20 QUESTIONS with TRINA PARKS!


--- About Diamonds Are Forever:


1. Some sources say that originally you were to be called Bambi with Ms. Garrett to play Thumper (many people still get your characters mixed up.) Is this true?

A. No, I was originally and always the character named "Thumper."

2. Because of the obviously gay henchmen, Mr. Wint and Mr. Kidd, in the film, there is speculation among fans and in some articles that Bambi and Thumper were supposed to be lesbians. Was that ever mentioned on the set? Do you think Bambi and Thumper were lovers?

A. No! Neither Bambi nor Thumper are lesbians and NO! that was never mentioned on the set and NO! Bambi and Thumper were not and never will be lovers!

(Well, I think that's clear! - ed :>)

3. In the shot where Thumper dives into the pool, she is wearing an "Afro." Did someone else do this dive and if so, why?

A. Someone else did the dive because I could not, rather, the studio could not take the chance on me getting hurt and not being able to finish the film. Unfortunately, I did not do the stunt women's hair (which looked terrible, I agree).

4. Why didn't you get a credit?

A. Don't know why I never got the credit. It was a mistake which I believe has or should have been corrected.

5. How did Parade magazine ever get the idea that you were 6'3"?

A. I have no idea.

6. Were you ever contacted about reprising your role as Thumper in a subsequent James Bond film?

A. No, I have never been contacted, just like several other "Bond girls" that have done just one film. People do ask me, "Why don't I do another one?" I've also asked the studio that. Personally, I think it would be a wonderful idea.

7. A lot of James Bond fans are seeking your autograph. Do you have any autographed pictures for sale?

A. I will have my photos for sale on the Internet in the near future. I will have some of the stills from the film and from on the set.

8. Have you ever made an appearance at a James Bond convention?

A. Yes, I have been to one James Bond convention.


--- About Darktown Strutters:


9. Darktown Strutters is an absolutely amazing film. I've never seen anything like it! Would you say that it attempts to ridicule racism? After all, it makes fun of whites, African-Americans and all men in general!

A. I would say it does exactly that, ridicule racism by being very "camp" about it. It just makes fun of everything, like the comedy series ‘In Living Color.'

10. Who came up with the idea? How were you contacted to play the starring role?

A. I can say it was the writers idea. I was cast from the producers seeing me in "Diamonds Are Forever."

11. What was the reaction when it was released? How do you think it would be received if it was released today?

A. It is a shame more people did not see it. If it was released today, it probably would be a comedic hit. Publicity was not very well done for the movie, that much I know.


--- About The Muthers:


12. In this film's "shower scene," you always remain discreetly covered (unlike some of the other actresses!) You never appeared nude in a film. Was this a conscious career decision on your part?

A. Being nude in anything that I have done has been a NO! NO! for me. I was asked to disrobe and I refused. I said, "Let the other actresses do it if they like. Why must I also?" It wasn't that kind a film to me.

13. Your long hair in this movie was quite a different look for you. Any particular reason for the change?

A. That was what the costume person wanted me to look like.


--- About other films:


14. Do you appear in The Blues Brothers? If so, in which scene and what are you doing and wearing?

A. Yes, I am in the church scene dancing in a pink dress and pink hat on the right side pew in the front row.

15. Same question as 15. for Beyond the Valley of the Dolls.

A. In "Beyond the Valley of the Dolls" I am doing stunt work only.


--- About TV:


16. In the edited version of Night Gallery - The Phantom Farmhouse, that now runs on The SciFi channel, it is not clear if your character, Betty, is a doctor or a patient. Do you recall which she was?

A. Betty is a patient

(By the way, Columbia House now has the Night Gallery series out on video. The unedited version of The Phantom Farmhouse is among the episodes released. Yeah! - ed)

17. What do you remember about your appearance on McCoy the Mystery Movie TV series?

A. I played one of the people who would help Tony Curtis (McCoy) trap the bad guys. Roscoe Lee Browne, I believe, was the one who would hire us to pose as people in disguises to trap the bad guy.


--- About your career in general:


18. Do you have any recordings currently available?

A. Unfortunately, no, but I really want to very soon.

19. Besides in your films, are any of your dance performances available on video?

A. Yes. I do have some dance films on video. At the library in New York you can find my performance of the "Negro Spiritual" Swing Low Sweet Chariot. It was Helen Tamaris's piece. She danced with Martha Graham's company and she was the choreographer of my performance. She chose me to be the first person to do it besides her.

(Click here for more information on The Trina Parks Collection of the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts - ed)

20. Besides continuing to perform and teach, do you have any other plans?

A. Yes. I and another plan to open a dance studio.


Thank you, Ms. Parks!


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