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CRAIG BROWN: Feel lucky, punk? Then try a Dirty Harry wash cycle

Heart-throb George Clooney has revealed that during lockdown he has been doing seven loads of laundry a day, as well as a variety of household tasks, including sewing, cooking and mopping the floor.

But Clooney isn’t the first silver-screen hero to be a master of domestic chores…

Heart-throb George Clooney has revealed that during lockdown he has been doing seven loads of laundry a day, but there are six things you may not know about Hollywood’s housework heroes

1. 

Hollywood cowboy John Wayne was a dab hand at needlework. In intervals during the filming of The Searchers (1956), he knitted himself a medium-length woollen scarf with alternating cerise and lime stripes.

‘Fair to say, that was one of the finest scarves ever worn by a man,’ he recalled in his best-selling memoir Casting Off, ‘and it kept me mighty warm whenever my sitting room was assailed by a draught.’

Hollywood cowboy John Wayne was a dab hand at needlework, proudly declaring a scarf he created as 'one of the finest scarves ever worn by a man'

Hollywood cowboy John Wayne was a dab hand at needlework, proudly declaring a scarf he created as ‘one of the finest scarves ever worn by a man’

Wayne perfected his technique on the set of The Green Berets, knitting himself his own green beret in shades of turquoise, teal and aquamarine. 

‘The trick is to bunch your stitches up close to the tip of your left needle for easy knitting and flow,’ he explained. 

‘That way, you leave your right hand free to draw your gun.’

2. 

Another Hollywood hero who always did his own housework was Clint Eastwood. 

He now insists that his most famous character, Dirty Harry, was wrongly named, as he took great care with his personal appearance and kept himself clean and tidy.

‘One day, blood might be spattered all over his shirt, but the next day, after a prolonged wash in warm, soapy water, that shirt would come up sparkling,’ Eastwood revealed in his regular column in Good Housekeeping magazine.

Dirty Harry was also highly skilled with an iron.

Clint Eastwood's most famous speech in Dirty Harry was altered in the cutting room. The original version went: 'I know what you're thinking: 'Did he wash six shirts or only five?'

Clint Eastwood’s most famous speech in Dirty Harry was altered in the cutting room. The original version went: ‘I know what you’re thinking: ‘Did he wash six shirts or only five?’

‘We had a real fine ironing scene in that movie. You saw Harry Callahan giving ten shirts all the care and attention they needed, so they looked like new. You see, he had the skills.’

In a scene — later cut — after his sidekick, Chico Gonzalez, has been shot, Harry tries to comfort him.

‘There’s something I’ve always wanted to tell you, Chico, and that’s the best way to handle delicate fabrics. Inside out, and on a low temperature setting. It’s the only way, Chico — it’s the only way.’ 

With that, Chico smiles appreciatively and passes out.

3. 

Eastwood’s most famous speech in Dirty Harry was altered in the cutting room. 

The original version went: ‘I know what you’re thinking: ‘Did he wash six shirts or only five?’ 

Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement, I’ve kinda lost track myself. But being that this is a Bosch .44 Magnum Front Loader, the most powerful washing machine in the world, and would clean 50 or more garments in a single cycle, you’ve got to ask yourself one question: ‘Do I feel lucky?’ Well, do ya, punk?’

4. 

One of Hollywood’s most house-proud actors is tough-guy actor Sylvester Stallone.

As well as being a skilled home baker, he is the enthusiastic owner of a complete collection of Mary Berry’s cookery books. 

He recently made chicken vol-au-vents for a dinner party of 12, and next week plans to tackle Berry’s recipe for ballotine of duck liver with damson and pistachio.

As Rocky once said: 'It ain't how hard you knit; it's about how hard you can knit, and keep moving forward... you gotta be willing to take the knit'

As Rocky once said: ‘It ain’t how hard you knit; it’s about how hard you can knit, and keep moving forward… you gotta be willing to take the knit’

He also does all his own vacuuming. ‘A good vacuum cleaner is frankly worth its weight in gold,’ he says. His favourite attachments are the upholstery brush — ‘perfect for cleaning furniture, curtains and blinds’ — and the soft dusting brush, which is ‘ideal for delicate surfaces such as the tops of books and picture frames’.

5.

For his renowned series of Rocky movies, Stallone famously sewed all his own boxing shorts. The 74-year-old actor reportedly spends anything up to six hours a day knitting jerseys, cardigans and bobble hats.

He reckons a world champion knitter needs one quality above all: the ability to keep going, no matter what. ‘It ain’t how hard you knit; it’s about how hard you can knit, and keep moving forward… you gotta be willing to take the knit.’

6. 

Tough guy wrestler Hulk Hogan, Stallone’s co-star in Rocky III: The Purl Stitch, spends at least three mornings a week doing heavy dusting.

After cleaning the house, Hulk Hogan makes sure to keep duster in top shape. 'When I shake that duster,' he boasts, 'the whole world shakes'

After cleaning the house, Hulk Hogan makes sure to keep duster in top shape. ‘When I shake that duster,’ he boasts, ‘the whole world shakes’

For the more fragile items, Hulk recommends ostrich feather dusters: ‘Their delicate nature makes them ideal for dusting all my most precious glass and china.’

Following a prolonged dusting session, he takes extra special care to give his duster a thoroughly good shake-out. ‘When I shake that duster,’ he boasts, ‘the whole world shakes.’


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