Linda Blair, child star of the movie “The Exorcist,” is putting her star power to good use to help needy animals. Blair is a longtime advocate for animals and was at the Indianapolis Humane Society on Friday, according to WISH TV of Indianapolis.
“What happened really in the last 17 years is that the pet overpopulation became so overwhelming,” Blair told the TV station. Linda has done work across the U.S. to help animals, and runs one of the biggest animal shelters in the country, with over 100 dogs. It was after Hurricane Katrina that she started doing even more, though.
“Because I had taken responsibility for so many of the animals down there,” said Blair, whose shelter is part of the Linda Blair Worldheart Foundation. “And I bought a property.”
Linda also travels around the country to make appearances related to her work to help animals, including her stop in Indianapolis. Two of the key issues she advocates for is that there is help if people with pets can’t afford to spay or neuter their pets or are struggling to raise them.
Blair gained enduring fame for her 1973 role in “The Exorcist,” which had commercial success and critical acclaim. She was nominated for an Oscar and won a Golden Globe, and the movie was also a blockbuster. She was only 13 when the film started shooting, and turned 14 during filming.
Her success with “The Exorcist” as Reagan, a possessed child, has allowed her to go on and do charity work such as advocating for humane treatment of animals.
“I feel really lucky that I was part of such an enormous and impactful film and can do something positive and help America to make this a better place,” said Linda.
“On the weekends I would go home and see my animals, I wanted to be a veterinarian,” said Blair during an interview with Indianapolis FOX affiliate, FOX59. “I was saving my money for vet school. I haven’t changed much.”
She has continued to act, including films such as “Airport 75,” and “Love Boat” and “Roller Boogie.”
“I worked until I was about 24, and then the whole film business changed,” said Blair, who said the big movies with men headlining such as Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone made it harder for women to get great leading roles.
That change made her reconsider her work in acting and think about what she wanted to do with her life and career in the long-term. Ever since, Linda Blair has been working to help animals, including her recent appearance at the Indianapolis Horror Hound show and with the Humane Society.