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She returned to this side of the Atlantic and appeared with Catherine Deneuve in the 1986 Canadian-French film Love Songs ("tedious work," said the Times) and in a Canadian mystery, Bedroom Eyes, in which she played a psychiatrist.
"I haven't always done what I wanted to do, but I've done things," she says now. "I wanted to avoid L.A., but as it turns out, here I am. It can be very subtle, the difference between France and America, Paris and L.A. America is result-oriented. That's good. But what about the doing? Doesn't that count? In France, an actress is like a shopkeeper; she does her job. Here you're either a live actress or a dead actress. To hate someone or be jealous because they've got something I wanted, I can't do that. I like to work, though. Anybody out there?"
In 1986 she even produced and starred in her own picture, The African Rose. It was filmed over 10 weeks in the Sahara Desert in Tunisia with heat that reached 120�. The fair-skinned Haddon utilized a No. 33 sunblock, a hat and a parasol. She thought working in the Sahara was hard but worth the effort, even though the movie was never released in the U.S. It was just another disappointment to overcome. "If you love life, you have to be grateful for what you have," she says. "Change is the scariest thing. Most people don't know how to go forward."
Colleen Camp, a highly regarded character actress, is one of Haddon's best friends. They met in 1980, when Camp was playing a country singer in a Peter Bogdanovich movie, They All Laughed, which costarred Ben Gaz-zara, Audrey Hepburn and Dorothy Stratten. "Dayle's values go beyond the business," says Camp. "She doesn't care about beauty and glitz. She's real. She's interested in her own growth. She always sees somebody for more than what they are showing."
When the two women met, Camp was playing a comic role in They All Laughed and hiding something about herself. Haddon said to Camp, "There's a beauty in you. You should be modeling."
"So she got me in the Italian Harper's," says Camp. "She was always a wonderful friend, even to this day. She got me a lot of work. I'll do anything for Dayle. She has a real heart."
"It's true that production boosts morale," says Camp. "Looking for work can become very personal. It's tough when you're rejected."
Haddon now has work, lots of it. She costars with someone named Jean-Claude Van Damme in a film called Cyborg, a sci-fi thriller to be released in April. She plays Pearl Profit, a heroine whose mission is to save the world. Saving the world seems like a stretch for anybody. She has just finished filming Silence Like Glass, starring George Peppard and Jami Gertz, in which she plays another psychiatrist, and she has plans to produce two other movies.
Haddon is asked to name her three favorite animals, in order of preference. She mentions a horse, because it's wild, independent and powerful; a panther, because it's mysterious, seductive and wastes no motion; and a puppy, because it's generous, loyal and loving. The first animal, according to a psychological test, is how you see yourself; the second is how others see you; and the third is how you really are.
Down by the Santa Monica Pier, Haddon guns the black BMW 320i away from the curb—acting independent and powerful, looking mysterious and seductive and, somewhere underneath, being loyal, generous and loving.