Kathy was perfect as a 'body double' for the teenage actress in 'The Blue Lagoon' movie.
Kathy was perfect as a ‘body double’ for the teenage actress in ‘The Blue Lagoon’ movie.




Jackie Hickmott with Kathy in Sydney’s world famous zoo. (Richard Swansborough took the picture).  Additional frames from John Harding’s 16mm cine camera.

zoo KAT14Kathy-JackieJackie Hickmott modeling for VincentsJackie modeling for a city billboard.

Jackie Hickmott and Kathy Troutt were permitted to swim with dolphin at Sydney’s beautiful Taronga Zoo on Sydney Harbor.  The dolphin pool has since closed.



Mike Perry was a journalist at the Sydney newspaper THE SUN who specialized in marine stories.
Mike Perry was a journalist at the Sydney newspaper THE SUN who specialized in marine stories.


Possibly the best interview on that deep dive.

A real effort would have been involved in getting Kathy into a hard hat dive suit.  Most women would not attempt it.  We’ve known Kathy to go camping and sleep in a tent pitched on snow.  A big deal in Australia.  The deep dive was made when still aged sixteen and without her parents knowledge.


Deep dive 2



Ben Cropp and Eva Papp (1972)
Ben Cropp and Eva Papp (Mrs Ben Cropp No.2 – see Playing with Sharks’ newsreel).
Ben Cropp at work on the Barrier Reef.



Shipwrecks in and around Sydney Harbour
Shipwrecks in and around Sydney Harbour



Ben Cropp with future wife Van Laman (December 1963)


Ben Cropp story
Ben Cropp story – click to enlarge




Kathy’s first documentary ‘Mermaids in Paradise’ when aged 19  (National Screen and Sound Archives)


Celebrity hound – appeared in many of Ben’s documentaries of the sea.

 Ben’s pup ‘Tuffy’ was a TV celebrity


The underwater photography career of Ben Cropp got a boost with his material of a whale shark and diver off Montague Island NSW in 1965. Very rare footage at the time. Although photographed only with 16mm movie film the quality was good and large prints were enabled. National Geographic magazine later using one of the frames over 3 pages as a centrefold. Still pictures went viral around the world and a documentary would have done well with TV sales.

Note the date.
Note the date. August 19, 1691
Ben Cropp book published in 2010
Ben Cropp book published in 2010


Port Douglas markets in 2003, Ben finds one of his books for sale.

Divers at various times  for Ben Cropp were Vic and John



Memo: double click to enlarge

A cover shot on Women’s Weekly is gold in terms of good publicity.  It’s one of the most successful magazines in the world – in demographic reach and survives today – not as a weekly but as a monthly, as does Women’s Day.

PIX, Post and Everybody’s have gone.  People may survive – with a much different content formula.

Editors choice – the top nine – however we hope there will more more pictures in the near future AND PERHAPS THE VIDEO (Skippy – The Marine Biologist featuring Kathy as herself).


KATHY TROUTT, (‘The Blue Lagoon’ body double )

Kathy Troutt was hired to search Fijian waters for dolphin that might be trained to appear in a major feature film. At Dunk Island, Kathy was hired to do nude stand-in for the leading female actor. At the last moment this plan was changed and the actor performed her own nude underwater sequence – however, Kathy received enormous advance publicity.

Val with Christioher from The Blue Lagoon. TEN TV Sydney 13 July 2016
Valerie Taylor with Christopher from The Blue Lagoon. TEN TV studio  13 July 2016.  (Ron and Val Taylor did the underwater filming). Kathy was originally contracted to train dolphins for the film, this was expanded for her to be a body double for the teenage star.


 Photographed by Valerie Taylor

Kathy did nude stand-in scenes and especially all the diving for main teen actor, Brooke Shields.

Some film crew members later estimated that Kathy is in much of the finished movie!



Part Two on Daily Motion.com  free  480P



Kathy Troutt – center, top row

The Blue Lagoon script had the boy star of the film riding a pair of dolphin as per this example. That plan was dropped when finding and then training dolphin in Fiji was not going to be practical.  Kathy Troutt was  ‘body double’ for the young actress who starred in the movie.  The Blue Lagoon link (below) is to You Tube (9 December 2013)

(above)  Age of Consent movie trailer


Kathy is shown in centre – top row.

Others include Kay Overell, Valerie Taylor and Eva Cropp




John Harding and Valerie Taylor during the infamous expeditions by a Belgian University – which was at the time and probably still is the largest, longest and most expensive expedition to study and film with 35mm cameras the reef..  (Lady Musgrave Island to Lizard Island over seven months).

Ron Taylor at Mt.Gambier, South Australia between filming in sink holes for his documentary “The Cave Divers” (1967).
Ben Cropp with future wife Van Laman (December 1963)


John Harding (in 1964)

Phil Eather (above, who also had a crush on Gai Girdlestone, (below) Kathy’s school friend and diver)

.Gai Girdlestone had two brothers who were keen skindivers.

Ron and Valerie Taylor (Both AM)

Valerie Taylor during the Belgian GBR expedition (1967)
The most expensive of filming expeditions for educational purposes. Led by Ron and Valerie Taylor in Australia for a Belgian University which had access to this naval ship about to be retired. (!967)

Ron and Valerie share time with a young penguin, Montague Island (1966)

Ron Taylor filming during 1966. Ron built and designed his own underwater housings.

Ron Taylor World Spear Fishing Champion. Sponsored by CMAS the world diving organization and held every two years. Ron won the title in French Polynesia (Tahiti).

Kathy first met The Taylor’s while making her record deep dive on compressed air, when aged not quite seventeen.  They have been firm friends since, often working together on feature film projects (Age of Consent; Skippy; The Blue Lagoon).

PS Ron and Valerie Taylor pictures are from the library of our mutual long-term underwater photographer friend John Harding.  See also  the coral sea

JH in 2001


French magazine and the world champion trophy – based on a famous sculpture Winged Victory of Samothrance.





(Above and Below) Valerie circa 1991. Sydney newspaper (1967) below – Sunfish captured for Marineland aquarium, Sydney.
Valerie Taylor with whale shark (1967) encountered off Seal Rocks NSW with John Harding.


Ron and Val at home.


Valerie Taylor. Freshwater cave diving 1967



Aquarium to study Crown of Thorns starfish was established in 1967 aboard De Moor (Belgian Navy vessel).
Later in 1967 Ron upgraded his movie camera to 35mm gauge for The Belgian Expedition.