Hollywood celebrity Linda Evans celebrated a big anniversary last year - under the probably equally famous name Krystle Carrington: It was the 40th birthday of the start of the hit series "Denver Clan". On January 12, 1981, ABC broadcast the first episode of the long-running hit, known as "Dynasty" in the United States. The cult soap made Evans world famous in the role of the angelic, blonde Krystle, who marries oil magnate and patriarch Blake Carrington (John Forsythe), who is almost 25 years his senior.
From 1983, ZDF also included the soap opera about the rivalry between the two rich families Carrington and Colby and their oil companies in the state of Colorado. Krystle's catfight with Carrington's beastly ex-wife Alexis (Joan Collins), who made life difficult for the blonde successor with intrigues, was legendary. It was about money, power and sex – 218 episodes long. The award-winning role earned Evans a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a TV Drama Series.
That's all a long time ago. Evans celebrates her 80th birthday this Friday (November 18). The actress has long since retired from show business, apart from small guest roles. She lives far from Hollywood on a rural estate in Washington State. The TV icon still shows her fans with a perfectly styled blonde hairstyle. Evans posts pictures of her country house or with her dog in the garden on Instagram. She shares life wisdom and occasionally glamor shots from the old days. Fans from all over the world react with nice comments, many of them in German.
In this country she obviously has a loyal fan base. "I get more fan mail from Germany than from any other country in Europe," Evans said in an interview with the German Press Agency in 2020. "My great German fans have always been wonderful, very enthusiastic and a part of my life over the years." At that time, the creators of the ZDF series "Das Traumschiff" managed to get Evans out of retirement. In December 2020 she played a guest role alongside "Traumschiff" captain Florian Silbereisen.
Next to Cologne-born Udo Kier, she appeared in front of the film camera again last year. Todd Stephens' tragic comedy "Swan Song" centers on an aging barber (Kier) who is tasked with dressing a former wealthy client (Evans) for the funeral after she dies. "20 years after ending my acting career, I read a script I just couldn't say no to," Evans wrote on Instagram for the theatrical release in July 2021. It made her laugh and cry and she wanted to be a part of this moving story with all her heart.
Evans, once courted as one of the most beautiful women in Hollywood, has had a tumultuous life. Her father died when she was 15 years old. According to Evans' website, she took acting classes as a teenager to overcome her shyness. Hollywood became aware of the pretty, brunette student through a commercial. She dropped the last letters of her family name, Evanstad, dyed her hair blonde, and landed the lead in the hit TV western, The Big Valley, in 1965. She played daughter Audra alongside Barbara Stanwyck, who appeared as the widowed ranch matriarch.
At 25, Evans married actor and director JohnDerek, whose marriage to Bond girl Ursula Andress had recently ended. Just a few years later, Derek met and fell in love with a 16-year-old starlet who later became Bo Derek. Evan's second marriage to a real estate agent in the 1970s also didn't last long. Then, in the 1990s, she began dating "New Age" musician Yanni. All relationships remained childless.
The "Denver Clan" star later cleaned up the image of the perfect glamor queen in interviews. She had depression for years, then chronic back pain, Evans said in 2016 on the television show "Entertainment Weekly". In an interview with the magazine "People" in 2021, she also spoke about serious life crises. "I really had to fight my way back," Evans said. Several back operations would have helped to overcome the pain. After her most recent film role in "Swan Song" at the age of 78, she would now trust her beloved motto "Anything is possible" again.