Lia Beldam reflects on her role as Room 237’s guest in Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining”

Lia BeldamYou may not know the name Lia Beldam, but you will know her by her work. She played a very important scene in Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining” as the woman in Room 237 and that seduces Jack Nicholson in the film. After the film, Lia never got into acting full-time as she was already modeling. Media Mikes had a chance to track down Lia and ask her a few questions about the film and reflecting on her role.

Mike Gencarelli: Let’s start at the beginning, how did you get involved with “The Shining”?
Lia Beldam: I was a model. My agency were asked to send some people for the ballroom scene a movie called “The Shining”. So I went along thinking I would be in this ballroom scene. Prior to that, I had done a lot of nude shots for commercials and someone from the film saw them and said that they could cast me for another role in the film. I said “Sure”, since I didn’t have a clue what the film was about anyway. I went in to audition and didn’t even have to undress, so that was easy. And that is how I got the job.

MG: Did you know the extend of your scene before signing on?
LB: I knew it was a nude scene and that I wasn’t going to be in the ballroom scene. I had no idea what “The Shining” was about. They just told me it was be a nude scene and I was perfectly fine with that.

MG: How was it working with Jack Nicholson in your scene?
LB: He was very nice. As you know, I am not an actress. My main job was and still is modeling. I told him that he needed to help me. He said he would sit with me and discuss the shot. He was just very nice and absolutely charming.

MG: Tell us what it was like being directed by the legendary Stanley Kubrick?Lia Beldam
LB: It was just another job for me to be honest. When I did my modeling, there was always an art director on set telling me what to do. It was just another job. I wasn’t really falling over in amazement being in the same room. I wasn’t familiar with how famous he way. But still he was very pleasant to work with.

MG: Did you have any interactions with Billie Gibson aka “Old Woman in Bath”?
LB: Yes I did. I believe she was about 74 at the time when we shot and was a friend of the Kubrick’s. She wasn’t an actress either. She just did it as a favor to them. She was very nice.

MG: How long did it take to shoot the one scene?
LB: It was ridiculous. I tell you what Mike, it took a whole week. Very often though, it was long waits for me sitting my dressing room. They would change something in the set whether it was the carpet or something else. It wasn’t the actually shoot itself although he did do many many different takes. I didn’t mind the many takes though since I was enjoying kissing Jack Nicholson, that was sure [laughs]. I was paid for a whole week so I was there for a whole week. It was just wonderful.

MG: When you completed this role, did you ever think that we would be still talking about it over 30 years later?
LB: Not particularly no [laughs]. My son recently put up a picture up for me online with me and Jack Nicholson and since then I have been contacted quite a bit. But I really enjoy it and it has been great fun.

Lia Beldam

MG: After this film and not being an actress, why didn’t you pursue more acting gigs?
LB: I just pursued modeling. I had some very good jobs and I just loved it. I did a few very little bits in films but nothing special at all after “The Shining”. Models are always asked to go on films to bulk out scenes. It would have been lovely if someone had asked me to do more films but they didn’t. So I just kept on working as a model and was completely happy.

MG: Have you ever considered attending horror conventions to meet fans?
LB: Never. I didn’t even know what a convention was until recently. I have never be asked to do anything like that. I live in a very tiny village in the middle of nowhere in England and I have never thought about those things. Sounds like fun though!

18 Replies to “Lia Beldam reflects on her role as Room 237’s guest in Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining””

  1. I have to say Lia that the shining is in my top 3 movies of all time. Thank you for your contribution you are truly beautiful then and now. Please get out and meet some of your fans at one of those conventions. Who knows maybe someday it will be me.

  2. You sould have become an actress Lia, you are a beautiful lady , and I know you would have made it big,

  3. Such a beauty now and then. I probably watched that movie 15 times in a row and 25 times in one wknd during a marathon of ir. Being 11 mom my obviously felt I was obsessed with the movie which I was. Top movie of all time! Fave moments was watching it with my Mom eating popcorn and covering my eyes during the nude scene. Hahaha

  4. “The Shining” was released in 1980 and this article by Mike Gencarelli was written in 2013. Three comments, one from December 2015 and two from 2016, are late to the article; amazing that there are so few and so late. Here’s another amazing fact. I just watched “The Shining” on DVD on July 4th, 2016! I’m 66 years of age and had never seen the movie until today; my career in the Marine Corps was a busy one and missed much during those years; no regrets. I had heard of the movie and the non-word, REDRUM and its meaning but never knew its source. Began researching the actors and crew this evening and, “Voilà!” here I am. Enjoyed the interview and the background on how Lia Beldam got the part and her career as a whole. Shame she didn’t do more in film. She’s a lovely lady. Kudos to Mr. Gencarelli.

  5. Thank you Lia for the incredibly honest and frank response.
    I’m sick and tired of all this bullshit that you see with actors and actresses in interviews these days.

  6. The power of this movie!! People will find this article for years to come. I’m home sick from work and came across The Shinning on Netflix and was watching. I saw the movie as a kid with my dad and have watched it a dozen times throughout the years. Kubrick knew how to make a movie that would last for generations. Lia’s scene was one to remember. Not because she was nude. But the music, the mood of the scene. Jack’s acting. Not knowing what was going to happen the first time you watch it.
    Thanks for the interview

  7. I’ve been meaning to watch the movie for ten years now but never got around to it. I finally watched it now on Netflix. Lia was stunningly beautiful then. She looks even more beautiful now! Too bad we don’t get to watch her onscreen. Thanks for the interview.

  8. I watched that scene over and over again last night, from where Lia pulls back the shower curtain to just before she turns into the old hag. She has always intrigued me in that role, and I’m delighted to find this informative piece on her.

    I’d actually been wondering how many takes she might’ve had to do. I love the way she uses her eyes when she’s close to Jack; how she steadily looks him in the eye, then glances down as she touches him, then more eye contact. It’d be interesting to know whether that was her own inspiration or Kubrick’s direction.

  9. Yep that’s my name! 😉 LOL
    I have watched The Shining since 1980 and always LOVE it!! It is a masterpiece! The sad thing is the actors and actresses are all dieing. 🙁 I think it is about 6 now. Shelley Duvall may be suffering from the post after effects – who knows? ‘Ol Lloyd the bartender is still with us at about 90! The Shining will live on for many generations! I wonder if Lia ever did any fan conventions yet it is now January 2018 with this entry. 🙂

  10. Excellent movie obviously, and the bathtub / bathroom sceen is my favorite, obviously. I will never forget the night I went to watch THE SHINING. It was the summer of 1980, I was 14 and rode my bicycle to the movie house late in the day, the summer, mid June, the sun at 7:30p was still bright but low. After watching THE SHINING the sun was down, it’s dark and all I have was a bicycle light powered from a little generator that was on my front bicycle tire. I remember all the shadows it made as I rode and went around corners, how it went dim if I slowed down. That was the most terrifying bicycle ride I ever had, 1 1/2 miles of fear in Gunnison Colorado at 7700 feet elevation . I made it home in record time on that red sting ray bicycle, that cold and humid summer night.

  11. This scene still freaks me out. I wonder how many people have intimacy issues as a result – lol. I feel it’s a very important part of the story. Lia, you were beautiful then and still are today. I’m glad they chose you for that scene. Must have been fun to be a part of.

  12. I just watched the movie in 4K at the theater. It took me back to the most beautiful woman’s figure I still have ever seen. My first thought afterward was what you thought of at that time, so thank you for giving an interview. You look lovely as ever, have fun if you make it to conventions! The fans would love to see you, especially a big anniversary like next year.

  13. Thank you for acting In the Shining. Its one of my favorite movies of all time. Jack Nicholson is one of my favorite actors. I appreciate the scene you did. It was so spooky and creeped me out. Your so beautiful . I hope you do conventions some time

  14. I can imagine what a number it must have been on Billie Gibson’s psyche”Hey We just cast a young model for a nude bathtub scene and now we need an ugly old creepy-looking hag to play her old undead self.Are you interested?”

  15. I’m so sad to report that my dear friend Lia died on Monday 23rd August after a short illness. RIP beautiful Lia.

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