Remember '70s actress Judy Pace? She looks great at 76 and has adult daughter who starred in 'Y&R'
Known as “The Black Barbie” or “The Black Babydoll” thanks to her beauty, Judy Pace proved back in the ‘70s that she was more than just a pretty face. These days she’s still acting, and one of her daughters followed her steps into the entertainment industry.
Judy Pace is one of the most iconic veteran black actresses that are still alive and looking amazing these days. With a career of over five decades in Hollywood, she’s the representation not only of African American beauty, but also of intelligence, talent, and hard work.
After graduating from high school and modeling in several ads for companies such as Pepsi, Johnson & Johnson’s, Polaroid, and more, Judy had the honor of being the youngest girl to earn a spot in the Ebony Fashion Fair runaway.
That’s where she was discovered by director William Castle, who offered her a role in the film “13 Frightened Girls.”
Even though she never saw acting as a possible career path, Judy discovered that she actually had the talent to succeed, so she started to take classes and go to auditions until several television roles started to land at her door.
In an interview with “The Actor’s Choice” a radio show from RMC on Air, two years ago, Judy revealed that even though she was discovered for her looks, back in the day that wasn’t enough to succeed in Hollywood, saying:
“You might be selected as you’re standing in the row and you’re the hot beauty, but you can also be told to go sit down if you don’t bring forward some talent. And being an African-American girl, we had to have additional. You had to sing, dance, act, and do comedy…the whole gamma. We had to do that, you had to go there with a full plate.”
Her role as Vickie Fletcher, the first ever black villainess on television, on the series “Peyton Place,” earned her a place in the fans’ hearts, who she recalls used to stop her in the street to ask her why she was so mean to the main characters of the series, proving what a great job she was doing.
Pace had the novelty of becoming the first dark-skinned beauty in Hollywood, even before the start of the Blaxploitation movement, which the actress prefers to call “the black film renaissance.”
The film “Cottom Comes to Harlem” in which she shared credits with Godfrey Cambridge, Raymond St. Jacques, and Redd Foxx, became the first blockbuster film with an all-black cast to enter the ten top films of the year, assuring the start of the “the black film renaissance.”
On a personal note, Judy married actor Don Mitchell in 1972. He was known for his role on the series “Ironside,” and they became the first black power couple in the industry. Together, they had two daughters, Julia and Shawn. Following her parents’ steps, Julia became an actress too.
Julia co-starred in 2009 biopic, “Notorious,” about rapper Biggie Smalls, and she’s also known for her role as Sofia Dupre on the CBS soap opera “The Young and the Restless.”
At age 76, Judy still looks amazing. Her last appearance on television was as Delores in the series “Beauty and the Baller” last year, where she stunned the audience with her poised and regal beauty and her incredible talent.
You can watch Judy’s interview with “The Actor’s Choice” below, she gives an amazing insight into the Hollywood of the ‘60s and her entire career.