out on work.’
I suggested adding my middle initial ‘S’ just to keep the Atkin away from the Aitken. Surely Victoria S. Aitken would distinguish me from Victoria Atkin? That wasn’t good enough, either.
It was all so unfair. Everyone can see the difference between Atkin and Aitken. No postman or phone directory would confuse them. Nor, surely, would anyone in a profession that trades in words.
But hardliners at Equity, who have a manual thicker than the Communist Party rulebook and a veto to go with it, said otherwise. This was not so much theatre curtain as Iron Curtain.
There was one last hope. I would call Victoria Atkin, a cool blonde who is in her final year at the Central School of Speech and Drama in London. Perhaps she would obligingly change her name before she was established.
Unsurprisingly, she felt as strongly about her identity as I do about mine, but agreed that the rules were ridiculous and our names were nowhere near the same.
There is one final way round the problem. Equity says that if an actor’s subscription expires, a current or new subscriber may apply to use the same name. So, darling Victoria, be careful not to lapse on your union dues. I’ll be watching, ready to nab your name.
(Source: Daily Mail)