What was filming those beach films like?
“It was so much fun. Don Rickles was in a couple of the films, so he would come when they were changing the lights and the cameras and just start making fun of Annette and Frankie and he got everybody rolling on the floor. It was especially funny because Annette didn’t have a mean bone in her body. She didn’t swear, she came prepared. She was a real professional, and very sweet — almost naive. She and Frankie were so much alike — both Italian, both dark hair, both white as ever, and when we were on the set, we would just laugh at them because Frankie and his cohorts wore bun-huggers, these tight little bathing suits. And the real surfers were like, ‘What? What is that?’ ”
How did you get discovered?
“Mike Dormer and Lee Teacher had some meeting with a studio in Hollywood about putting Hot Curl, the statue they designed, in a movie. And they just walked up to me and my friend Linda Bent at The Shack at Windansea and asked if we wanted to ride up with them and audition for ‘Muscle Beach Party.’ And we both got the parts. I remember I was going to court-reporting school, so I was practicing my stenography skills on the set. But I gave that up after that.”