|Lana in Diamonds Are Forever.|
Café: In a 2007 interview, you discussed playing the character Debbie as a young girl in The Searchers. You noted Jeffrey Hunter's "incredible kindness." Did you have any interaction with John Wayne?
|Lana in The Searchers.|
Café: How did John Ford treat you as a child actress?
LW: I don't think John Ford liked me. He never really spoke to me. I think the only thing he ever said to me was in the scene where Chris (the dog) and I run up to the headstone. He said: "Can you bend at the waist?" I couldn't bend at the waist, though I tried very hard to do it.
Café: Peyton Place was already an established hit when you joined the cast in 1966. What are some of your memories of working with Ryan O'Neal, Mia Farrow, and the other cast members?
|A publicity shot from Peyton Place.|
Café: You made quite an impression as Plenty O'Toole in Diamonds Are Forever and she remains one of the best-remembered "Bond Girls." Why do you think Plenty has remained so popular over the years?
LW: Hopefully because I wanted her to be very sweet. I didn't want to appear like a hooker. Shill is not really the top category when you list careers you would like to have had. And I was very worried about that. So, I made her very ingenuous and just very nice. That's what came across and I think that's what people identified with.
Café: I've seen the two deleted scenes with Plenty: the dinner scene with Bond and when she discovers James and Tiffany Case together. Do you know why they were cut from the final film?
|Lana and friend Sherry in Williamsburg.|
Café: You were friends with Sean Connery before Diamonds Are Forever. How did the two of you meet?
LW: My boyfriend at the time was dear friends with Sean. We were invited to dinner at his house. So, I went to his house, we had dinner, and I got to know him.
Café: What do you think of Daniel Craig as James Bond?
LW: I adore him. I think, at last, other than Sean, he is James Bond.
Café: What led you to take a break from acting from the mid-1980s until a few years ago?
LW: Several things. My mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. I had gone behind the camera at that point as well, so I was producing. I was working at Universal Studios as director of development for television films. I moved my Mom in with me. Lots of things. It was just unfortunate.
Café: What were some of the made-for-TV films that you were involved with from a production standpoint?
LW: Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer mystery Murder Me, Murder You. Lynda Carter in Born to Be Sold, which was, at that time, the highest-rated television film. Hotline (also with Lynda Carter) and two Lynda Carter specials. I rewrote six episodes of Bring 'Em Back Alive, a TV series with Bruce Boxleitner. And I produced The Mystery of Natalie Wood, which was an ABC miniseries.
LW: I like different ones for different reasons. I'm so thrilled to have been part of The Searchers. That's something that will go on forever. It meant the world to me to be in a film like that, which is so iconic--with John Wayne, Ken Curtis, Jeffrey Hunter, and Harry Carey. It's a beautiful film that holds up to this day. I'm very proud of it.
Café: You show a number of adorable dogs and cats on your FB page. Are they all yours?
LW: (laughs) Oh, yes! I haven't even put the half of them up. I can't get them to sit still.
Café: Do you have any upcoming films or appearances that you'd like to share with our readers?
LW: I have two films coming out. One is called Killing Poe, which is a black comedy. Then, I have a thriller coming out called Bestseller.
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