Who Is Lana Clarkson?

Photo: Instagram 
Who Is Lana Clarkson

Get the details behind this infamous case.

It's a tale as old as time: a young, pretty blonde starts auditioning in Hollywood in the hopes of making it big. Sometimes the ending is a happy one, other times, it's not. Even rare still are the versions of the story that end in total heartbreak, devastation, and murder. When actress and model Lana Clarkson starting acting in big-budget Hollywood movies in the beginning of the 1980s, it seemed like the entire world was her oyster. The leggy blonde was turning heads, and before she knew it, she had fans of her own following her every move. 

But fate is a cruel and fickle mistress, and just like that, fame vanished and left Lana Clarkson wondering what her next chapter could possibly hold. She made one mistake, trusted one man in Hollywood she should've ignored, and it didn't end in an awkward fumble... it ended in murder. You might be wondering, "who is Lana Clarkson," and with good reason: Phil Spector took her from this world before she had the chance to show us what she was really made of. Now, just after the 16th anniversary of her murder, let's revisit Lana's life and get to know the woman behind the famous crime scene. 

RELATED: Who Is Amy Murray? New Details About The Woman Accused Of Murdering Her Husband To Be With Her Jailbird Boyfriend

1. A Rising 1980s Star

 

Missing you my Beautiful Friend

A post shared by Nili (@nilihudson) on Feb 3, 2019 at 2:21pm PST

Born in 1962, Lana Clarkson was your not-so-average California girl. The gregarious, beautiful, and talented actress was California born and raised, and so it didn't come as a surprise to anyone when she decided to dip her toe into the entertainment world, starting off as a model and then trying her hand in Hollywood. 

In 1982 she made her very first appearance in a motion picture, and this wasn't one that anyone would forget anytime soon. She appeared, albeit it in a non-speaking role, in "Fast Times At Ridgemont High." While she didn't exactly have a lot to do, she still made Hollywood sit up and take notice. It was her work in this film that got her the chance to appear in "Scarface," dancing her heart out on the dance floor right along the film's star, Michelle Pfeiffer. 

2. Finding Fame With Roger Corman 

It was in her work with the legendary director Roger Corman that Lana finally gained the fame that she sought. While Corman's sword-and-sorcery films weren't considered high art, they had a serious following, and for Corman, Lana was something of a muse. She appeared in 5 of his films, perhaps most notably in the film Barbarian Queen which she described as being the "Original Xena." 

Her work in these cult classics earned her a serious following, which meant that she traveled the world visiting with fans and appearing at all of the major science fiction and fantasy conventions. While she appreciated all of the acclaim and the chance to travel, she was disappointed that working with Corman in these films negatively impacted her career. In starring in these films, she had effectively destroyed any chance she may have had of becoming a mainstream Hollywood star. 

3. After Acting 

When Lana hit her 30s, she was no longer in demand even by the B-movie fans who once adored her, but she was a smart lady and she took the business into her own hands, starting her own website where she sold autographs and other memorabilia. She also filled the empty hours by volunteering and was really active in the AIDS awareness groups in the Los Angeles area. 

Lana had plans to return to show business, but this time she didn't want to be the buxom blonde, she wanted to be a stand-up comedian. In order to make a living while she honed her newly formed craft, she took a job working as a waitress at the House of Blues. 

RELATED: Where Is Rose Bundy Now? New Details About Serial Killer Ted Bundy's Daughter

4. Phil Spector Was Found Guilty Of Her Murder 

While working at the House of Blues, Lana met celebrity producer Phil Spector one evening and, on his invitation, came home with him when her shift was over. 

At the age of just 40, Lana was found dead of a gunshot wound inside of Spector's home. While Spector denied any involvement in the crime, claiming that Lana killed herself by "kissing the gun," he was arrested. 

Infamous music producer Phil Spector was eventually found guilty of Lana's murder. Spector, age 79, is currently serving a 19-years-to-life prison sentence for the crime. He will be eligible for parole in 2028. 

5. The House Where She Died Is Now For Sale 

If you're into true crime or you're just looking to drop a serious chunk of change on a massive house with a dark history, you're in luck. 

The Alhambra mansion where Spector killed Clarkson, known as ‘Pyrenees Castle,’ just went on sale... a month after the 16th anniversary of the actress's death. Yikes. 

The house is nothing to sneeze at: It's 8,700 square feet and has nine bedrooms, seven full bathrooms, three half bathrooms, two home offices, TWO FULL WORKING KITCHENS, a recording studio (naturally), a hair salon and a butler’s pantry, and you know, a whole other wing for guests. 

The asking price for all this and potentially some seriously ghostly activity? Spector wants $5.5 million for the place, and he's in position to get into a bidding war since he's hoping to shed this property as part of his divorce settlement with his third wife, Rachelle. 

RELATED: Who Is Diana Weiner? New Details On Ted Bundy's Lawyer And Final Love Interest

Sign Up for the YourTango Newsletter

Let's make this a regular thing!

Rebecca Jane Stokes is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York with her cats, Batman and Margot. Her work focuses on relationships, pop culture and news. For more of her work, check out her Tumblr