Carol Lynley, ‘The Poseidon Adventure’ star, dies at 77

Actress Carol Lynley, best known for her role in the 1972 film “The Poseidon Adventure,” died at her Pacific Palisades home Tuesday after suffering a heart attack, according to her friend, actor Trent Dolan. She was 77.

Lynley began her career as a child model, appearing on the cover of LIFE magazine at the age of 15, before starring in Disney’s “The Light in the Forest” and the independent film “Holiday for Lovers.” Shortly after, she secured a breakout role in the 1958 Broadway play “Blue Denim” and its subsequent film adaptation, in which she played 15 year-old Janet Willard tasked with figuring out how to undergo an illegal abortion after an unwanted pregnancy.

23 PHOTOS
Carol Lynley
See Gallery
Carol Lynley
Carol Lynley, US actress, wearing white shorts, an orange polo neck jumper, an orange headband and an orange fringed scarf, in a publicity portrait, against a blue background, issued for the film, 'The Poseidon Adventure', 1972. The disaster film, directed by Ronald Neame (1911-2010) and Irwin Allen (1916-1991), starred Lynley as 'Nonnie Parry'. (Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images)
FANTASY ISLAND - "The Devil and Mandy Breem / The Millionaire" - Airdate: October 25, 1980. (Photo by Walt Disney Television via Getty Images Photo Archives/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images) RICARDO MONTALBAN;CAROL LYNLEY
CULVER CITY, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Actress Carol Lynley and date attend the "Foxes" Culver City Premiere on February 26, 1980 at MGM Studios in Culver City, California. (Photo by Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
Glenn Ford and Carol Lynley at the 13th Annual Focus Awards, Hollywood, CA 08/29/1989 at the Director's Guild (Photo by Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - 1980 actress Carol Lynley oses for a portrait in 1980 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry Langdon/Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley attends the 'Manhattan Magazine Party' on October 2, 1988 at Canastel's Restaurant in New York City, New York. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley on June 15, 1989 walking the streets in New York City, New York. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley attending the premiere of 'We're No Angels' on December 13, 1989 at Loew's 19th Street Theater in New York City, New York. (Photo by Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley attends the 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof' Opening Night Performance on March 21, 1990 at Eugene O'Neill Theatre in New York City, New York. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley, actor Tony Lo Bianco and actress Joey Heatherton attend the Party to Celebrate the Touring Company of the Play Other People's Money on March 12, 1990 at Cafe Equense in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley attends the 'American Cinema Foundation Gala Honoring Richard Dreyfuss' on November 2, 1996 at Westin Bonaventure Hotel in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley attends the 'Pecker' Santa Moncia Premiere on September 22, 1998 at Laemmle's Monica 4-plex in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley and actor Dennis Christopher attend Manhattan Magazine Party on October 2, 1988 at Canastel's Restaurant in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley and date Mike Silverman attending the world premiere of 'F.I.S.T.' on April 13, 1978 at Filmex in Century City, California. (Photo by Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley attending Seventh Annual American Film Institute Lifetime Achievement Awards Honoring Alfred Hitchcock on March 7, 1979 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley attending 'Joey Heatherton Opening Party' on May 24, 1975 at the Waldorf Hotel in New York City, New York. (Photo by Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS - JANUARY 24: Actress Carol Lynley attends the Larry King Cardiac Foundation Gala at the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel on January 24, 2003 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
Actress Carol Lynley attends the 'We're No Angels' New York City Premiere on December 13, 1989 at Loews 19th Street Theater in New York City, New York. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 09: JOURNEY TO THE UNKNOWN - "Eve" 6/23/69 Carol Lynley (Photo by Walt Disney Television via Getty Images Photo Archives/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images)
TV Personality David Frost and Actress Carol Lynley attend the 51st Annual Academy Awards on April 9, 1979 at Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 09: JOURNEY TO THE UNKNOWN - "Eve" 6/23/69 Dennis Waterman, Carol Lynley (Photo by Walt Disney Television via Getty Images Photo Archives/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - DECEMBER 29: Actress Carol Lynley attends the screening for the 40th Anniversary of "The Poseidon Adventure" at the American Cinematheque's Egyptian Theatre on December 29, 2012 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 20: Actress Carol Lynley attends The Hollywood Show held at Westin LAX Hotel on April 20, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Albert L. Ortega/WireImage)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

The play, written by James Leo Herlihy, received immediate criticism for its laissez-faire attitude towards abortion, leading to a revised ending in the film that sees Janet go through with her pregnancy. Despite the controversy, the role earned Lynley a nomination for a Golden Globe Award for Most Promising Newcomer in 1959.

The actress continued to star in a wide array of Hollywood films, including “Return to Peyton Place,” “Under the Yum Yum Tree,” “Bunny Lake is Missing,” “The Pleasure Seekers,” “The Cardinal” and “The Poseidon Adventure,” in which she performed the Oscar-winning song “The Morning After.” In 2006, she appeared in Sylvester Stallone’s 30-minute “Vic.”

The Hollywood veteran was also a television regular, appearing in shows such as “The Big Valley,” “Mannix,” “It Takes a Thief,” “Night Gallery,” “The Invaders,” “Kojak,” “Hawaii Five-O,” “The Night Stalker” and many more.

Lynley was married to publicist Michael Selsman from 1960-1964, during which the two had one child Jill Selsman.

RELATED: Celebrity deaths of 2019

12 PHOTOS
Celebrity deaths of 2019
See Gallery
Celebrity deaths of 2019
Luke Perry, 52: Read more here
Carol Channing, 97: Read more here
Bob Einstein, 76: Read more here
Georgia Engel, 70: Read more here
Actor Luke Perry, 52. Read more here.
Fatima Ali, 29: Read more here
Nipsey Hussle, 33: Read more here

Peter Tork of The Monkees, 77: Read more here

Karl Lagerfeld, 85: Read more here

Comedian Kevin Barnett, 32: Read more here
The Prodigy frontman Keith Flint, 49: Read more here
Katherine Helmond, 89: Read more here
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Read Full Story

Sign up for Entertainment Insider by AOL to get the hottest pop culture news delivered straight to your inbox!

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.