"Beach Blanket Bingo" starring Annette Funicello, Frankie Avalon and Linda Evans.
Updated: December 3, 2011 8:16AM
When writing her life story, “Dynasty” star Linda Evans wanted to serve up more than just food for thought.
“Doing a memoir seemed much too serious,” says the 68-year-old actress. “A friend of mine said, ‘Why don’t you combine your life with what you love to do: cooking?’ ”
Evans, who made her name as a 1960s ingenue on TV’s “The Big Valley” and films including “Beach Blanket Bingo,” is happy to discuss what she dished.
She says her “most painful moment in life” was when husband John Derek left her, but “if he didn’t leave me I would have never had ‘Dynasty.’ John didn’t want me to work.”
Then there was all the hoopla in the ’80s when she kissed iconic star Rock Hudson on the show. Right afterward, it came out that Hudson was diagnosed with AIDS.
“That time gave me a wonderful perspective of what happens when people are driven by fear and not knowledge,” Evans recalls. “People wouldn’t even be around me in the makeup room. That’s astounding to me now.”
She also relishes her long relationship with Yanni. “He was 12 years younger and in the music business,” she says. “Everything in me at first said, ‘It won’t work.’ But my heart said yes. We had nine magical years together.”
She fondly remembers the late John Forsythe, her “Dynasty” co-star.
“When I was 15, my agent sent me for my first speaking part on his show ‘Bachelor Father.’ Years later, when I auditioned for ‘Dynasty,’ John was there and said, ‘My, little Linda Evans. How you’ve grown up. How is your mother, Arlene?’ I brought her to the first audition!
“At that moment, I thought, ‘My God, John, it’s going to be so easy to love you on screen.’ ”
Evans says she lives a quiet life “on 70 acres in the middle of nowhere. I know every dog in the woods and that makes me happy. I have a happy life.”
Cindy Pearlman, Big Picture News