HAPPY BIRTHDAY CAROL LYNLEY!

Carol Lynley turns 66 today and in honor I thought I would share my favorite Carol photo. This was taken during production of the 1970 comedy Norwood, which reunited True Grit love birds Glen Campbell and Kim Darby. It was based on a novel about a Vietnam vet who bored with is hometown after returning from the war makes a road trip to New York to try to find fame and fortune as a singer. Along the way he has encounters with his GI budddy (Joe Namath), a hooker (Lynley), a Greenwich Village hippie (Tisha Sterling), and a sweet pregant girl whom he falls in love with (Darby). It was produced by Hal B. Wallis and was initially intended for Elvis Presley.

Carol has only about 10 minutes of screen time but steals the movie with her amusing performance as feisty, foul-mouthed, city-girl-wannabe Yvonne Phillips or as she exclaims to Campbell’s Norwood, “My name is not Laverne it’s Yvonne! But I don’t want you calling me nuthin’!” The two bicker and fight driving together from Texas to Illinois after she becomes his unexpected passenger when he is hired by shady Pat Hingle to drive a car towing another to New York. After he learns from Yvonne that the two cars are hot or as she explains, “They are about to burst into flames” Norwood ditches her and them after a high speed chase by a town’s sheriff. These are the best scenes in the movie and the chemisty between the two far exceeds the film’s major pairing of Campbell with Darby.

Carol’s screen time should have been longer but when filming began Campbell decided his fans wouldn’t appreciate hearing the cussing from Lynley’s character or the fact that she was a hooker in this G-rated movie. He prevailed with the producers and despite Carol’s pleading her language was cleaned up though she does get in one “country son-of-a-bitch” and her “profession” is dubious. Also cut was a scene in the back seat of the car where she seduces him. Even still Carol proved she had comedic ability once again but for most of the ’70s it remained untapped.

 

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