Carol Lynley, a star of the original “Poseidon Adventure” whose acting career spanned six decades, died Tuesday at age 77 in her Los Angeles home, according to media reports.
“She loved working in film as much as she loved going to the movies,” her daughter, Jill Selsman, said in a statement to People.
The Hollywood Reporter wrote that she “embodied the waifish ingenue” in her heyday.
Lynley, born in New York City in 1942, started out as a child model. In 1958, she played the lead role of a teenage girl desperately seeking an abortion in the Broadway play “Blue Denim.” She starred in the 1959 film version as well, earning a Golden Globe nomination.
Films such as “Return to Peyton Place” (1961), “The Pleasure Seekers” (1964) and “Bunny Lake Is Missing” (1965) followed.
But the role for which she would perhaps become best known was as singer Nonnie Parry in “The Poseidon Adventure” (1972), a disaster movie about passengers who band together after their ship is turned upside down by a giant wave.
“Everybody in town wanted [the role],” she said in a 1972 interview, noting that castmate Red Buttons “made my life miserable because he thought I had a better part than he did. Of course, I did …”
Lynley’s film career slowed, but she regularly appeared in guest roles on TV shows, including “Kojak” (1977), “Hawaii Five-O” (1978), “The Love Boat” (1979) and several appearances on “Fantasy Island” (1977-84).
According to IMDb, her last credit was a 2006 short titled “Vic,” directed by Sylvester Stallone’s son Sage.
Lynley, who had a long relationship with talk show host David Frost and also dated Frank Sinatra, was married to publicist Michael Selsman in the early 1960s.
“If there is a world beyond, she’s dancing with her great friend Fred Astaire and enjoying her new life as much as she enjoyed her previous one,” her daughter told People.