Jamie Foreman: Gangsters, Guns & Me
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Jamie Foreman is one of Britain's most iconic actors. He is also the son of Britain's most notorious gangster, Freddie Foreman. Jamie's life has been anything but ordinary. Right from the start, his world was one of contrast and contradiction: he grew up surrounded by London's criminal elite, living by their code of honour and respect, yet he himself was brought up to be a 'straight goer'.
The backdrop of his home life was to differ greatly from his time at school as, at seven years old, Jamie found himself in the unlikely surroundings of a boarding school. The happiness of his family and school life was snatched from Jamie when his father was sentenced to ten years in prison for his involvement in the killing of Jack 'The Hat' McVitie. The subsequent years saw Jamie without the father he adored and the whole family was put under enormous strain.
At 14, Jamie decided that his passion was for acting and, having been encouraged by Barbara Windsor, he discovered yet another new environment at the Italia Conti Stage School. Jamie thrived in the acting world and was soon enjoying success on both stage and screen. By the time of his dad's release from prison, Jamie had carved a 'straight' career for himself - but after years apart, there was plenty of lost time to make up for. Soon, he was dividing his time between acting and assisting with Freddie's 'business.' Before long, though, life took a surprising turn when a drug deal his father was heavily involved in went tragically wrong and he was forced to go on the run to America with his dad, which marked the start of a whole new adventure.
A truly fascinating story of a unique life. From being babysat by the Kray Twins to his life-changing meeting with Lawrence Olivier. Jamie's is a compelling tale of a boy becoming a man, of a father lost and found (and nearly lost again), and of the adventure, violence and tenderness that forged an unbreakable father-son relationship.
Little did he know it but he was under constant surveillance. Surprise, surprise, he and his crew got nicked. Dad’s firm were all questioned about Ginger’s murder, but what they didn’t know was that Evans had already snitched, naming Dad, Alfie, Jerry Callaghan and Ronnie as culprits. But the police hadn’t enough evidence to arrest them. For one thing, they didn’t have a body. But they all knew that Evans was scared. After all, he knew Freddie Foreman still wanted him dead. His fear sent him
shaken, terrified coppers. It was an incredible scene – my dad’s firm were doing things you just don’t do to the police. I had never seen anything like it. They never took a backward step with anyone. What a firm! Ten months, I thought. Ten months until my father defends himself in the trial of a lifetime. When we’d thought he was going to come out early, ten months seemed nothing. Now, with the worry that he might be given a life sentence, it felt like an age away. There would be dark days
centre. Watching Dad and Ron together was incredible. They’d fought off many challengers over the years and had their technique down to a fine art. There was a kind of telepathy between them – Dad attacking, Ron minding his back. It was carnage, like a saloon brawl in a cowboy movie. Chairs flew through the air and were being used as weapons. I must admit I used one myself to make sure that, once down, nobody got up. The finale came when my father pinned another big lump against a wall and
thing I’d learned from Dad was this: when a policeman is pointing a gun at you, he’s always nervous, often more nervous than you are. And nerves and guns aren’t a good combination – it only takes the smallest slip of the finger for a pistol to go off. Dad had had many a police gun pulled on him in the past, and he’d always warned me that, should it ever happen to me, I should do everything I could to keep the situation calm. ‘Don’t move quickly,’ he said, ‘and always try to talk them down. Keep
prison for Dad too. The idea of abandoning my father brought back all the sickening, horrible feelings from Leicester jail all those years ago. We’d come so far since those dark days – we were together, free and strong – but sometimes those buried emotions came back. I’d lost my father and found him again and I never wanted to let him go. I thought that leaving him would be disloyal in some way. I told Dad how I felt. He understood. He felt the same way as me – he never wanted to let me go again