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Joan Henry Born 8 April 1914(1914-04-08) Belgravia, London Died 2000 (age 85) Nationality English Notable work(s) Who Lie in Gaol Yield to the Night Look on Tempests Spouse(s) Donald Standage (1938 – approx. 1950) J. Lee Thompson (1958 – late 1960s) Children One daughter (with Standage) Joan Constance Anne Henry (1914–2000) was an English novelist, playwright and screenwriter. A former débutante from an illustrious family, she was convicted of passing fraudulent cheques in 1951 and her best-known works were based on her experiences in prison. She wrote the semi-autobiographical Who Lie In Gaol, filmed as The Weak and the Wicked, and the novel Yield to the Night, the basis for the film starring Diana Dors. Contents 1 Early years 2 Career 3 References 4 External links // Early years Joan Henry was born on 8 April 1914 in Belgravia, London. One of twin sisters, she was descended from two Prime Ministers, Robert Peel and John Russell. Her father left when she was still young; her mother was unable to cope and sent her daughters to be raised by grandparents in Ireland. After returning to England and finishing her education, she made her society début in 1932.[1] Her twin sister died at the age of 21.[2] In 1938 she married army officer Donald Standage; the couple had one daughter. The marriage broke down in the late 1940s and they were divorced by 1950. After getting into debt through gambling, Henry accepted a cheque from a friend as a loan. The cheque was forged, and in 1951 she was convicted at the Old Bailey for passing the cheque and sentenced to 12 months imprisonment. She served eight months, initially at Holloway prison and later Askham Grange open prison.[1] Career Who Lie in Gaol was published in 1952 (the title was taken from a line in Oscar Wilde's The Ballad of Reading Gaol).[2] Based on Henry's experiences in prison, it contained accounts of brutal treatment and neglect. It became a bestseller and was filmed as The Weak and the Wicked, directed by J. Lee Thompson with Glynis Johns playing a character based on Henry.[1] Yield to the Night (the title was taken from Book VII of the Iliad),[1] a novel following a woman awaiting execution, was published in 1954.[3] It was filmed in 1956 with Diana Dors in the lead role.[1] Henry co-wrote the script, which was nominated for a BAFTA award for Best British Screenplay.[4] The film was again directed by Lee Thompson, who Henry married in 1958.[1] In 1960 Henry's play Look on Tempests opened at the Comedy Theatre in London's West End. It continued Henry's focus on the justice system, depicting the effect on the upper middle class family of a man accused of gross indecency.[5], and became the first play dealing explicitly with the subject of homosexuality to be approved for performance by the Lord Chamberlain who had lifted a ban on the subject the previous year.[6] Henry also wrote two television plays, Rough Justice in 1962 and Person to Person in 1967. She and Lee Thompson were divorced in the late 1960s.[1] References ^ a b c d e f g "Joan Henry". The Daily Telegraph. 1 January 2001. Retrieved 10 October 2010.  ^ a b Scheffler, Judith A. (2002). Wall tappings: an international anthology of women's prison writings, 200 to the present (2nd ed.). Feminist Press at the City University of New York. ISBN 1-55861-272-6.  ^ Henry, Joan (1954). Yield to the Night. London: Gollancz. OCLC 632438177.  ^ "Film Nominations 1956". BAFTA. Retrieved 11 October 2010.  ^ De Jongh, Nicholas (1992). Not in front of the audience: homosexuality on stage. Routledge. ISBN 0-415-03362-4.  ^ Pouteau, Jacques (25 March 1960). "London Sees Play of Type Formerly Banned". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 30 October 2010.  External links Joan Henry at the Internet Movie Database