Kelly as Pinky Tuscadero with Henry Winkler as Fonzie, 1976.
July 29, 1943 |
Mount Vernon, New York, U.S.
Roz Kelly (born July 29, 1943) is an American actress, perhaps best known for playing Arthur "Fonzie" Fonzarelli's (Henry Winkler) girlfriend Carol "Pinky" Tuscadero on the hit television series Happy Days.
Before Happy Days, Roz Kelly worked as a staff photographer for New York Magazine, where she took pictures of both unknowns and celebrities, including Jimi Hendrix, Soupy Sales, Andy Warhol, Cream, Leonard Cohen, Neil Diamond and photographer Diane Arbus.
On Happy Days, Kelly played Carol "Pinky" Tuscadero, the older sister of Leather Tuscadero (singer Suzi Quatro) who also dated Fonzie in a later episode. Just as Arthur Fonzarelli insisted on being called "Fonzie" or "the Fonz", Carol insisted on being called "Pinky", and usually dressed in attire to match. Pinky was slated to be Fonzie's long-term girlfriend after her initial appearances in episodes #64–66; commercials for the next season even began promoting Kelly's new character. When discord occurred among Kelly, the cast and producers, her character was dropped; she was only mentioned briefly in two later episodes.
Beyond Happy Days, Kelly reprised her Pinky role on the first episode of the short-lived 1977 Happy Days spin-off, Blansky's Beauties. Kelly also played guest roles on Starsky and Hutch, Match Game '76, The Paul Lynde Halloween Special, Baretta, Kojak, The Love Boat, The Dukes of Hazzard, Charlie's Angels and Fantasy Island). Her role in Starsky and Hutch was created when star Paul Michael Glaser (Starsky) planned to quit at the start of the third season, with Kelly's character, Officer Linda Baylor, intended to fill his place. However, Glaser was persuaded to stay, and Kelly's character ultimately only appeared in one episode, Fatal Charm. Her characters on these other shows never reached the level of cult fame that Pinky Tuscadero gave her. So closely identified was she with the character that she was billed as Roz "Pinky Tuscadero" Kelly for her appearance on The Paul Lynde Halloween Special.
Kelly also played roles in low budget movies including The Owl and the Pussycat, Greetings and Full Moon High. These movies were indicative of her career that was based on a lot of potential, but limited exposure due to lack of distribution. Most of these small parts emphasized her body and highly sexual demeanor.
Kelly appeared as a guest of The Jenny Jones Show episode focusing on "Whatever Happened to Your Favorite Television Stars?" along with What's Happening's Danielle Spencer. Kelly was repeatedly asked by Jones to talk about her time with Henry Winkler and the rest of the Happy Days cast; Kelly responded that she was simply a guest character, and had no outside contact with the cast.
On the October 10, 2012, episode of The Howard Stern Show on Sirius XM satellite radio, Winkler said he had problems working with Kelly "because I didn't like her as a person" and that "she didn't know what she was doing." He added that the difficulties extended to the rest of the cast and production team, as "everyone had to work that much harder" because of the difficulties. He said that Kelly is never invited to private Happy Days cast reunions and gatherings.
Kelly was born in Mount Vernon, New York, of half Irish and half Jewish ancestry. Kelly spends her time in upstate New York with her family and friends. Her hobbies include sewing and writing poetry. Although not officially retired from acting, she has not worked in the film industry in over a decade.
On November 29, 1998, she was arrested for firing a 12-gauge shotgun into the living room window of a neighbor's house after a car alarm woke her up; she also shot the neighbor's car and another car nearby. The neighbor was not home at the time. She pleaded no contest to the charge of firing into the house and was sentenced to three years' felony probation on October 20, 2000. Kelly was also ordered to receive psychiatric counseling and pay restitution as ordered by the probation department.
On October 27, 2000, she was sentenced to 120 days in jail after pleading "no contest" to charges stemming from an August 20, 2000, arrest for hitting a man with her cane. She was given credit for the 98 days that she had already spent in jail awaiting sentencing, thus avoiding having to spend any more time in jail.
- McCarthy, Dennis (1995-04-02). "PINKY TUSCADERO FIGHTING FOR ACTORS WITH DISABILITIES". Daily News of Los Angeles. Retrieved 2008-01-01.
- Elkort, Martin. "Roz Kelly: Idyll Hands". Rangefinder magazine. Retrieved 2010-12-04.
- "Roz Kelly photos @ Getty Images". Rangefinder magazine. Retrieved 2010-12-04.
- 'HAPPY DAYS' PINKY CHARGED - Roz Kelly : People.com
- "Probation For 'Happy Days' Star". CBS News. 1999-10-21. Retrieved 2010-12-04.
- Liu, Caitlin (2000-10-27). "Van Nuys Judge Gives 'Happy Days' Actress 120 Days in Jail". L.A. Times. Retrieved 2010-12-04.
- "'Happy Days' vet spared prison trip". City News Service. Retrieved 2010-12-04.