TV Week: “The Littlest Sullivan” The Sullivans 5th January 1980

TV Week
5th January 1980

Has been crying herself to sleep with worry…

LITTLE Lisa Crittenden the youngest star of The Sullivans, has just gone through the toughest year of her life.

Successfully completing her final year of high school combined with starring in a national television series has made her life more hectic than a rugby game.

When TV Week spoke to Lisa she was in her final week of study before the Higher School Certificate exams.

After studying hard all week, her small, fold away desk was piled high with books and wads of notes.

Lisa was agitated.

She said she felt there was a tremendous amount of pressure on her to do well in her exams.

“I cried myself to sleep last night,” She confided in a tone that suggested she didn’t believe it herself.

Yet it happened. The pressure to pass her exams had caused a boilover.

“A lot of people say I’m a superwoman and that I can do all the work that is placed in front of me,” the 17 year-old said.

“But that’s not true.

“I mean I’ve always done the work and I’ve always done well at school, but this year is different.

“HSC was something I had as an aim. I would have been very disappointed if I hadn’t done it.

“I’ve coped resonantly well – at least I didn’t throw it in. There were times when I wanted to chuck it in but I didn’t – I stuck it out.”

There were some trying times.

Once Lisa started filming at 11:00am and didn’t finish until 11 that night.

“I get a lot of enjoying out of shooting but it was 1.30am before I got to bed. And when you have to be up at 7.00 to go t school – plus the fact that there is all that homework to do – it’s not easy.”

Lisa said that there was one thing that kept her doing her homework – a “terrible conscience”.

If she spends three days filming and only two at school, she feels compelled to finish all the homework she missed.

The final weeks before her exams were especially frantic.

“Crawfords were great about letting me study. They were going to give me eight weeks break from filming so I could study and sit for the exams.

“But the production workers strike pushed everything forward… I finished filming only one week before my first exams.”

Her workload also plays havoc with her relaxation time.

“I didn’t have much of a social life last year with all my study, and this year was an absolute nil.”

One of her biggest disappointments was missing a farewell party for Sullivans co-star Richard Morgan. “I had to study,” she said.

Last year Lisa achieved a remarkable straight A report. But she didn’t have the extra responsibility of an acting role.

This year, to keep up with her studies, Lisa took her text books on locations and studied on the set.

In the critical months before the exams Lisa learned her lines during rehearsal. She couldn’t spare the time to study scripts at home.

After the HSC exams Lisa plans to “live it up a bit.”

“I want to go out more and see a few movies. I’ve always been a great movie buff… and I’d really like to read a decent book.

Lisa recently signed a contract guaranteeing her a job with The Sullivans for the next six months. After that she doesn’t know what she will do.

Richard Morrow

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