Quadrophenia cast threatened strike on behalf of Trevor Laird after director allegedly said there could not be any interracial sex scenes

Ellie Harrison
Rex Features

Trevor Laird has claimed that Franc Roddam, the director of the 1979 film Quadrophenia, cut him from a scene because he did not think he could show sex between “a black man and white women”.

The cast of the cult film, who are celebrating its 40th anniversary, allegedly threatened to strike over the lack of interracial sex scenes in the film.

Laird said he was cut from a party scene where the characters are kissing and having sex.

“The associate producer John Peverall came in and gave me a bottle of champagne and said, ‘You’re not in the scene,’” Laird told Metro. “I was like, ‘What the bloody hell is going on…’ This time I’m freaking out that I’ve got the sack.

“Franc Roddam came rushing over and he said, ‘Look, this film is going to be released in the deep south of America, probably South Africa if we’re lucky, and we can’t have any scenes where there’s sex in it with a black man and white women. It’s just not possible, you’re not in the scene, you’re cut.’”

He added: “I realise now, which you didn’t at the time because you cover it up, but I did feel like an outsider.

“Going over that again, for the first time in many years, I thought, ‘Oh my god, it really did affect me as a 20-year-old kid.’”

Gary Shail, Trevor Laird and Phil Daniels in 'Quadrophenia' (Rex Features)

Laird’s Quadrophenia co-star Toyah Willcox added that the cast threatened to strike over the issue.

“I don’t know if you know,” she told Laird, “but we talked about going on strike because of that. All these were walls that were being knocked down, and here we were having to keep to a really bad tradition.”

The Independent has contacted Roddam's representatives for comment.

Laird addresses the sex scene in a Sky Arts documentary marking Quadrophenia’s 40th anniversary on 21 September.