Before Scarlett Johansson donned Natasha Romanov's red tresses and Lynda Carter wore ancient Grecian skateboarding gear, Angie Bowie — a.k.a. the model "Jipp Jones," the then-wife of David Bowie, and mother of Source Code director Duncan Jones — gave both Marvel's superspy and DC Comics' Amazonian princess a shot. Neither of her forays into superheroics were picked up, but the photographic evidence does have a magnificently deranged 1970s vibe.
Here's how she described her experience briefly portraying the Russian secret agent (with African-American actor Ben Carruthers as Daredevil):
I received permission from Stan Lee to have the rights to Daredevil and Black Widow for a year. We were unable to place the series. Actor, writer, Benny Carruthers and I did the photo shoot with Terry O'Neill and Natasha Kornilkoff costume designer and Barbara Daly - make-up in London and that was all that ever happened. Unfortunately at that time it was considered too difficult and expensive to film, special effects, etc.
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Quoth The Comics Reader in 1975 of this photo shoot:
In the photo above, the guy standing behind her is actor friend Ben Carruthers, who is supposed to be dressed as Daredevil (in case you couldn't tell). She was heard to give a sample of some of the kind of dialogue that could be expected: ‘You would do well to watch your tone. The Black Widow does not take orders from anyone.' We won't hold our breath waiting for this to be bought by the networks."
O'Neill also shot Bowie for these Wonder Woman test shots she pitched for television — the role would eventually go to Cathy Lee Crosby. Why wasn't her Wonder Woman greenlit? The Wonder Woman Museum:
Bowie's audition was mentioned in the Feb. 11, 1974 issue of Newsweek, in which it was reported that Angela Bowie had been considered for the role of Wonder Woman for an upcoming ABC-TV movie but lost the part for her refusal to wear a bra.
Bowie described the experience later in her 1993 autobiography:
First I showed them the photographs, which totally flabbergasted the director- things were going well so far- but then, before I went to my dressing room to don the stipulated turtleneck, some woman from the studio came up to me.
"I see you're not wearing a bra," she said. "You have to wear one for the screen test. It's mandatory."
I couldn't believe it. I hadn't worn a bra for years. "Well, if that's what you want, okay," I said. "But I think you're going to have a problem finding one small enough."
She didn't like that very much, but she walked off, and I went to the dressing room.
After that setback, one of the show's purported writers tried to pull a "casting couch" on her. Bowie's response to this creep? "Now take yourself out of my dressing room before I fucking kill you!" As Angie soon discovered, she was never really being considered for the role. A pity, she had the Paradise Island no-bullshit attitude down pat.
[Via The Mary Sue and The Wonder Woman Museum]