The Independent, Long Beach, CA: July 9, 1972
by Bob Martin

 

Anne Lockhart is an 18-year old girl with a very attractive face and a very sexy figure, and it should come as a surprise to no one that she is launching a career in show business.

The name Lockhart has been a prominent one in the acting world for several decades. Gene Lockhart, who appeared as a big-name character actor in more than 300 movies in the 1930s, '40s, and '50s before his death in 1957, was Anne's grandfather.

And June Lockhart - star of screen, stage and television (notably the Lassie and Lost in Space series) - is her mother.

Little wonder that Anne is sticking with the name Lockhart - it certainly can't hurt her career. (Her legal name is Maloney, after her father, Dr. John F. Maloney, a New York surgeon, who was divorced from her mother when Anne was quite young.)

Mother and daughter will be seen together on television soon (Wednesday, July 26) as guest stars in Honeymoon Suite, a 90-minue special movie produced by Screen Gems for ABC-TV. The show will air from 1:30 to 3p.m. and will serve as a pilot project for a new form of daytime viewing.

"It's the first movie made especially for afternoon showing on a network," Anne told me in an interview.

"We just finished it. It was taped and was done continuously in one day, with four cameras. It was more like doing a play, but we had rehearsed for two weeks."

Anne and June play daughter-mother in Honeymoon Suite, so you might say they had a lot of practice.

 

 

I asked Anne what the show is about.

"Oh it's a comedy," she explained. "It takes place at a Beverly Hills hotel. There are two segments to it. One involves a newlywed couple and the other is about a 50th wedding anniversary celebration in which married couples of three generations are involved."

Henry Gibson and Rose Marie have starring roles as a bellhop and a maid, and other guest stars include Gloria De Haven, Arthur O'Connell and Martha Scott.

Although Honeymoon Suite marks the first time Anne has guest-starred with her mother on television, this was not the first time they had acted together. They have been co-starring in the road company of Forty Carats for several months.

"We played in it last January and February In New Jersey and we did it in Illinois in April. In July we'll go to Ohio to do Forty Carats and in August we're going to do it in Honolulu."

As in Honeymoon Suite, mother and daughter play mother-daughter In Forty Carats. Anne pointed out that it's a light comedy in which a woman of 40 ends up marrying a young man of 22 and the woman's daughter of 17 winds up marrying a man of 45.

"Sounds as though it might make an interesting movie," I said, and Anne quickly pointed out that it's going to be made into a movie this year.

"I'm in contention for the role of the daughter - they're sending me a script today," she said. "But they've just picked Liv Ullman for the mother's role and I'm not sure I look enough like her. Guess I'll have to dye my hair blonde and learn to speak with a Swedish accent."

Anne has fairly dark hair and dark eyes, whereas her mother has light hair and blue eyes. Anne's facial features bear a striking resemblance to those of her famous mother, however.

"Oh, yes, I think I look like my mother," she said with a laugh in reply to a question. She said it as though she hears the question from everyone she meets.

"Mother's birthday party was the other day, and Karen Block mistook me to be my mother.

"But I've also been told that I look a little bit like Natalie Wood," Anne said.

Do you and your mother ever disagree on acting? she was asked.

"We usually don't disagree, but she might give me some constructive criticism. But usually the way, I think something should be played is the way she thinks it should be played, too.

"Sometimes I might oven disagree with her when she makes a suggestion. Sometimes I might, say, 'Let's look-at it this way.'

"But we love working together. I have so much fun working with her."

The rising young actress said she has never had an acting lesson in her life - a claim her mother also could make.

"But 1 knew by the time I was 4 that I wanted to be an actress. It's all I've ever wanted to do. I realized that school was necessary, but all the time I was just itching to get out so I could start acting.

"I've never had any dramatic coaching - never even any training on 'how to act' in school. Notes pinned to my pillow by my mother after she has seen me have been my principal bits of advice."

Anne has a sister, June, who is two years younger. "I think June will be an actress, too," she said. "I think she's going to be one of the funniest persons in the world. I'd like to see her grow up to be a modern-day Mae West."

"Oh, does she have the figure for it?" I asked.

"She's developing rapidly," laughed Anne.

Miss Lockhart has been out of school for a little over a year now, and she has been living on her own all that time. She has a steady boyfriend, Tom Stovall, a singer-actor-dancer in Jesus Christ, Superstar.

On the day of our interview in the office of a public relations firm, she had just received word she had been picked to play Joan Crawford's daughter in an episode of Universal's The Sixth Sense series for next fall. The segment will be called Dear Joan: We're Going to Scare You to Death!

"Joan was helpful to my mother when she was young," Anne told me. "They met through my grandfather, and mommy used to visit her on the set and they'd have lunch together. Joan was very motherly to her, I guess. I'm really excited about meeting her.

"John Newland Is directing it-and he's an old friend of my mother, too. They were in a flop on Broadway together.

"I'm going to play Joan's daughter, who has been drowned in a boating accident. But at one point I come dramatically out of the water.

"I do the whole thing soaking wet.

"And I just did an 'Owen Marshall'-we just finished shooting It-In which I did the whole thing wet. My girl friend and I played swimmers in college."

Last winter Anne completed a role in a movie called Jory. "1 heard It will be released soon-maybe in early fall. It's a Western, and I play a saloon hooker. John Marley, B. J. Thomas and Robbie Benson are in it."

She had a part in an episode of Cannon the first part of this year. "I was a girl in a Charles Manson sort of group-I ran around with a knife between my teeth. It has been on rerun already."

I asked Anne if having a famous actress for a mother helped her career.

"Well, she doesn't get my jobs for me," came the reply.

Though Miss Lockhart has been a fulltime actress for only a year, she got her start at the age of 4.

It was back in the days when short features were still being made for the movies.

"It was called T Is for Tumbleweed, she recalled. "I haven't seen it since I was 4. Gee, I'd really like to see It again. It was about a little girl who wore a red ribbon in her hair. Some boys pulled the ribbon off her hair, and it landed on a tumbleweed. The wind blew the tumbleweed and the little girl chased after it all across New Mexico.

"She finally caught up with the ribbon in a broken-down adobe church. I recall the scene vividly. We actually filmed it on location In New Mexico. I've known ever since that I wanted to be an actress."

For six years, ending in 1964, June Lockhart played "Lassie's mother" on the popular TV series. Anne says she used to appear on some of the Lassie shows and that she and her sister did Kool-Aid, Crest toothpaste and Foremost milk commercials with their mother.

"I also did an episode of Death Valley Days as a young girl, but mainly my early life was just school," Anne said.

Most of her education was acquired at Marymount, a private school near her home, in Brentwood, but her last year was at Verde Valley School in Arizona. "It's a lovely, beautiful, small, private, progressive school, devoted mainly to the arts. I appeared in two school plays and did dancing and also a lot of painting and jewelry making. June (her sister) is there now."

I asked Anne what her childhood as the daughter of a famous movie and TV actress had been like.

"Oh, it was completely normal," she answered. "I always had a home. Mother was home most of my growing up years-she made a point of being home. There was nothing unhappy in my life-I had a great time."

Anne said she was born in New York City but came to California when she was quite young. "We lived in Brentwood until I was about 15, then moved to the beach."

After her mother and father broke up, her mother married John Lindsay, an architect, in 1959. After 11 years, they were divorced in October 1970.

Anne said she has vivid memories of Gene Lockhart, her grandfather, "but I was 4 when he died." She termed him "a lovely, sweet pixie." She also said she thinks her sister resembles him more than she does her mother.

Miss Lockhart said she had studied ballet for eight years and loves it, but wouldn't want to be" a professional ballet dancer. "Their life is really back-breaking."

"I'm not terribly athletic," the 5-foot, 7-lnch Miss Lockhart told me, "but I love to swim.

"And I went to a lot of movies and watched a lot of television as a young girl. 1 considered it a part of my education, because I knew I wanted to be an actress."

You're on your way now, Anne. And I have a feeling the name Lockhart is going to be a prominent one in showbiz for a good many years to come.