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She turned down £1 million for three days' work on a make-up advert because she thought it was frivolous, and used to rail against directors' attempts to get her to take her clothes off. There are going to be nude scenes in this film, aren't there? In 1991, the year she met D'Onofrio, she sobbed in the street after attending a screening of Shattered (in which she starred alongside Bob Hoskins and Tom Berenger), feeling that her humiliation had reached its nadir.
A Spitting Image sketch from around that time featured Scacchi auditioning for Richard Attenborough. 'There I was,' she said later, 'in the missionary position, with the fourth famous actor in six months on top of me - Harrison Ford, Vincent D'Onofrio, Jimmy Smits, now Tom Berenger - and I'm thinking, "I just can't do this any more."'That period has long gone.
(Years later she saw a healer who said, 'Oh, my poor darling, I think he must have killed you in another life.') She has called it a time of 'total wretchedness, like a constant groan. She barely worked, though they should have been her golden years as an actress; she had too little confidence to go to London to parties.
Occasionally, at breaking point, she would call her brother and tell him he had to come round before she threw the baby from the window.
Although there was a lot of tutting when they got together, unions between first cousins are perfectly legal.
She has also just made two other films: Miss Austen Regrets for the BBC and Shoot on Sight with the director Jag Mundhra. 'Because I've had the same commitment to my work and good material since I was a child,' she says in her direct, straightforward way. 'He was Adam to my Eve - it was as if we shared the same skin,' she has said of their romance. He was insecure, with a 'titanic ego just like my father, and he did to me exactly what my father did to my mother'. He begged and wept until she returned; but, in the end, he was the one who left her, six months after their daughter was born. Now back - and as beguiling as ever - is she any happier? But just watching herself on screen was enough to make the actress Greta Scacchi physically sick.Then he would unexpectedly leave, breaking all his promises to the contrary.Pamela was quite different: English, very disciplined, a dancer turned dance teacher.