Who is the daughter of the legendary Sir John Mills, and what has been her journey from childhood fame and family life to her current career
In the 1960s, Hayley Mills captivated audiences with her playful British personality and irresistible charm. According to Walt Disney, the young actress was the most remarkable discovery in the film industry in the past 25 years.
Hayley’s most notable role was in Parent Trap (1661), where she portrayed twin sisters who were separated and reunited at a summer camp, working together to reunite their parents. Additionally, she gained widespread recognition for her performance in Pollyanna as well.
At the age of mid-seventies, Hayley has achieved immense success in her career as an actress in film, television, and stage. However, she is best known for her roles in Disney productions during her childhood.
The unbelievable experiences I had as a child star
Reflecting on her experience as a child celebrity, does she ever regret not having a more typical upbringing?
According to Hayley, if the question was posed to her 20 years ago, her answer may have been affirmative. However, her personal experiences have made her perspective on the matter unique. As a child star, she had unbelievable experiences that felt magical to her. Making films was enjoyable for her, as it did not feel much different from the imaginary games she used to play. In front of a camera, she always felt at ease and secure, almost as if she were protected. Nervousness or self-consciousness were never emotions she experienced in such situations.
However, being well-known came with its own set of challenges. “It wasn’t always a smooth journey. Due to the differences in our lifestyles, I drifted apart from many of my peers. As a teenager, your friends hold a significant place in your life, but I didn’t have the typical teenage experience.
My family also had a difficult time adapting to the changes I was going through. It caused a shift in the dynamics of our family. While my father enjoyed having my mother accompany him on his work trips, and vice versa, it was not possible for her to do so as she had to chaperone me on film sets. Additionally, she struggled to find enough time to focus on her writing.
Regarding writing, Hayley has previously written her own memoir, “Forever Young,” which was inspired by her visit to Disney Studios in California before the pandemic. She shares, “That experience was the driving force. The recreation of Walt’s offices, exactly as they were when I first visited in the late 1950s, was a truly magical moment. It was like traveling back in time.
After being granted access to the archives, I discovered a wealth of information, including my own letters to Walt, as well as letters from my parents and internal memos. It was an incredible find. Excited, I shared my experience with my partner and two adult sons, who encouraged me to document it all. My eldest son, Crispian, assisted me in organizing the book, resulting in Forever Young.
What is the age of Hayley Mills?
Born on April 18, 1946, she is currently 76 years old.
What is Hayley Mills’ height?
Hayley stands at a height of 5 feet 3 inches (1.6 meters).
What is the origin of Hayley Mills?
In 1946, Hayley was born in Marylebone, London. Her parents were Sir John Mills, a famous film actor, and Mary Hayley Bell, a writer in the film industry. Her siblings include her older sister, actress Juliet Mills, and brother, screenwriter Jonathan Mills. Despite growing up on a 400-acre dairy farm, Hayley attended a boarding school.
In 1947, Hayley made her initial appearance on screen as a baby in her father’s movie So Well Remembered.
What led to Hayley Mills’ career as a child actor?
During the 1960s, Hayley was a well-known child actress, starring in six Disney films and appearing in numerous British film dramas.
One day, while visiting her father Sir John Mills, J. Lee Thompson, the director, discovered her and offered her a chance to start her film career. He was discussing a potential role as a police superintendent in his upcoming thriller, Tiger Bay.
After observing Hayley, who was twelve years old at the time, playing and performing in the garden, J. Lee Thompson was greatly impressed. As a result, he decided to change the child’s lead role from a boy to a girl and offered the role to Hayley without requiring an audition.
The movie Tiger Bay, which came out in 1959, received high praise from critics. Hayley was the recipient of the British Academy Award (BAFTA) for Most Promising Newcomer to Film and also won an accolade at the Berlin Film Festival.
Films featuring Hayley Mills
During the 1960s, Hayley was a well-known child actress who was primarily recognized for her performances in.
Hayley’s initial appearance in acting was remarkable. She portrayed Gillie, a young street urchin who observes the savage murder of a woman by a visiting sailor named Korchinsky. This achievement caught the attention of Disney and led to her discovery.
Hayley’s debut in the Disney movie Pollyanna features her as a young girl without parents, who brings happiness to the people she meets. Nevertheless, Aunt Polly (played by Jane Wyman) is too preoccupied with maintaining appearances, being involved in politics, and adhering to social norms to recognize her niece’s extraordinary nature.
The Parent Trap franchise from 1961
Hayley’s most famous movie, Parent Trap, features her in dual roles as Susan and Sharon, identical twins separated at birth. While both are attending a summer camp, they discover their true relationship and decide to exchange identities to reunite with their other parent. In the end, the twin’s scheme is successful and they can reconcile their divorced parents.
The Magic of Summer (1963)
The Disney musical centers around Margaret Carey, portrayed by Dorothy McGuire, a widow from Boston who relocates to Maine with her three children. The film features Hayley, Burl Ives, Deborah Walley, James Stacy, and James Mathers in a musical performance.
The Story of The Moon-Spinners (1964)
The movie takes place on the Isle of Crete, where a youthful English traveler, portrayed by Hayley, is pitted against a cunning thief of jewels, played by Eli Wallach. Through misinterpreted identities and dangerous getaways, the young traveler is led to confront a peculiar millionaire, portrayed by Pola Negri, who has a strong infatuation for valuable gems and keeps pet cheetahs.
• In 1961, Mary Hayley Bell wrote Whistle Down the Wind, featuring performances by Alan Bates and Bernard Lee (known for his role as M in the James Bond films).
• In 1964, Deborah Kerr and her father John Mills co-starred in The Chalk Garden, a mystery drama.
• “The Truth About Spring” from 1964 is a comedic film that stars John Mills and Hayley Mills as a father and daughter duo.
The Career of Hayley After Disney
At the age of 18, Hayley departed from Disney. She recalls the challenges of transitioning from a child actor to an adult. Initially, acting came naturally to her, but she began to doubt her abilities because it came so easily. However, theatre became her lifeline as it allowed her to continuously learn from various individuals and regain her confidence.
After 1966, Hayley’s fame at the cinema began to decline. Despite appearing in British films until 1975, her career after her Disney debut did not reach the same level of acclaim or financial success. However, she did venture into the realm of theater, making her first appearance on stage in London’s West End in 1966 as Peter Pan. She continued to make regular appearances on stage in the United Kingdom during the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s.
Who is the Husband of Hayley Mills?
During the production of The Family Way in 1966, Hayley Mills, who was 20 years old at the time, crossed paths with 53-year-old director Roy Boulting. Five years later, they tied the knot and purchased a flat in Chelsea, London, and Cobstone Windmill in Ibstone, Buckinghamshire.
According to Hayley, she did not view their age gap as an issue at the time. In her A&E documentary, she reflects, “The fact that he was significantly older may have been a factor in the attraction, but it was not a conscious thought.” She goes on to say, “Having spent a significant amount of time with individuals much older than myself (on movie sets, for example), it did not seem strange or unusual to me.
In 1973, they welcomed a son named Crispian Mills. However, their marriage ended in divorce four years later in 1977.
In 1975, Hayley began a romantic involvement with Leigh Lawson, an English actor, director, and writer of film and stage. During their time together, they welcomed a second son named Jason Lawson. However, the two ended their relationship in 1984.
Hayley is currently in a relationship with Firdous Bamji, an Indian-born actor and writer. They have been together since 1997, with a significant age difference of 20 years between them.
Firdous Bamji, an Indian-born actor, is my partner of many years. We first crossed paths while on tour in the United States, playing the lead roles in The King and I. Our relationship began as acquaintances but eventually evolved into something more – wouldn’t you agree that it was the best way?
Who are the offspring of Hayley Mills?
Crispian Mills, the eldest child of the author, was born in Hammersmith, London on 18 January 1973. He is recognized as an English musician, songwriter, guitarist, and filmmaker, however, he is most famous for being the lead singer of the indie rock band Kula Shaker, known for their psychedelic sound.
Jason Lawson, who was born in 1976, is the second son of Leigh Lawson and her.
With five grandchildren, Hayley takes pride in her role as a grandmother. She admits to spoiling them, but she sees it as her privilege. She adores them and always gives them her undivided attention when they are together. She loves to treat them with sweets and ice cream, but eventually returns them to their parents.
Around 12 years ago, I returned to the UK from the US as my grandchildren began to arrive. Although I enjoyed my time living in New York while still having a residence in London, the frequent back-and-forth trips across the Atlantic were becoming too costly. Therefore, we decided to make London our central location.
The total value of Hayley Mills’ assets
Based on The Richest, it is estimated that Hayley’s net worth is $5 million.
What is the current activity of Hayley Mills?
Hayley has been actively pursuing her acting career in both theater and on television in the past few years. She was a lead actress on the popular British show, Wild at Heart, for six years (2007-2012). However, in 2008, she had to undergo surgery for breast cancer and due to not being able to finish chemotherapy, she has been in remission since 2012.
At the age of seventy, Hayley is continuing to pursue her acting career on television, appearing in shows like Midsomer Murders (2014) and films like Foster (2011) where she starred alongside Toni Collette and Ioan Gruffud.
BBC’s Pitching In (2019) welcomed Hayley Mills back to our screens after a few years of absence, where she was joined by Larry Lamb.
I thoroughly enjoy working in this manner because the tasks are not excessively time-consuming and do not require a significant amount of lines to memorize. I had a much easier time learning lines at the age of 12 compared to my current abilities.
A variety of her films can be found on Disney+.
The Spiritual Journey of Hayley Mills
Several years in the past, during a challenging period in my emotional state, a close acquaintance introduced me to the Hare Krishna movement. While I did not fully embrace the faith, its lessons deeply resonated with me and opened my mind to a spiritual consciousness. The teachings emphasized the importance of not being driven by material desires, which had a profound impact on my perspective.
Every day, I strive to avoid being judgemental and instead, aim to be as compassionate as I can be. I also make an effort to comprehend the intentions of others. This experience has also helped me become more grounded and mindful of living in the present.
A significant change in my lifestyle was my choice to adopt a vegetarian diet, driven by my empathy towards animals and recognizing their consciousness as equal to humans. I believe that all forms of life are valuable and deserve reverence, not just human life. Apart from this ethical standpoint, a plant-based diet is also beneficial for one’s health and the environment. Currently, I am on a UK tour for a stage production of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, where I am joined by Rula Lenska and Paul Nicholas. Admittedly, there may be instances where I consume fish or chicken due to the unavailability of vegetarian options. But like anyone else, I need sustenance to function at my best.
Spiritualism played a significant role in helping me come to grips with my childhood experiences. I was able to fully accept and embrace them without fear or guilt, viewing them as a valuable gift that carried a sense of responsibility that I had previously avoided. Throughout my life, I had grappled with my early achievements, but this newfound outlook allowed me to understand that my good fortune was not a negative cosmic error, but rather a result of my karma.
I have made a conscious decision to not let regrets control my life. I have been fortunate in numerous aspects. I am extremely appreciative of the amazing blessings that have entered my life, such as my children, grandchildren, health, long-time partner, and successful career. Dwelling in bitterness is not a desirable attitude.