|Name:||Lynda Jean Cordova Carter|
|Born:||July 24, 1951|
|Occupation:||actress, singer, songwriter|
|Known for:||portraying Wonder Woman|
Carter was born in Phoenix, Arizona, the daughter of Juana (nee Cordova) and Colby Carter. Her father had English and Irish ancestry. and her mother was of Spanish and Mexican descent. Cater made her television debut on Lew King's Talent Show at age 5. During High School, Carter performed in a band called Just Us consisting of a marimba, a conga drum, an acoustic guitar, and a stand-up bass played by another girl. When she was 17, she joined two of her cousins in another band called The Relatives. Actor Gary Burghoff was the drummer. The group opened at the Sahara Hotel and Casino lounge in Las Vegas for three months; because Carter was under 21, she had to enter through the kitchen.
Carter attended Arizona State University, After being voted "Most Talented", she dropped out to pursue a career in music. In 1970, Carter sang with The Garfin Gathering. Their first performance was in a San Francisco hotel so new that it had no sidewalk entrance. Consequently, the played mostly to the janitors and hotel guests who parked their cars in the underground garage. She retuned to Arizona in 1972.
In 1972, Carter entered a local beauty contest (which she won) and gained national attention in the United States by winning Miss World USA, representing Arizona. In the International 1972 Miss World pageant, representing the U.S., she reached the semi-finals. after taking acting classes at several New York acting schools, she began making appearances on such TV shows as Starsky & Hutch, Cos and Nakia and in several "B-Movies".
Carter's acting career took off when she landed the starring role in The New Adventures of Wonder Woman as the title character and her secret identity, Diana Prince. The savings her parents set aside for her to pursue acting in Los Angeles were almost depleted and Carter was close to returning to Arizona when her manager informed her that she had work the part. Her earnest performance endeared her to fans and critics, such as Carter continues to be closely identified with Wonder Woman.
The series lasted for three seasons. As it was winding down, while referring to the feedback she had received from her posters, Carter told US magazine:
"I never meant to be a sexual object for anyone but my husband. I never though a picture of my body would be tacked up in men's bathrooms. I hate men looking at me and thinking what they think. And I know what they think. They write and tell me."
She was also upset with some of the marketing of her image. Warner Bros. worked out a deal with the toy company Mego, to create a Wonder Woman doll while the series is still on the air. In 1987 on The Late Show with Joan Rivers Carter commented:
"I think that your familiar with the problem in Hollywood, and that is that they market you, and they use you. They did a mask of my face and put it on the doll, and they put my name on for the first run of it. And they took my name off and said they don't have to pay me anymore. So it's the kind of thing that you can be used so much in this industry. I make nothing. I don't even make anything for the reruns. Don't ever settle for net profits. It's called creative accounting."
In 1985, DC Comics named her as one of the honorees in the company's 50th anniversary publication Fifty who made DC Great for her work on the Wonder Woman series. In 2007, to company DC Direct released a 13" full-figure statue of Wonder Woman, limited to 5,000 pieces, it was re-released in 2010. Also in 2010, DC Direct began selling a 5 1/2-inch bust of Carter's Wonder Woman to celebrate their 75th Anniversary.
In 1978, Carter was voted "The Most Beautiful Woman in the World" by the International Academy of Beauty and The British Press Organization. During the late 1970s, Carter recorded an album, Portrait. Carter is credited as a co-writer on several songs and she made numerous guest appearances on variety television programs at the time in a musical capacity. She also sang two of her songs in a 1979 Wonder Woman episode, Amazon Hot Wax. In 1977, Carter released a promotional poster through Pro Arts Inc. at the suggestion of her then husband and manager, Ron Samuels. The poster's was very successful despite Carter's dissatisfaction with it. In 1981, during an interview on the NBC television special Women Who Rate a 10, she said:
"It's uncomfortable because I just simply took a photograph. That's all my participation was in my poster that sold over a million copies was that I took a photograph that I thought was a dumb photograph. My husband said, "Oh try this thing tied up here, it'll look beautiful". And the photographer said "the back-lighting is really terrific". So dealing with someone having that picture up in their...bedroom of their...living room of whatever I think would be hard for anyone to deal with."
In 1979's Apocalypse Now, She was originally was cast in the role of Playboy Playmate Bunny, but the filming of her scenes were interrupted by the famous storm that wrecked the theater set, prompting nearly two months' delay for rebuilding. By the time Coppola was ready to shoot again, Carter's contractual obligation's to Wonder Woman forced her back to the states and her scenes we're re-shot with Colleen Camp. The only evidence remaining of Carter's involvements are the Playboy centerfolds that were specially shot by the magazine as movie props. At one point in the Redux version of Apocalypse Now, a glimpse of Carter's pinup is visible, as the only nude work ascribed as the outside of Bobbie Jo and the Outlaw.
Carter also made an appearance on The Muppet Show, but did not appear as her iconic character or display the superpowers in this episode. However, Miss Piggy portrayed "Wonder Pig" (a spoof of her television persona).
Her other credits include the title role in a biopic of actress Rita Hayworth titled as Rita Hayworth: The Love Goddess (1983) and a variety of her own musical TV specials: Lynda Carter's Special (1980), Encore! (1980), Celebration(1981), Street Life (1982) and Body and Soul (1984). Carter never returned to her role of Wonder Woman for television films or theatrical films throughout the 1980s due to becoming a celebrity promotional model for Maybelline cosmetics and starring in the crime drama television series, Partners in Crime with Loni Anderson. Throughout the 1990s, Carter appeared in a string of television movies that resulted in a resurgence in television appearances. Also, because of the re-syndication of Wonder Woman on such cable networks as FX and SyFy, Carter participated in two scheduled online chat sessions with fans. It was around that time that Carter created her own production company , Potomac Productions. Throughout the 1990s, she also appeared in commercials for Lens Express (now 1-800 Contacts). In 1993, Carter expanded her performance resume included voiceover work as the narrator for Sandra Brown book Where's There's Smoke.
In 2000, Carter hosted I Love 1978 episode of BBC2's I Love the '70s. The following year she was cast in the independent comedy Super Troopers as Vermont Governor Jessman. The writers and stars of the film, the comedy troupe Broken Lizard with Jay Chandrasekhar directing, had specifically sought Carter for the role. Inspired by the character detour from her usual roles, she agreed to play a washed-up, former beauty queen in The Creature of the Sunny Side Up Trailer Park (2004) directed by Christopher Coppola. She won a award for being the "Superest Superhero" on the Second Annual TV Land Awards that same year, When an announcer reported about an invisible plane being double-parked illegally and needed to be relocated before it is towed, she performed her spinning transformation once again after twenty-five years. A younger actress wore the star-spangled outfit at that moment. Carter made her first appearance in a major feature film in a number of years in the bog-screen remake of The Dukes of Hazzard (2005) also directed by Chandrasekhar. She also appeared in the comedy Sky High (2005) as Principal Powers, the head school for superheroes. The script allowed Carter to poke fun at her most famous character when she states: "I can't do anything more to help you. I'm not Wonder Woman, y'know". She did not wear glasses like her Diana Prince persona. In 2006, she guest-starred in the made-for-cable vampire film Slayer. That following year, Carter returned to the DC Comics' television world Smallville episode "Progency" (2007), playing Chloe Sullivan's Kryptonite-empowered mother.
Carter expanded her voice-over work to include video games, performing voices for the nord and osimer (orc) females in two computer games of The Elder Scrolls series, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. These games were developed by Bethesda Softworks; her husband businessman Robert A. Altman is Chairman and CEO of Bethesda's parent company, ZeniMax Media.
From September to November 2005, Carter played Mama Morton in the West End London production of Chicago. In 2006, her rendition of When You're Good to Mama was officially released on the Chicago: 10th Anniversary Edition CD box set. In May 2007, Carter began touring the U.S. with her one-woman musical cabaret show, An Evening with Lynda Carter. She has played engagements at such at such venues as Feinstein's at Lowell's Regency in New York, Jazz at Lincoln Center, The Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., the Plush Room in San Francisco and The Catalina Jazz Club in Los Angeles. In June 2009, her second album, At Last was released and reached #10 on Billboard's Jazz Album Charts. In June 2011, Carter released her third album, Crazy Little Thing which she described as a delightful mix of standards, country, and pop tunes.
Carter is among the interview subjects in Superheroes: A Never-Ending Battle, a three-hour documentary narrated by Liev Schreiber that premiered on PBS in October 2013.
Among game shows Carter has appeared on Break the Bank (1976), Hollywood Squares, Win, Lose or Draw and the reality show RuPaul's Drag U in 2011.
Carter has been married twice. Her first marriage was to her former talent agent, Ron Samuels from 1977 until 1982. In January 1984 Carter married Washington D.C., attorney Robert A. Altman, law partner of Clark Clifford (and now CEO of niMax Media). Carter and her husband have two children: James (born 1988) and Jessica (born 1990) and lived in Potomac, Maryland.
In 1992, after a lengthy and highly publicized jury trail stemming from his involvement with the Bank of Credit of Commerce International, Carter's husband was acquitted. Carter was seen on the TV news with her arm around him, shouting "Not Guilty!, Not Guilty!" to the gathered reporters.
In 2003, Carter revealed that her mother had suffered from Irritable bowel movements for over 30 years, resulting in Carter touring the country as an advocate spokeswoman. Lynda is also a staunch advocate and supporter of Susan G. Korman for the Cure, Pro-Choice rights for women and legal equally for LGBT people. She was the Grand Marshall for the 2011 Phoenix Pride & 2011 New York Pride Parades as well as the 2013 Capital Pride Parade in Washington D.C.
In early June 2008, while rowing out of the Potomac Boat Club, Carter spotted a body floating in the Potomac River. She called out to some fisherman and waited for the police to arrive. Carter stated that she did what anyone would have done.
Later in June 2008 Carter admitted in an interview to People magazine that she had entered a rehabilitation clinic for treatment of alcoholism and had been sober for 10 years. In a statement when asked what the recovery process had taught her, Carter explained that the best measure of a human being is "how we treat people who love us, and the people that we love".
Her mother Juana (Jean) Cordova Carter died as a result of Alzheimer's disease on February 18, 2013 at age 89.
She is 5'-8" tall, although many people think she is closer to 6'-0" tall as Wonder Woman was an Amazon. "I guess they think I'm an Amazon because I play one on TV" she said.
RuPaul's Drag U (2011)