What ‘Exorcist’ Star Linda Blair Considers Her Life’s Calling

The Exorcist Linda Blair
Everett Collection

Before Linda Blair was cast in the role that changed her life forever, she wanted to be a veterinarian. Blair is best known for playing 12-year-old Regan MacNeil, who gets possessed by a demon in the horror film The Exorcist. The role catapulted her into stardom and she became a famous actor.

Before getting the role, Blair began working as a model and doing commercials in hopes of funding veterinarian school one day. While she wasn’t originally looking to become an actor, things happened quickly for her and she ran with it. In her 20s, she said that she went back to her roots and discovered her true calling in life: helping animals, especially dogs in need. She explained, “In my 20s, I said, ‘I really am struggling.’ It was like, for some, a midlife crisis. But, for me, it was my life’s calling, saying, ‘What about me? The animals need help.’ So that’s where I really started buckling down … and I was giving my time and money.”

Exorcist II The Heretic Linda Blair 1977

Everett Collection

In 2003, Blair decided to use her fame, money, and resources to launch her nonprofit organization called The Linda Blair WorldHeart Foundation. The foundation helps rescue and rehabilitate abused or abandoned animals and give them the love they truly deserve. She believes her late mother would be so proud because she inspired a love of animals in her when she was just a young girl.

 Actress Linda Blair at Backstage Creations Treat Suite At FOX's All-Star Dog Rescue Celebration at Barker Hangar on November 21, 2015

Rebecca Sapp/Getty Images for Backstage Creations

Blair shared about the nonprofit, “I think a lot of people in animal welfare need to get more involved so that we can make the changes that are necessary. But that requires funding. We get nothing from the state, nothing from the government. There is no financial aid for the rescue community. Shelters can keep applying for state funding, but not the rescue groups. That’s why I’ve been saying, help in your area, volunteer, foster and adopt. Ask what can you do. You can do a bake sale and bring that money, or you could provide food and blankets as you’re cleaning out your closet.” Blair now does conventions from time to time and donates the money she raises from fans back to her foundation.

Visit The Linda Blair WorldHeart Foundation to learn more about how to volunteer, adopt, or donate to help animals through the foundation.

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