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In association with The Royal Bank of Scotland

Zeta-Jones lined up for sex-change screen role

Feb 9 2006

By Kate Mansey Daily Post Staff


Catherine Zeta-Jones

A LIVERPOOL man's remarkable struggle to be accepted as a woman is set to be made into a major Hollywood movie.

Welsh actress Catherine Zeta-Jones has been lined up to star in the film depicting the life of April Ashley - the first British transsexual.

Born as a boy in Liverpool in Sefton General Hospital in Smithdown Road in1935 and christened George Jamieson, he grew up in extreme poverty in a dockland slum in Pitt Street.

Struggling with his identity, the young George joined the Navy at 14 and, tortured by his desire to be a woman, attempted suicide aged 16 and was held in a high security mental hospital.

But after joining a cabaret show in Paris and having a sex change operation in Casablanca, George became April. April's life story will be given the Hollywood treatment but there will be no need for embellishment to draw in crowds at the cinema.

April, now 70, led her life at the centre of the fashion world and mingled with high society.

She made a name for herself as a top model with vogue, hung out with John Lennon and had nights of passion with Omar Sharif.

In 1983 it was also reported that she spent the night with the late Michael Hutchence, who at the time was 25 years her junior.

Today she still receives Christmas cards from deputy prime minister John Prescott who she once met in a boarding house.


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