What happened to Carolyn Farina?


I have had this post on the actress Carolyn Farina, who played “Audrey Rouget” (above) in the movie “Metropolitan” (1990), here for a long time and it has had a lot of readers. However I have moved it to here:


I have left the comments for this post below. Some of them may be of interest.

112 responses to this post.

  1. This piece is part of an longer post on a number of film directors and their movies.


  2. I recently found this podcast on Metropolitan:


    It is interesting enough, but contains a lot of false notes and inaccuracies. There are too many to mention, but they say that Audrey’s little brother makes fun of her small bust at the beginning of the movie. No, he poked fun at her “enormous” bottom (which is silly because she had a slim, boyish figure).

    They do make the suggestion to google on “Whit Stillman Republican”, which is actually worth doing.


  3. This is the Wikipedia article on Carolyn Farina, to which I have added this blog post as a reference. One of the comments in the Wikipedia article’s “talk” section asks what happened to the actress. This blog post attempts, among other things, to address that question as far as possible.


  4. […] There is a website that specialises in picking out “jarring cameo/bit parts in movies” and featu… […]


  5. I want to know if she got married and started a family.

    I guess she didn’t.


    • I would love to know that too. She is still known as “Carolyn Farina” in her (limited) professional work. But she may have married. A homosexual online journalist in New York, Tyler Coates, said he had spoken to her recently, and what a thrill it was. I asked him about this, thinking I could get some more information, but he never replied.

      She has or keeps a low profile, and maybe she prefers it that way. She gives the impression of being shy in real life.

      I have a bit of a crush on her and her character, Audrey Rouget, and I collect trivia about her. But there is not much out there, most of it old.


    • Posted by Maria on July 31, 2014 at 6:17 am

      No she never got married


      • Posted by Julian O'Dea on July 31, 2014 at 7:44 am

        Thanks for the interesting information, Maria.

        May I ask how you know that?

  6. I have found what looks like the entirety of “Little Noises” on YouTube. Carolyn Farina appeared in this, when she was about 28. Should be interesting.


    • So far, I think I have spotted her cleaning outside a shop, crouching down. It looks like her. She is apparently the cousin of the main character, who is an aspiring writer living with his aunt and uncle who seem to run a fish shop. Hence her role as “Cousin Linny”. If that is the extent of her role, and I hope it is not, she has no lines and one appearance. Oh dear. I am surprised she gets into the final credits. She is not in the opening credits, of course.

      Terrible role by the look of it, unless I have missed something. I cannot see how her role as Jane Archer in Age of Innocence could be any worse. My daughter is downloading that for me now.

      I suppose that, by appearing in Little Noises, she might have hoped to be spotted for further roles. She was still an attractive girl at 28, but it was her acting in Metropolitan that stood out as much as her appearance, and her acting was not on display in Little Noises.

      It gets worse. Her name is actually misspelt in the credits as Caroline Farina, instead of Carolyn Farina.

      Terrible role.


  7. The 2011 picture looks like she let somebody else pick her clothes out and do her hair and makeup. She also is having trouble in that public appearance. Doesn’t know whether to smile or not, or how to stand and what to do with her hands.

    The skin on her chest and hands looks good. She seems to be staying healthy and keeping her weight down, and a lot of working class people just start falling apart completely in their 40’s. You can see she is shy and/or private, which probably indicates some groundedness. She is in my age cohort, so I wish her the very best.

    I’ll stop speculating, because it will put me in a bad mood.


    • Yes to all that. I think the photographer has probably chosen the best of several shots. She looks worse in the movie, playing the waitress, and I think there is something odd about her face. Perhaps a facelift.

      I could be really tasteless and say that if she has had a facelift, it looks like a bad, cheap one. Whereas Elizabeth McGovern has reportedly had plastic surgery, but looks much better, perhaps because she could afford better work. The truth is that plump girls get fat as they age, and slender girls get scrawny. Slimmer girls often get very lined faces, and it is a problem.

      Her expression in the publicity shots suggest pleasure but shyness.

      I didn’t like her performance in Damsels in Distress. It was an unrewarding role, which she did her best with, but if I had not known it was her I doubt I would have picked her out. She doesn’t look familiar and her physical appearance is indifferent at best.

      I am not sure she was working class. As an Australian, I must miss many nuances, but I suspect she was more lower middle class. She once mentioned her brother the engineer in an interview, as I recall, and said “he got the brains”. So she had a sibling who was able to become a professional, which suggests some familial competence and resources. On the other hand, there may not have been much spare money, and I wonder if she had to look for work only in the New York area because, like Tom in Metropolitan, her “funds were limited.”

      There are so many cruel ironies in life. In Little Noises, in which she appears very briefly, there is a theme of the importance of money and education. The socially and artistically successful writers and agents look down very much on the “losers” and “wannabes”. It is fierce. Farina was far from just a wannabe, but neither was she a huge success. I noticed recently that Sigourney Weaver, for example, came from a very good family. Jodie Foster has a high IQ. Helena Bonham Carter comes from a very prominent English family. And so on.


  8. […] is a sweet review and normally I would just add it to my long blog post on the career of Carolyn Farina but there a couple of things about which bothered me enough that I wanted to just make some note of […]


  9. […] I have written about her career here. […]


  10. […] As my devoted readers will know, I have an interest (OK an obsession) with a couple of films, one of them being Metropolitan, a movie directed by Whit Stillman and starring Carolyn Farina. […]


  11. […] they are fully accredited and in their late twenties to get a husband. As I have written here and here, the second post being in relation to an actress, a woman of 22 is vastly different in male eyes to […]


  12. […] the online journalist. We share an interest in the director Whit Stillman and the erstwhile actress Carolyn Farina. But Mr Coates is best-known for his minute accounts of his own […]


  13. Posted by Julian O'Dea on May 16, 2014 at 12:16 pm


    Another Italian-American actress, of a rather different stripe, has her career reviewed at a website that examines “What the Hell Happened?” to various actors and actresses.


  14. […] have updated my post on the career of actress Carolyn Farina, one of my most consistently popular posts. It is partly a discussion of the all-too-brief career […]


  15. […] A more recent version of this essay may be found here. […]


  16. […] My main post on this actress, a favourite of mine is here. […]


  17. […] have written a detailed screen biography of her, here, which is one of my most read […]


  18. […] this for “Audrey” and she looks a bit like Audrey from his first film (played by Carolyn Farina). Could it be that the director, Whit Stillman, is telling us […]


  19. […] I continue to update my long, detailed post on the screen career of actress Carolyn Farina with idle speculation about her (apparent lack of) […]


  20. Posted by Gerry Kachmarski on September 21, 2014 at 10:03 pm

    Whatever happened to Edward Clements?


  21. […] included a picture of Molly Ringwald, with darker hair, at my Carolyn Farina post. It certainly shows the resemblance that some people have seen between the young Farina and […]


    • Thanks, Dan, but I doubt that is the same woman. Of course, I could be wrong. There is a physical resemblance.

      I wrote recently to Miss Farina asking her about her career, in particular her experience making the film “Little Noises”, but I have not received a reply so far.

      For some reason I have had an avalanche of interest in Carolyn Farina today. I am not sure why.


  22. Posted by Dan Hand on September 29, 2014 at 9:00 am

    I am not certain that it is her, either; but, the eyes, in particular, seem very similar to the eyes of the actress Carolyn, at that 2011 film premier!?! There are really not very many Carolyn Farinas in New York City from which to choose, after all! If THE Carolyn really is the daughter of Harriet, it appears, according to whitepages.com, that they still live with one another, in an apartment in Hollis, Queens, in New York City!?! I also notice that THIS Carolyn does not list any higher education on her linkedin.com page, which is quite unusual. If they are one and the same Carolyn, I could understand her leaving off a brief stint at Queens College, over thirty years ago.


    • Yes, Dan, I have also just had a good look at her and compared her with the woman in the shots from the film premier, and the resemblance is indeed striking. (I have updated my post on her too with the photo). The eyes, eyebrows, hair and cheeks are very similar.

      My guess is that she has moved home recently to be with her mother.

      As for her education, yes it was brief and she does not appear to be especially academic. To be honest, it looks like she works in childhood autism, which is ironic because I have a child on the autism spectrum. The school is in Queens, so that would make sense too because, as you say, that appears to be where she lives.

      I get the feeling she is rather a nice person, and working in such a field might appeal to her.

      May I ask, are you the person who has been reading my Carolyn Farina post very carefully? Because someone has racked up over 400 views in the last day, which is phenomenal.


  23. P.S. As to why you have had the surge in interest, today, it is undoubtedly because Turner Classic Movies showed “Metropolitan” (as well as “Barcelona”) last night, here in the United States, with Whit Stillman himself on the set, with host Robert Osborne, to discuss the films and his career. I have had an abiding crush on Carolyn Farina since I first saw “Metropolitan” (on television or video, not in the theater), perhaps in 1991, but certainly many, many years ago. There were certainly some attractive Spanish women in “Barcelona” (which I had never seen before last night), but none to get under one’s skin, as Carolyn obviously did, lo those many years ago.


    • Yes, that would explain it.

      I do think she was very cute, and is my “type”, which is unusual because my “type” is not usually represented among actresses. And, of course, she was playing a very charming girl in “Metropolitan”.

      She bore some resemblance to my wife when I married her. My wife looked a bit like a mashup (is that the expression?) of Carolyn Farina, Sean Young and Elizabeth McGovern.


      • I now realise that (if it is her) she was employed at an autism school in Queens but appears now to work in the West Hempstead Union Free School District, which I think is in Nassau County. (I am Australian, so this is all a bit vague for me). If so, she must have a fairly long commute.

  24. It is only about a twelve-mile commute (and much less still, as the crow flies), since she lives in the southeastern corner of New York City. A decade ago, I had to commute from Staten Island to Valley Stream (also in Nassau County) using public transportation only, on most days– which could take me around three hours, each way! (Fortunately, I got laid off after only four weeks.) Anyway, I definitely prefer large-breasted women, as a rule; but, rules are made to be broken, after all! I had a very similar reaction to Carolyn, when I first saw her on screen, as I did to the ill-fated Gale Russell in “The Uninvited” (1944)– although, I do think that Gale, at age 19, before her drinking destroyed both her looks and her life, was simply beautiful, whereas Carolyn, at age 24 or 25, was more pretty and lovely. Carolyn is spoken of as very shy, and Gale, from childhood on, was said to be pathologically so– which is apparently why she started drinking, on the job, while making the aforementioned film (which I believe was her second one). The shyness of each actress comes through on the screen, and I find that very appealing– especially in the person of a very attractive young woman!


    • I can’t find her in the staff lists of any of the schools in the relevant district, but perhaps that is because she is only interning.

      Yes, I am indifferent as to breasts (although my wife is actually fairly busty), so Carolyn Farina’s rather boyish figure never bothered me.

      Yes, Whit Stillman said she was shy in real life. She conveys reticence in her role as Audrey Rouget, but she is an actress after all. But it does seem that she is retiring in real life too. She does not appear to have a media profile at all, and has given no recent interviews. An online journalist called Tyler Coates did say he spoke to her not long ago, but he gave no details. Even if she were to get my letter, that tendency to privacy and reticence probably implies she will not answer. Pity. But it was a long shot.

      I imagine her, as I said, as a rather nice person (although, Goodness’ knows, appearances can be deceptive). It might actually explain certain puzzles. I think it might explain why she stayed in the Queens area, to support her divorced – and now aged – mother. Nevertheless, as I rather crassly said above, I do wonder why she never married (at least there is no evidence of it, and a commenter called “Maria” said that she never had, although she would not elaborate).

      Another possibility is that she is a Lesbian, which would be ironic considering the crush I have on her screen character (and it seems I am not alone in that regard).

      She lived in Rego Park until recently, near the Long Island Expressway, I believe, which might have been convenient for her work. The apartment was a very modest one, and that of her mother in Hollis is only slightly less modest.

      The more I look at the expression of the women in those photos, the more convinced I am that it is the same woman.

      I don’t think she aged terribly well, but she was indeed an extraordinarily pretty girl – perhaps rather than beautiful. And a lot of her prettiness depended on delicate qualities that tend to be lost with age.


  25. Posted by Dan Hand on October 1, 2014 at 12:48 pm

    The premier picture from “Damsels in Distress” was taken on April 6, 2012, and not in 2011, as I had originally thought. (The picture premiered in Italy, in the fall of 2011, and played in several foreign film festivals, later that same year; its American premiers took place on April 6, 2012, in both New York and L.A.) Carolyn would have been 48, then, assuming that she was born in January of 1964, as her Wikipedia entry states. I agree with your amended comment, in your post above, that she looks plumper in the cropped picture that she has used for LinkedIn.com (assuming, again, that it is her, which I believe that it is); however, she also looks noticeably younger in that photograph, to my eyes, than she did at the 2012 premier. I suspect that the photograph that she cropped was taken at a (non-celebrity) social event, like a wedding reception, and that it actually was taken when she was in her early forties, or even her late thirties. (As someone whose weight has fluctuated quite widely, during my adulthood, I know that I have looked markedly different, even just facially, over these many years, and that those changes due to weight have been neither linear nor unidirectional.)

    By the way, the location used for the fictional college in “Damsels in Distress” was actually a Staten Island park known as Snug Harbor. I lived less than a mile from there, for about three years, and I occasionally attended events there. In July of 2006, for instance, I went to a free concert there, with a couple of English visitors that I was entertaining, given by the New York Philharmonic Orchestra– which was quite the treat, especially for those of us in the most outer of the four outer boroughs of New York City!

    Finally, I do not recall reading this 2012 quote in your long post, above, which I just came across at “The New Statesman” Web site:


    Stillman cast one of the doyennes of mumblecore, Greta Gerwig, in the lead role, as well as giving parts to Taylor Nichols and Carolyn Farina, who both appeared in Metropolitan. “I was always frustrated that Carolyn didn’t get much work. I think it was because she was typecast as the Metropolitan character, when in fact she has a much broader range.” In this film, Farina plays a waitress in a diner. “She had the right background to play that,” Stillman says. “She grew up in Queens, New York. Thank gosh we talked her into doing the part.”



    • Interesting.

      And what this shows is how hard this kind of research can be. I assumed that premiere was in 2011, and not 2012 as is now obvious. Also, I assumed that the LinkedIn photo was more recent, and that, to put it crudely, she had been eating too many cakes at her teaching jobs. But yes, it could have been an older picture. (A point I did not mention above, but which also makes me nearly certain it is the same woman, is that there is a similar tension at the mouth, and perhaps an underbite, visible in both photos).

      I noticed that her appearance changed subtly even throughout “Metropolitan”. Women will tell you that they become more bloated just before their periods, and in some other scenes she may have been cold or tired (the physical stresses of the shoot are frequently remarked on by the actors in that film).

      My impression was that Carolyn Farina had grown thinner as she aged, so I was surprised to see her looking chubbier in that LinkedIn photo (I am also 99% sure it is her).

      As for Stillman’s remark, he has certainly expressed regret on a couple of occasions that Carolyn F did not get more work. The most interesting part of that latest quote is that he said he had to talk her into doing the part (and I suspect she simply used her normal accent to play the waitress).

      I was going to write that Farina was like someone who got lucky and won a lottery (in a virtual sense) and, like so many such winners, she did not know what to do with the largesse. But that is hardly fair, because she did in fact land other parts, and the role of Janey Archer was perfectly respectable and, if you look closely, you can see that she is doing a sterling job in the role. She has quite a few lines, but she is very much a supporting actor. I think Scorsese is a terrific director (The Departed is a fabulous film, for example). But he was out of his depth in a subtle costume drama like The Age of Innocence, and clearly missed an opportunity to really do something with Carolyn F.

      I have to be blunt and say too, that Carolyn has not managed to build a good life for herself in the long run, despite her early success.

      It seems to me that she could have found lasting success by 1) becoming a top actress, 2) becoming a character actress, 3) becoming a drama teacher, perhaps at a specialist performing arts high school, 4) moving into another area of show business (such as a casting director), or 5) marrying well and becoming a “trophy wife”.

      She did not achieve any of that, and, although I would be the last to say that worldly success is all-important, she is basically working fitfully in low-grade teaching jobs and living in a very modest apartment in a very dreary part of New York.

      Nevertheless, to all appearances, she seems content, and she will always be remembered for her role as “Audrey Rouget”.


      • Posted by Dan Hand on October 1, 2014 at 2:05 pm

        As a preternatural underachiever myself, I would be the last person to cast any figurative stones Carolyn’s way– crush or no crush! I come from a blue-collar background myself, in a now-moribund industrial city, but went on to earn three advanced university degrees. A lot of my old acquaintances, especially from law school and business school, are very rich; I certainly am not–which is wholly my own fault. At the end of the day, though, how one feels about how one’s personal relationships, familial and otherwise, have turned out is far more likely to tell the tale of whether someone feels that his or her life has been well- or misspent. I have no possible way of knowing how Carolyn Farina feels about how her life has turned out, after her long-ago brush with leading-lady status. I do know this, however: nearly a decade ago, they were filming a major Hollywood film on the Staten Island Ferry, as I rode it over to Manhattan. Everyone seemed to be talking about the leading lady, whom I did not recognize, since I had not been to a new movie in several years (nor since). The actress was Brittany Murphy, who was then in her late twenties. She has been dead, now, for almost five years. Far more people know her name and recognize her picture than they do for Carolyn Farina. Would Carolyn wish to trade places with the late Ms. Murphy? Perhaps…but I rather doubt it!

      • One reason I have written so much at this post – apart from my feeling that she was one of the most delightful actresses I have seen – is that I wanted to explore the theme of success and failure in life. As someone now retired, and approaching 60, my thoughts turn to my own life. I feel content, but I also know that success is a very chancy thing.

        Not only Carolyn Farina, but also Whit Stillman, provide fine case studies in the difficulties of achieving lasting success. The director is clearly interested in the topic himself, and it is a theme in “Metropolitan”. He is extremely clear-sighted, although I think he deliberately threw that away and went commercial in “Damsels”. But, in line with an old theme of this blog, everything that the “red pill” manosphere guys say these days was said clearly and very early by “Nick Smith” in “Metropolitan”, talking about why “Rick von Slonecker” was such a success with women. Stillman really knows men and women, but it has not made him cynical.

        Australians do not value getting rich as much as Americans (partly because a man can live on a modest salary and be comfortable here: crime is low, the weather is kind, there is a strong social security system, there is less pressure for success, and housing is relatively cheap – nicer women too I suspect.)

        So, CF not becoming rich is not the issue for me. But I do wonder why she never married. That seems very odd. (Assuming my informant “maria” was correct.)

        As for not being well-known, as I wrote above her character has achieved the status of a minor, but well-loved, icon. I have a friend who implies that my writing all this stuff is a waste of time, given her relative obscurity, but in fact Carolyn Farina and her character Audrey are very much a part of the culture; and, as I have found in assembling the above bibliography, she has had a surprisingly strong influence on quite a few people. “Audrey Rouget” even has her own indie song, “I Wanna Be Audrey Rouget”!

        Audrey is a character type which is certainly not fashionable: the pretty, virginal ingenue. Much more common once, almost a stock character, but now rare and so all the more valuable. In fact, I was going to note at one of my recent posts that the characters played by Molly Ringwald in The Breakfast Club and Carolyn Farina in Metropolitan are the only young women explicitly portrayed, positively, as virgins in modern cinema. To my knowledge.

    • ERRATUM: That series of photographs was actually taken at a special screening of “Damsels in Distress” that took place on Monday, April 2, 2012– four days before the film’s dual American premiers, in New York and Los Angeles.


      NEW YORK, NY – APRIL 02: Actress Carolyn Farina attends The Cinema Society with Town & Country and Brooks Brothers screening of ‘Damsels in Distress’ at the Tribeca Grand Screening Room on April 2, 2012 in New York City. (Photo by Charles Eshelman/FilmMagic)


      MEA CULPA!!


  26. Posted by Dan Hand on October 1, 2014 at 2:45 pm

    Despite the ideological delusions of the radical egalitarians who now rule over virtually all of (what is left of) Western Civilization, what I have been saying since my childhood, lo those many years ago, is still an essential truism: “We can’t all be winners!”


  27. Yes, I am OCD– but that still has nothing to do with my penchant for Italian chicks! Also, I would have been just as attracted to the young Carolyn Farina if I had spotted her on that Harold Square park bench, on her lunch break from Macy’s, instead of in a movie, playing an UHB– although her native Queens accent (which I have yet to hear from her) might have been off-putting to my native Midwestern ears!?! By the way, there is a picture, which you link to elsewhere, that tells us when it was taken: the clapperboard reads 2/8/89– which, here in the States, means February 8, 1989. So, Carolyn was barely 25, then, if she was born in January 1964.


    • We have Italian girls in Australia too, and I have had crushes on one or two. There was one at work, but I was and am married, so I had to resist her. Which I did. I saw a cute Italian girl in Sydney on a recent visit, working I suppose at her parents’ coffee shop. I love the contrast between their dark hair and smooth ivory skin (incidentally, CF has rather pink cheeks in Metropolitan, and I would not be surprised if she is half-Irish or something. Her brother looks quite Irish in his fb photo).

      You know that the photo of her on that park bench was in “Harold Square”? I suppose that is where Macy’s is. Yes, she looks cute in that shot, and I like the slim but feminine figure she presents. I am sorry to say it makes me speculate about spanking her cute little bottom.

      I cannot see how the photo could have been taken in February 1989, because I assume it and the one in the store (she is wearing the same dress, so I am assuming it was the same shoot) were taken after the movie was released. Isn’t it most likely that the To The Top article was written and photos taken to illustrate it at the same time?

      But if there is information that proves otherwise, that just leaves me confused.

      I was thinking, partly to help myself nod off last night, that there are five great sequences in the movies that I would say were the epitome of feminine charm, and perhaps I should link to them in a post one day. I would say, firstly, Elizabeth McGovern shopping with Kevin Bacon in “She’s Having a Baby”. The second would be Sean Young being given the “Voight-Kampff test” in “Blade Runner”. The third (in no particular order) would be Molly Ringwald dancing in “The Breakfast Club”. The fourth, “Claire” the model running on the beach with Charlie Hawke in the music video to “The Boys of Summer”. And the fifth would be Carolyn Farina discussing Jane Austen with “Tom” in “Metropolitan”.

      Yes, CF’s real accent would have bothered me too, partly because I was brought up a bit of a snob. I suspect she uses it in “Damsels in Distress”, which is a movie that does her no favours. And, of course, personality and opinions would make or break the illusion. For example, Molly Ringwald was a stunning girl, and is still an attractive and intelligent woman, but her reported views are pretty much anathema to mine on various issues.

      Crushes are just that. Crushes. The important thing is to turn a crush into a wife in real life.


      • I think what it is, is that I like women whose colouring is distinctive, who look special, perhaps because of colour contrast or unusual colouring like redheads. Smooth skin. And maybe a bit willowy. I don’t go on voluptuous, nor blondes typically.

        My wife had colouring very like Elizabeth McGovern’s when I married her.

      • Posted by Dan Hand on October 3, 2014 at 4:00 am

        Sorry to have been unclear, above! I was referring to a photograph taken during the making of “Metropolitan” itself. Carolyn and two others are in the back of a taxi cab, before the camera is rolling, and the clapperboard is visible, showing the filming date: “2/8/89”– i.e., February 8, 1989. Carolyn had turned 25 the previous month, if Wikipedia is to be believed. The photos taken by “People” were undoubtedly taken in August or September of 1990, between the film’s premier, on August 3, and the publication of the article. (The cover date is October 1, but I think that the issue would have been available the previous week, on or after September 24.) Before the film’s release, “People” would not have known Carolyn Farina from the Man in the Moon! As for Harold Square, it is next to the flagship Macy’s store, where Carolyn was working in the summer of 1990; so, I am assuming that the picture that I like so much likely was taken there– rather than in, say, Central Park, twenty-five blocks uptown– probably during her lunch break. As for Carolyn Farina’s matrilineal ethnic extraction, it would not surprise me at all if Harriet Farina is a full-blooded Irish American, or something similar, who married within her faith, but outside of her ethnic neighborhood!?! I have a close friend whose maiden name was obviously Italian (Farina, by the way, is also a Spanish-derived surname!), as her father was a pure Sicilian American; but, her mother was a pure Slovak American– as was my own mother. She looks much more Italian than Slovak– especially her nose– but her hair is medium brown, rather than dark brown. Carolyn looks fairly typical, for a contemporary Italian American– of whom I have known (and often longed after) many. She looks decidedly more ethnic to me when she was age 48 (in 2012), however, than she did at 25 or 26 (in 1989 or 1990), when she could have more easily passed for French– or Irish! I have not seen the picture of her brother, yet….

      • I think a woman looks her best at about 25, the age my wife was when I met her, IIRC. I think she looks less like a girl, and more like a young woman.

        I don’t think it is fair to involve her family too much, but there is a Steven Farina, who I am pretty sure is her older brother, on Facebook, and his picture makes him look a bit Irish.

        My wife and I are both English/Irish, and I think we both look it. I mean, you can see the Irish in both of us. I am not quite sure why I crush so much on pale-skinned brunettes, but maybe it is some atavistic Irish thing! In any case, there is a photo near my desk here, showing two couples from the Sixties playing tug-of-war on the beach, and the photos shows a blond couple, and a more brunet couple with the girl at least looking ethnic, perhaps Italian. I wonder if the idea was not to show the old Australian “bronzed Aussies” and also the new Australian, more Mediterranean types. But in fact, I find the brunette girl more appealing.

        Any ethnic type that produces a similar brunette with smooth, pale skin will do it for me. Italians, some French girls, even Vietnamese.

        We have “Irish” Catholics, “English” Catholics, “Italian” Catholics around here, and they were all represented in the Catholic singles club where my wife and I met. No “Vietnamese” Catholics, because they had not arrived then. The “Irish” Catholics, like my wife and I, mostly married each other, and the “Italian” Catholics the same. But there is no hard-and-fast rule. And anyway, both my wife and I have English ancestry and conversions were at play in our both ending up cradle Catholics.

        I took Farina to be an Italian name, and to mean something like farmer or wheat. I never checked.

        BTW, I am assembling that video post of the most charming women on film.

        Yes, I think it was clever of Stillman to finesse her appearance by calling her “Rouget”, and letting the viewer assume she had French ancestry, presumably Huguenot or the like, since the “Midnight Mass” she attends was actually Episcopalian. I discussed this point at a relatively recent post.

  28. Posted by Dan Hand on October 3, 2014 at 6:25 am

    I would be very surprised– and also deeply disappointed!– to learn that Carolyn Farina is Hispanic, rather than Italian American; I was merely pointing out that Farina (often with a tilda over the “n”) is a Spanish-derived surname, in addition to being an Italian one. (For instance, Joan Baez’ late sister was married to, and widowed by, a Cuban-American writer surnamed Farina– who had been the college roommate of well-known writer Thomas Pynchon!) The (unfortunate) love of my life– my law-school girlfriend, who is now a very successful, and thus presumably wealthy, insurance-defense lawyer– was of Norwegian, Swedish and German extraction. She had pale skin, beautiful blue eyes, and small and delicate hands and feet– but also very dark brown hair, which looked almost black, except when the sunlight would highlight the brown as such. (She also was large-breasted, which was very much in keeping with my general preference!) She has aged less well than Ms. Farina– but mostly in that she got quite heavy! (She was never as svelte as Carolyn Farina, in that same age range, in their mid-20s, which is when we dated and, ultimately, broke up; Carolyn is almost five years younger than my ex-.)


    • I just remembered that my Facebook page:


      currently has my main cover photo showing the Chinese actress Maggie Cheung. Lovely colouring and skin.

      I have now put up that “five most charming women on film” post. Not sexiest, but most charming. They are mostly presumably meant to be “good girls”, which is what I have always liked.

      Yeah, slips of girls like CF become scrawny and lined; and the bustier type become plump. That’s life.

      I actually prefer dark brown hair to black and I prefer blue eyes on a woman, which is my wife to a tee. As for breasts, I often hardly notice, or used not to when I was younger, although I came to appreciate such charms a bit as I got older.

      And yes, quite a few Nordic girls are dark-haired.


  29. I have noted belatedly (as now is my wont, in my oncoming dotage) that IMDb claims that “Metropolitan” was filmed from January 25 through February 27, 1989. (That information, which is not sourced there, appears on the page citing the purported budget and box-office results for the film.) I just watched an interview in which Whit Stillman talks about filming necessary footage, like attendees leaving deb parties, in December (i.e., 1988); so, I assume that the cited range, if otherwise accurate, refers to all principal photography, involving the film’s own cast!?! Anyway, unless she was born sometime during the last week of January, it appears (again, assuming that Wikipedia and other sources that I have seen, to date, are correct) that Carolyn Farina had just turned 25 years of age, at most 24 days earlier, when the principal photography began.


    • I thought I read somewhere that she was born on 1 January 1964. Wikipedia just says January 1964.

      It seems likely that footage of the Midnight Mass at St Thomas’ Episcopalian church, Manhattan, might have been filmed in December 1988 too, for obvious reasons. I have always assumed too that the shots of “Audrey” with “her mother” at that service were filmed separately, but who knows?

      As an instance of how easy it is to get things wrong, I nearly assumed that this was a Catholic “Midnight Mass” and that Audrey was meant to be Catholic, and one reviewer said that she went to St Patrick’s (Catholic) Cathedral, Manhattan. But, no.

      I notice that one of the actors recently tweeted about how cold it was. And the sequence of Audrey shopping sadly for gifts at Xmas certainly looks like she is feeling cold, and her cheeks are all pink. (She is wearing lovely, quality clothes and a handbag, perhaps sourced from someone’s wardrobe, since they were filming in Stillman’s WASP friends’ apartments.)


      Such a sad scene, with the lovely choice of “Dry Your Eyes” as background music.

      I am not sure why she was crying in church though. I always assumed it was because Tom was not interested, but someone said it was because of the beauty of the service:


      The high altar end of the cathedral, seen in the movie:



      • Posted by Julian O'Dea on February 2, 2015 at 3:44 am

        This website gives her birth date as 1 January 1964:

        That website includes these photos. The second one is not of her, but is in fact Australian actress Frances O’Connor. I tried to leave a note to that effect, but was unable to, so I contented myself with downvoting the picture.

        This is a nice photo, actually of Carolyn Farina, from her appearance in “Metropolitan”:

        The website gives her height as unknown, but I would estimate, based on her appearance next to the other actors and actresses in Metropolitan, that she is about 5 foot 4 inches or a little taller. This photo from the movie premiere suggests a woman of average height at most. She is not a tall actress like Geena Davis or Sean Young:


        [From Left to Right on the photo: Carolyn Farina, Ed Clements, Alison Rutledge-Parisi. That is, Carolyn Farina is on Ed Clements’ right arm.]

        Another photo from the same event, with some background information on the photograph.

      • Posted by Mark on May 15, 2015 at 6:36 pm

        I’ve always thought Audrey was crying in church because of Serena’s comment on the steps that Tom thought she was “well read.” While not an insult, it was delivered in a way to seem intentionally lackluster.

      • Posted by Julian O'Dea on May 15, 2015 at 11:51 pm

        Yes, Mark, I think that is basically correct. She is upset because Tom is not interested in her as a woman, beyond finding her “well read” and OK to talk too.

        As you imply, the worst insults are often those that are unintended.

        I am not sure if the director intended it, but there are some interesting sociosexual aspects to this film, beyond the obvious themes of seduction by the likes of Rick. Tom and Audrey are nice young people but they are pretty clueless about how to act in affairs of the heart. Tom is dense about Audrey, although he states in the end that she “looks great”. Well, it took him long enough to notice! (A lot of commentary on this film refers to Audrey as less attractive, especially compared with “Serena Slocum”, but I think that just shows that people don’t look carefully. “Audrey” is at least extraordinarily pretty, even if she is not long-haired and busty.)

        Meanwhile Audrey makes a good start by talking to Tom at an intellectual level, but she tends to correct him, which is bound to be a passion-killer, and she only belatedly realises that she will have to showcase her femaleness, not just her mind. In a way, her question near the end of the film, “Do you really think I am flat-chested?”, is the sexiest thing she ever says to Tom; because it alludes to his physical preferences and to her own body.

  30. I used to attend Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, during the brief time that I lived in Manhattan (corner of Park Avenue and East 101st Street), several years ago, even though it was obviously not my local parish. I just enjoyed the place, and preferred the congregation, down in Midtown. I felt alive down there– instead of like my life was in danger, up close to Spanish Harlem, and points slightly further uptown! It was a brief-but-worthwhile time in my own life; it was just too darn expensive in the city! The new boss there, since I left, Cardinal Dolan, was a year behind my priestly brother, in Rome. (His class of ’75 has produced ten bishops and three cardinals, I believe!?!)


  31. By the way, I came across this comment, in a thread at IMDb, which has left me a bit confused myself:


    Well, I finally sat down and watched LITTLE NOISES. For those of you who haven’t heard of it, it is a low budget, 77 minute movie from 1991 that looks like it went straight to video, although there may have been a limited release.

    It is a very depressing drama, set mostly in Hoboken, NJ, and stars Crispin Glover, Tatum O’Neal, John C.McGinley (of the NBC TV show “Scrubs”) and others. The film concerns a penniless, 27 year old would-be novelist (Glover), who, out of desperation to not be a “loser”, tells a literary agent that he has written a series of poems, that in reality were given to him by a mute neighbor. The book is published and Glover becomes very successful, but then he feels guilty when he discovers that the true author is now homeless.

    As someone mentioned above, Caroline Farina is in the film for literally a minute, in two very brief scenes. She plays Glover’s cousin, who barges into his apartment looking for rent money that he owes. Her first scene is within the first five minutes of the movie, and the second is about a half hour later.

    She is TOTALLY unrecognizable as a blonde, and with a street-wise accent. Certainly not like the refined character that she was in METROPOLITAN. When I saw the movie at first, I thought that Farina was Tatum O’Neal’s character, a struggling playwright. Not so!

    The part is so small, no wonder she gave up acting !


    So, was she not the one scrubbing the sidewalk, outside of the restaurant, beside the derelict?!?


    • Yes, that is confusing. I watched the whole thing on YouTube. It is not a bad film, if you can get over Crispin Glover’s weird persona. The story is quite interesting, Tatum O’Neal is watchable, there are some enjoyable minor characters, and the presence of the late Rik Mayall lifts the film. (I also discovered the poetry of Hart Crane through the film).

      The trailer I have seen includes scenes at the fish shop, where I think Cousin Linny (played by CF) lives; but these scenes are not found in the YouTube version.

      I am pretty certain that CF is on screen for about 15 seconds scrubbing the ground outside the fish shop as the Glover character argues with his landlady aunt.

      It looks like her. Slender, brunette, fair skin, short hair.

      I think the film was shown at various film festivals and may have been cut as a result of the reception it got. Perhaps it was decided to focus the story more tightly on Glover’s character. CF did say in an interview that she had a scene with Glover, but I suspect it was cut. I would give a lot to see that footage, if it exists.

      The commenter at IMDb is probably wrong to see “Little Noises” as the final nail in the coffin of CF’s acting career. After all, she subsequently had a reasonable part in “The Age of Innocence”. I think she did OK in the latter film, but she was really just “social scenery”.

      I kind of wonder why Stillman did not do more with her in “Disco”. She is alluded to by the Kate Beckinsale character and is seen dancing (and, frankly, mugging a bit). Why not give her some lines? She is there with some of the old Sally Fowler Rat Pack. They could have been given a nice ensemble discussion.

      I may have to watch “Little Noises” on YouTube again, but I seriously doubt she is a “blonde”. I think she is the slender brunette scrubbing outside the fish shop.


      • There is a blonde who bursts into Glover’s room early in the film, but she is dropping off laundry, not demanding rent. Also she is apparently called “Dolores” and is played by Nina Siemaszko. It is also implied that they have been lovers. So, not “Cousin Linny” and not Carolyn Farina. About half an hour into the film, a woman does come to his room demanding rent, but that is his Aunt, an older woman, not Cousin Linny.

        If you go to 1 minute 40 seconds here, you will see the girl I take to be Carolyn Farina in the background.

      • Posted by Julian O'Dea on February 2, 2015 at 4:18 pm

        To clarify, I think she had three chances after her modest but real success in Metropolitan. The first was Little Noises. But her scenes were cut. Her second chance was The Age of Innocence. But her part was unflattering and it was a dull film. Her last chance was The Last Days of Disco. She looked OK but Whit Stillman neglected to give her any lines!

  32. Yes, she is the one; even at that distance, it looks just like her! By the way, I have not commented on this aspect earlier, but I, too, believe that Carolyn made the mistake of going under the knife; in the screening-party pictures from 2012, she looks decidedly unnatural. (In fact, when I sent a link to this page, a female friend of mine “of a certain age” asked me, in reply, what she was supposed to look for, and specifically whether Carolyn Farina had been to “Dr. Baker”– one of the most in-demand plastic surgeons on Park Avenue!)


    • Posted by Julian O'Dea on October 3, 2014 at 9:32 pm

      She looks very strange in “Damsels” itself. There is something odd about her face, a tautness.

      Some “work” on her face seems possible.

      Slender, fine-featured girls often age poorly facially.

      I doubt it was done by a top practitioner. CF does not seem to be a wealthy woman.

      I think her appearance in “Damsels” was a mistake in more than one sense.


      • I do not think that she had the tender ministrations of a Dr. Baker, either– both for the fiscal reason that you cite and because the result would have been much better! My woman friend was merely trying to figure out why I would have been sending her this link; she had not noticed that I had been commenting, and that I was the one who perhaps had discovered Carolyn Farina’s present whereabouts and occupation.

      • Posted by Julian O'Dea on October 3, 2014 at 9:41 pm

        Little Noises had some good actors. Rik Mayall, Nina S, Tatum O’N etc. Crispin Glover. It should have done better.

        I am bemused by that fish shop, The Happy Halibut. There seem to be a lot of people living above it!

        I specifically asked CF about this film when I wrote to her. I don’t expect a reply.

      • Yes, Elizabeth McGovern has had plastic surgery, I think, and she looks natural in her current roles. In any case, she has managed to keep her looks well for her age.

        So has my wife, and she is nearly 54 and has never had “work” done of course. A little bit of condition on a woman can be a good thing.

        Yes, I am pretty sure you did discover her current occupation. I tried Facebook, but never thought to look at LinkedIn, although I am on that.

  33. By the way, in re-reading the “Baltimore Sun” story on Carolyn Farina (9/12/90), I am struck by how thoughtful and well-spoken she is, especially for a supposedly blue-collar girl from Queens, as well as how down-to-earth and realistic she seems, despite her evincing both ambition and enthusiasm. I think that she passed on college because she had known, for years, that she wanted to be an actress; she wanted to study acting only, at that point, rather than waste her time, in the prime of her life, on other academic nonsense. (Four university degrees– and the bulk of a lifetime– later, I, for one, can but applaud her for that self-awareness!) When she noted, somewhere, that her brother was the brainy one, I think that she was merely admiring her big brother– a college-educated electrical engineer– rather than giving evidence of her own lack of intellect. Not being an academic, or intellectual by inclination, is hardly proof of mental dullness. If she has made any mindless public comments– about herself, acting, films or, even, the world at large– I have yet to come across any such quotes attributed to her. (I can think of many celebrities with supposedly stellar IQs who have publicly spouted jaw-dropping nonsense!)


    • Well, this gets tricky for me, and I am concerned at speculating. I have often said that one minute actually physically talking to someone will tell you more than hours of speculation based on hints from printed sources.

      I am not sure she comes across as that thoughtful. Charmingly naive would be my feeling.

      I wonder if the family were more lower-middle class than working class. Perhaps, like “Tom” in “Metropolitan”, they were in straitened circumstances because their father had left. The brother being able to become an engineer (he is currently working as a chiropracter, oddly enough) suggests that the family had some “smarts” about how to get on.

      As for her plans to be an actress. I don’t know. A lot of pretty girls dream of being actresses, and take lessons. Also, she did not do some of the practical things she could have done to further her career, outside one initial lucky “break” which led to a couple more roles. Why no TV work, for example? She doesn’t seem to have capitalised in the long run on her initial good fortune. I think she went to a casting call, Stillman liked her look, and by some miracle she could actually act. But she never built on that in a lasting way.

      I think she needed more smarts herself, or a good adviser; perhaps the right man.

      Yes, actors tend to say the dumbest things. Just cringeworthy. I would like to think that CF would be an exception. Perhaps being a bit more down-to-earth might make her more generally sensible. (I was amused by her saying she was not “going steady”, which strikes me as a rather unsophisticated expression. A more pretentious woman would have said “not currently in a relationship” or something like that. But maybe the interviewer put words in her mouth. From my own, limited, experience, media people like to “construct a narrative” and are certainly capable of subtly mocking their subjects.)

      She may have been merely being modest, but she did say her brother “got the brains in the family”. Also, planning to be an actress seems no more sensible to me than planning to be an astronaut.

      What was the opportunity cost of going to college? Her alternative employment was working at Macy’s, which I imagine is better than working at somewhere like The Happy Halibut, but not a great job really. It can’t have paid well. It is a good job for a girl who wants to get married young. But she never did that, for reasons which leave me flummoxed. Most women get married or effectively married.

      I agree that education is not the answer in itself. But education leaves one open to any opportunities that may come along. I certainly had my doubts for many years about the value of my own lengthy studies, but in the very long term (think when I was about 50!) they did pay off and I got my “dream job” for a few years.

      To use the “Black Swan” (Nassim Taleb) metaphor, one cannot know what, if any, “black swans” of good luck will appear in your life, but you can prepare a few good lakes for them to land on. Such “lakes” can include a good education. A pretty young girl with acting talent will generally lose out in the long run to a pretty young girl with acting talent and a college education. Even if she stays in the theatrical line. And these days, even to get married, an education will be an advantage in attracting a good husband (not as much as some people say, because men mostly select on youth and looks, but most men do want their wives to have some kind of useful training – my wife was a librarian).


  34. As she said in the article, from the time that she was a girl, she knew that she wanted to be an actress. Yes, the odds were very long; but that is what she wanted to be. What good would a B.A. have done her in advancing to her goal? It just would have left her four years older– “and deeper in debt,” as ‘Tennessee Ernie’ Ford once sang. Truman Capote– who had a very high IQ, regardless of whatever else one may say about him– knew that he wanted to be a writer; and he knew that college would not make him one, so he did not go. As far as I am concerned, forty years after starting college, and more than a quarter of a century after completing my third advanced degree– all “sensible” degrees, for getting professional jobs, and potentially making lots of money, at that!– I simply wasted the very best years of my own life, chasing paper and a chimera. I blame myself for that, just as I blame myself for the relationships that I have had. If I could do it over again, though, I would follow Truman Capote’s example– in that narrow realm of choice! It does not pay off, in the long run, to be untrue to your true self. I have no way of knowing how Carolyn Farina feels about the overall arc of her life, let alone about the personal choices that she herself deliberately made to help create that arc. I would be very surprised, though, if not having a B.A. in Performing Arts (or whatever) is among her greatest personal regrets. She achieved something in her mid-twenties that most professional actresses, with or without a degree, never have and never will achieve; and, it is something that will be there for all the world to see, until the world is no longer able or willing to appreciate films as an art form. I have no reason to believe that she would have been any happier, nor even any more successful, if only she had relocated to L.A. and played by Hollywood’s rules. My overly long life has taught me, to date, that happiness is a great motivation, but a very rare accomplishment. I sincerely hope that she has it– by which, of course, I mean the latter!


    • Yes, I see your point. Or rather, points. I shall have to think about it all some more.

      I am off to Confession now. I like to go before a longish trip, and my wife and I are going to Western Australia on a bus trip looking at the state’s famous wildflowers. I am not very interested, but the missus wants to go.

      I totally agree that she made that one film that will live forever, and I said that in my post. She achieved far more than most people ever do, and gave great happiness to many people. And the character she helped create was a positive one.

      Perhaps that is why she seems happy enough from what little one can tell.

      Yes, you can (as I also said above) do everything right and still not get the “breaks”. I did eventually get the breaks, and even had a run of extraordinary luck, very late in my career, but it came very late, and I had career disappointments earlier in my life.

      I also take your point about chasing a chimaera. I did a bit of that, chasing a career in scientific research that did not eventuate as I had hoped (I eventually discovered that applied science was my metier). And, in the process, I feel I missed some of my youth (science is a hard taskmistress). I think, rather sadly, that is why I seem to be going through a sort of “Second Adolescence”, watching old Eighties teen romances, because I never had a teen romance myself. There were various reasons for that (all-boys school, youthful illness) but another is studying science, which is certainly not conducive to such romantic things. And frankly, I was a very late developer emotionally.

      I think there is a great deal in your point about playing by your own rules, and as I said, she seems to have done that.

      I shall have to think about it some more.

      I would add though that life is long, and youthful accomplishments do fade. It is important to have things to take you into later life. And a good liberal education does that. I have finally been able, for example, to take up an old interest in poetry, and have found that my haiku (if not my other poems) are in demand by publishers. One needs as many “strings to one’s bow” as possible, and I don’t regret studying my science degrees, especially as I found them of intrinsic interest. In a sense, I did “follow my bliss” and resisted pressure to do more vocational degrees, such as law.


  35. Bon voyage, mon ami! 😊


    • Thanks, Dan. It has been fun chatting and I am happy for you to drop by on the blog in a week or so, if something else occurs to you.

      If you are on Facebook you could friend me.

      It is great to find someone else who share’s one’s enthusiasm.

      It was also great to find out a bit more from you about the actress whom we both admire.

      I had a faint hope that she would reply to my recent letter and contact me. I would have loved to have conducted an email interview with her, for example.

      In the event, it looks like I have just about run out of new material, and I doubt she will make any more films. I notice that Whit Stillman’s latest project has been “green-lit” by Amazon now.

      I did wonder if the “Maria” who left a brief comment on this post to tell me that CF never married might have actually been the woman herself.

      But now I am getting fanciful.


  36. […] “What happened to Carolyn Farina?” […]


  37. […] reason, I am not able, for technical reasons, to add the following reference I just discovered to my post on the career of actress Carolyn Farina. I have tried to make that post as definitive as possible, […]


  38. […] breasts are unusual. I discuss their possible effect on the career of 1990s actress Carolyn Farina here, inter alia. Another actress who was a bit unimpressive in this area was Sean Young (although I […]


  39. Posted by Julian O'Dea on January 7, 2015 at 4:10 am

    I would like to put this in the body of the above post, but it seems to have grown so big that WordPress won’t let me add to the post itself. So, since it is recent and relates to the question of what Miss Farina is currently doing, I will just put this here. It is a Tumblr comment:


    The Tumblr poster says this about himself, “My name is Henrri, I’m currently attending Hunter College. I’m a music major, and loving it. I’m a huge The Legend of Zelda fan, just in case anyone else is and would like to talk about it. Anything else you’d like to know? Then just talk to me. Thanks.”

    He writes: “I just found out my girlfriend is working with Carolyn Farina at the mall”.

    This was posted on 3 August 2014. So, maybe she has left the education field and is back working in retail?


  40. […] I would probably just add this note to my very comprehensive and popular post on the actress and her curious career, but I am unable to do for some technical reason (I suspect the post has simply grown too […]


  41. Posted by Julian O'Dea on February 24, 2015 at 10:29 am

    Metropolitan is included by Vanity Fair in its March 2015 issue in a list of the ten best films about Manhattan. Not bad for a fairly minor film:


    Some nice clips from the film are at the site.


  42. […] Here is a detailed discussion of her rather strangely truncated career. […]


  43. […] Carolyn Farina’s short career seems to puzzle a lot of people, and I have analysed it here. […]


  44. […] have dutifully added this review to my bibliography of my long post on the short career of the actress who played Audrey. With this […]


  45. Posted by Julian O'Dea on April 19, 2015 at 5:30 am

    This is interesting on the resurgence of “deb” balls among WASPs in New York, and the WASP class portrayed in “Metropolitan” in general:



  46. […] have written extensively about the actress Carolyn Farina and her role as “Audrey Rouget”. In the first movie in […]


  47. Posted by Julian O'Dea on May 17, 2015 at 8:37 am

    An article by an anthropologist on the women of the Upper East Side – Audrey’s “tribe”:



  48. […] Carolyn Farina, the leading lady in the 1990 film “Metropolitan”. […]


  49. […] have written a fairly comprehensive account of her strange career here. My analysis of what happened to her and her career is one of my popular posts […]


  50. Carolyn Farina’s best film by far, Metropolitan, is due to be re-released in August 2015:



  51. http://www.whitstillman.org/2015/07/25/metropolitan-playing-in-nyc-la-d-c/

    “Whit Stillman’s Metropolitan once played for 7 months in NYC and now it’s playing for 7 days to celebrate its 25th anniversary. Metropolitan will be playing in Manhattan, Los Angeles, and Washington D.C. in early August.


    Whit Stillman, 1990
    USA | Format: DCP | 98 minutes

    One-week exclusive run opens August 7 and closes August 13th

    Q&A Schedule:
    Friday, August 7th at 7:00pm – cast members Chris Eigeman, Dylan Hundley, Carolyn Farina, and Allison Rutledge-Parisi
    Saturday, 7:00pm – Whit Stillman and cast members Dylan Hundley, Carolyn Farina, and Allison Rutledge-Parisi
    Sunday, 7:00pm – Whit Stillman”

    It looks like Carolyn Farina will be one of the group of original actors answering questions. It would be good if this Q&A is filmed and made available eventually.


  52. Posted by DAVID ROSCISZEWSKI on August 7, 2015 at 9:04 pm

    There is an error in your article. You stated that Carolyn does not have any lines in the 1992 film LITTLE NOISES. I have watched it on VHS. She does not appear in the background, but has 2 brief scenes. She plays Crispin Glover’s cousin, who barges into his apartment twice looking for rent money. She does have dialogue, although it is minimal


  53. Posted by DAVID ROSCISZEWSKI on August 7, 2015 at 9:20 pm

    I take back my comment below, I just watched LITTLE NOISES on You Tube and the blonde is not her


    • Posted by Julian O'Dea on August 8, 2015 at 5:45 am

      No, the blonde is not her. We actually discussed this in the comments above. There is some confusion because there is this young blonde actress in scenes set in the living area above the fish shop (sometimes described as a wholesale fish shop but I think just a retail fish shop – which I must say does, however, seem to have a LOT of people living above it.)

      The blonde actress is fairly well known, and has an Eastern European surname which I will check later. I don’t think she is Crispin Glover’s film “cousin”. Rather, she is an ex-lover.

      I am really puzzled by Carolyn Farina’s role in this film. She appears in the credits, with her first name misspelt as Caroline, as “Cousin Linny”. She spoke in an interview of working with Glover in this film. I assumed they would have a scene together in the movie. But she only appears in the background in one brief scene outside the shop, in which she has her distinctive short dark hair, pale skin and thin figure. She reacts to the action, but says nothing.

      I wrote to Miss Farina once, partly to ask her about her role in Little Noises, but got no reply.


      • Posted by Julian O'Dea on August 8, 2015 at 5:47 am

        To quote my earlier comment above:

        “There is a blonde who bursts into Glover’s room early in the film, but she is dropping off laundry, not demanding rent. Also she is apparently called “Dolores” and is played by Nina Siemaszko. It is also implied that they have been lovers. So, not “Cousin Linny” and not Carolyn Farina. About half an hour into the film, a woman does come to his room demanding rent, but that is his Aunt, an older woman, not Cousin Linny.”

  54. Posted by Julian O'Dea on August 8, 2015 at 2:37 am

    A podcast discussion on Metropolitan:


    • Posted by Julian O'Dea on August 8, 2015 at 6:55 am

      Quite an interesting discussion. Stillman makes the point, as I understand him, that aspects of the Nick and Charlie characters in Metropolitan live on in their characters in the later Stillman film, Barcelona.

      There are only a few references to Carolyn Farina or her character in Metropolitan, Audrey Rouget.

      Stillman’s remarks here seem to imply that it was intended that “Charlie Black” would be the same character as “Professor Black” in “Whit Stillman’s Damsels in Distress”. Taylor Nichols, who plays both characters, gave his opinion, however, that Charlie would have ended up like the disappointed middle-aged WASP in the bar in Metropolitan, “Dick Edwards”.


  55. Posted by Julian O'Dea on August 9, 2015 at 1:38 am

    A story in Vogue for the 25th anniversary of the release of Metropolitan:


    “The biggest star, in Stillman’s mind, was Roger W. Kirby, who made a cameo appearance as a middle-aged WASP at a bar. Kirby wasn’t an actor, but he’d been a school chum of the New York City directors Oliver Stone and Lloyd Kaufman, and was almost famous around town. “So many people would say, ‘Oh, I know that guy! Our daughters go to school together!’ or ‘I see him at the gym!’ or ‘We go bicycling together!’” Stillman recalls. “Roger Kirby was the most recognizable star.”

    Many members of the Metropolitan cast disappeared from the screen soon after the movie, but, for others, it was the start of a sustained acting career. Isabel Gillies, who played Cynthia, hadn’t even thought of working as an actor before being cast.”

    Most cast members did not exactly “disappear” from acting after Metropolitan. Many had a few subsequent screen appearances, or remained in the film business. The leading man and leading lady, Ed Clements and Carolyn Farina, did not go on to great success. The most successful cast members were probably Isabel Gillies, although that was in a popular TV show, and Chris Eigeman, who continues to make films.


    • Posted by Julian O'Dea on August 9, 2015 at 1:58 am

      And another piece in Indiewire, which apparently involved interviews with some of the actors:


      “In the pre-internet days, an audition notice in Backstage magazine was industry standard and the notice for “Metropolitan” attracted hundreds of actors to the audition. Among them were the bulk of young actors who would make up the cast. “Chris Eigeman, Carolyn Farina and Allison Parisi were all among the first 50 people that showed up in the first audition and Taylor Nichols was in the second audition,” Stillman recalled.”

      Which supports my contention in the post above that Carolyn Farina was not “discovered at the perfume counter at Macy’s” (or some such story that tends to get repeated) but simply attended an audition.

      “Farina said she fell in love with the script, which involved sophisticated banter and references to Jane Austen and Charles Fourier. “I thought it was awesome. I loved it. I thought, what a great story, what interesting people, and they’re so smart,” she said. “As I was reading, I imagined all these beautiful places and beautiful costumes. It was such a sweet story, so innocent. It very much appealed to me. I was very nervous about doing it because I didn’t feel worthy.””

      “Farina said the young cast bonded easily, partially because they were all sleep-deprived and freezing. “It was a very special experience and I think that is why it comes through as special and charming because as we were doing it, it felt that way,” said Farina. “It was always filmed in the middle of the night. It felt like we were the only people up. Every time we filmed outside, it was always zero degrees, so we were always huddled together in some doorway or in somebody’s basement. There was a romance to it. I think that is what people feel when they see it.””

      Some interesting remarks from Carolyn Farina, who tends to keep a low profile but is obviously part of the 25th anniversary activities. Her comments are characteristically thoughtful, candid and slightly naive.


  56. […] have written a very comprehensive appreciation of the actress here, which attempts among other things to answer the question of what happened to her career. The […]


  57. Posted by Mark on August 10, 2015 at 12:50 am

    The cast – including Carolyn Farina with ample cleavage – after 25 years.



    • Posted by Julian O'Dea on August 10, 2015 at 1:13 am

      Thanks. What an interesting photograph!

      Carolyn Farina looks very good in that photo. Lovely skin, and as you say, ample cleavage.

      For a woman who was notoriously flat-chested when she played Audrey Rouget, she seems to have acquired some remarkable curves.


  58. Posted by Bonnie Picard on August 12, 2015 at 12:05 am

    Yes, lets speak of the “ample cleavage”. The photo in my latest edition of VF on page
    305 may appeal to some but not to me. My eye was immediately drawn to what I would call a “poor angle shot” taken by Jonathan Becker. It was not flattering at all. Carolyn is a lovely looking woman who was not photographed properly. She should not have approved this photo if she was indeed given the option.


    • Posted by Julian O'Dea on August 12, 2015 at 2:21 am

      Yes, indeed, Bonnie. I have covered this here at a recent post:


      I wrote, pardon the roughish language:

      “(You know, I tossed up whether to say this, but this photo has a phoney look about it, especially compared with the next one down. It is not just that they are all so well-dressed. I suspect that there has been some photoshopping or other manipulation of the image. And, sorry to be crude, but if those are Carolyn Farina’s boobs, it looks like she has either had breast enhancement or some help from photoshopping. Her naturally very modest endowment was a plot device in the movie itself. I know that she is bending over in a low cut dress, but come on! A further point is that – whether that is her real bosom or not – she looks really tacky. The photographer should not have let her look so vulgar compared with the other cast members. A woman is expected to put on some display in a cocktail party dress, but not to have her tits half out of her dress like a silly floosie. Farina is 51 years old, for Goodness’ sake.)”

      I could add that Carolyn Farina has always presented herself as, and she may well be, a nice, pleasant-looking and modest woman. This photo makes her look like a bar girl. The glass in her hand only adds to the unfortunate effect.


  59. […] hope to take this onboard, and then update my long post on Carolyn Farina’s […]


  60. […] A copy of a replacement post here: […]


  61. Posted by steve brew on February 19, 2016 at 7:39 pm

    One hour video interview with Carolyn and Whit at 25 Year anniversary in village by the Strand: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c82EyryP8DY


    • Posted by Julian O'Dea on February 19, 2016 at 11:47 pm

      Yes. I had seen that. I think CF does well in that interview, although I can’t escape a feeling that she is acting a bit.

      She looks good and I like her accent (which makes her appearance in Damsels in Distress seem even more of an aberration.)

      I had a screen crush on her. Such a singular woman.


  62. Posted by David Rosciszewski on August 25, 2016 at 3:49 pm

    The IMDB lists her in a new movie coming in 2017


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