Barbara Parkins

Barbara Parkins (born May 22, 1942) is a Canadian-American television and film actress. Parkins was born in Vancouver, British Columbia. At the age of sixteen, she and her mother moved to Los Angeles, where she enrolled at Hollywood High School and began to study acting, tap, ballet, and fencing at the Falcon School, where her mother played the piano. Her earliest employment was as a backup singer and dancer in the nightclub acts of major stars, including comedian George Burns. She made her film debut in a low-budget crime caper, 20,000 Eyes, in 1961, and also guested in a number of television series, including Leave It to Beaver, The Untouchables, Perry Mason, and The Wide Country. Shortly before gaining nationwide fame, Parkins worked as an usher in a cinema to pay for drama lessons. Parkins was involved in two of the most highly publicized projects of the 1960s — the ABC primetime serial, Peyton Place, and the film adaptation of Jacqueline Susann's best-selling novel, Valley of the Dolls. In Peyton Place Parkins received lead billing for her role as small town bad girl, Betty Anderson.


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