Click here to read the latest posts from my friend columnist David Savage. He pays tribute to the singing talent of Karen Black and the underrated Smile (1975) starring Bruce Dern, Barbara Feldon and such ’70s starlets as Joan Prather, Annette O’Toole, Colleen Camp, Melanie Griffith, and Denise Nickerson.

Trivia: Karen Black won a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination for her role as the tacky waitress girlfriend of concert pianist dropout Jack Nicholson in Five Easy Pieces (1970). Carol Lynley was offered the role of Catherine, the sophisticated financee of Nicholson’s brother who has more in common with Jack. According to Carol herself, she wanted the flashier waitress role and since the producers were only paying scale she turned the other part down. “Big mistake,” Carol exclaimed to me. Susan Anspach took Carol’s role and had an affair with Nicholson which produced a son named Caleb.



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