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|Born||September 26, 1953|
|Died||June 15, 1979
New York City, New York
|Other names||Lauri Bird|
|Occupation||Film actor, photographer|
Life and career
Bird's mother died when she was three. Her father, an electrical engineer, was a former sailor in the United States Navy, and worked long hours. Although she had two brothers, she more or less raised herself.
Described by Hollywood columnist Dick Kleiner as "look[ing] like an innocent Hayley Mills", Bird appeared in just three films: Two-Lane Blacktop (1971), Cockfighter (1974), and a small role in Annie Hall (1977). (Archival footage of the actress in Two-Lane Blacktop is featured in the 2006 documentary Wanderlust.) Bird was the still photographer on Cockfighter, and shot the cover photo for Art Garfunkel's 1977 album Watermark. She was romantically involved with her Blacktop and Cockfighter director Monte Hellman, and later with Garfunkel for several years.
In 1979 Bird committed suicide by taking an overdose of Valium in the apartment she shared with Garfunkel in New York. At Bird's funeral, her father revealed that her mother's death, previously reported as being from ovarian cancer, was also a suicide. Garfunkel referred to his relationship with Bird in the liner notes of his 1988 album Lefty.
Tim Kinsella's novel Let Go and Go On and On (2014) is subtitled "Based on the roles of Laurie Bird." In the foreword he writes, "This book by no means intends to convey any truth beyond one possible solution to the puzzles of her life and work."
- Kleiner, Dick (August 17, 1971). "Pretty Bird Laurie Flew Away, but Her Sad Life Led to Film Role". The Milwaukee Journal. Newspaper Enterprise Association. Retrieved September 10, 2011.
- Michael Atkinson - Exile Cinema: Filmmakers at Work Beyond Hollywood
- Kinsella, Tim (2014). Let Go and Go On and On. Chicago, Illinois: Curbside Splendor Publishing. p. 11. ISBN 978-1-940430-01-0.
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