> Elvis' Women: Deborah Walley



Deborah Walley

Deborah Walley

Spinout, 1966

Born: August 12, 1943 in Bridgeport, Connecticut, USA
Husband: John Ashley (1962 - 1966)
Died: May 10, 2001 in Sedona, Arizona, USA
Deborah publicity photo



"Working with Elvis was wonderful, which was quite something because I really didn't think too much of him when I started the film Spinout, and we became fast friends during the filming." --Deborah Walley

Although she is mostly known for her many roles in "beach" movies, Deborah Walley started out on the stage in New York. Her parents were professional figure skaters, which meant that Deborah did a lot of traveling with them during the summer months, but spent her school months with a nanny in New York. After studying at the Academy of Dramatic Arts, she began getting roles on- and off-Broadway ("a lot of off-Broadway", she says.) Talent scout Joyce Selznick saw her in Chekhov's Three Sisters, and asked her to audition for episodes of the TV series', The Naked City and Route 66. This led to the role of Gidget in Gidget Goes Hawaiian, her first film.

A couple of Disney films followed and then it was straight to the beach! She appeared in such classic titles as Beach Blanket Bingo, It's A Bikini World, The Ghost In The Invisible Bikini(!), Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine (!!) and of course Spinout.



Spinout, in which our gal Deborah plays Les, the pseudo-androgynous drummer in Elvis' band, who along with Shelley Fabares and Dianne McBain, is out to snag Elvis. Elvis, of course, tries to remain single in the face of all this attention. It's a tough thankless job that's got to be done! Elvis and Deborah in Spinout


Deborah as Les in Spinout Deborah tells a story about a motorcycle ride she took with Elvis around this time. They were out near Malibu when they came across a German-shepherd-type dog along the side of the road that was obviously starving. Elvis stopped, picked it up, and took care of it all afternoon, then brought it to Deborah's house (in his Rolls, no less!) and she kept it for years.

Around this time, Elvis had been studying metaphysical and religious books, and loved to talk to people about it (also see Donna Douglas). Deborah always gave Elvis credit for introducing her to the spiritual side of life, and referred to their relationship as that of teacher/pupil.

Deborah's last major film was the family-classic, Benji in 1974. She then retired to spend more time with her three sons. "I quit acting because... I was never home, and I thought they'd grow up and I wouldn't even remember what their names were." She also devoted time to writing. She's written a few screenplays as well as quite a few books, some of which are available through her website.

Sadly, Deborah lost her battle with cancer May 10th, 2001. She will be greatly missed by us all. Before her death, she'd apparently finished a book about her relationship with Elvis, but it has yet to be published.

Deborah the Firecracker!

Deborah Links


Deborah publicity photo

Sources:
"Starlet", by Kim Holston, 1988. pages 244 - 247.
Deborah Walley IMDB

Other Links:


Deborah Photos


Click for larger image.

as Gidget with James Darren

with Mike Callan


Deborah Video Clips

Loading...


Deborah Videos!


Buy Gidget Goes Hawaiian buy Complete Gidget Collection: Gidget / Gidget Goes Hawaiian / Gidget Goes To Rome Buy Bon Voyage buy Summer Magic buy Beach Blanket Bingo buy Frankie and Annette Collection buy Sergeant Dead Head buy Muscle Beach Party / Ski Party (Double Feature) buy Dr. Goldfoot And The Bikini Machine buy Ghost Of Dragstrip Hollow/The Ghost in the Invisible Bikini (Double Feature) buy Spinout buy The Bubble buy Mothers-in-Law - The Complete Series buy The Severed Arm buy Grindhouse Horror Collection, Volume 1 (contains The Severed Arm) buy Benji buy Benji / For The Love Of Benji - Double Feature


Deborah Soundtracks and Other Stuff!



Get soundtrack music at CD Universe!
James Darren - Gidget Goes Hawaiian Spinout soundtrack MP3 Spinout / Double Trouble soundtracks

or download songs on iTunes!

Shout It Out! Leave Us Your Comments About Deborah Walley!



Main Page Main Menu of Wahinis List of Movies
Video / Music Store Links Contact Greggers