HOLLYWOOD — Apr. 25, 2019 — Lucille Ball “did not set out to become anyone’s icon or influencer,” said Kate Luckinbill-Conner, daughter of singer/actress Lucie Arnaz, granddaughter of Lucille Ball, and head of Creative Direction for new business, new products, and social media for Desilu, too LLC. “She always did her homework, studied her lines, and showed up ready to do the work.
“That is the legacy she left women: show up, do the work, be the best, don’t take no for an answer. That way, no one can ignore you.”
To reignite the legacy of Lucy, Luckinbill-Conner, along with Arnaz and CBS, have launched The Lucy Legacy, a new project that aims “to bring Lucy, Desi and the whole crew into the present,” while also underscoring who Ball was as a person and why she remains an important figure beyond her contributions to television. Fans are invited to not just follow news about The Lucy Legacy on Facebook and Instagram, but participate in the project as well.
Luckinbill-Conner made the announcement on Wednesday, Apr. 24 at the Hollywood Museum, as part of a gala event commemorating the 30th anniversary of Ball’s passing. “We want people to remember what class meant,” she continued. “We want fans to share their stories of love and positivity…. We don’t want to get stuck in nostalgia. We just want a reminder that you—we—can be better. Join us on Facebook and Instagram, and keep an eye out for products that we feel are more representative than just a conveyor belt of chocolates and a funny face. Experiences that represent the impact of generations on not just one, but three, generations of Americans.”
Luckinbill-Conner’s announcement was the highlight of an evening that formally unveiled Remembering Lucy, a new lobby exhibit at The Hollywood Museum that includes an amazing display of costumes, gowns, jewelry, props and other items from the life and career of Lucille Ball.
Lucie Arnaz, Ball’s daughter and Luckinbill-Conner’s mother, could not attend last night’s unveiling because of a schedule conflict (she was performing in Palm Springs at a One Night Only tribute to Andrew Lloyd Webber). Arnaz, however, taped a message, which Luckinbill-Conner played at the Hollywood Museum event: “How grateful we are all that the entire world has embraced this little dream that Mom and Dad had, to create a live-audience, three-camera filmed television series, just so that they could stay together here in California in the hopes of starting a family. God knows I’m grateful for that little plan! But that brave manifestation of desire worked out so much better than anyone could have predicted. Congratulations, Mom, you are the gift that keeps on giving.”
Other speakers at the Remembering Lucy unveiling included actor Barry Livingston (My Three Sons, Jersey Boys), who shared a memory about working with Ball on The Lucy Show; Ball’s longtime publicist Tom Watson; author Michael Stern (I Had a Ball: My Friendship with Lucy); showbiz historian Geoffrey Mark, author of The Lucy Book; and Donelle Dadigan, founder and president of the Hollywood Museum. Other celebrities in attendance included Kathy Garver (Family Affair), Susan Olsen (The Brady Bunch), Kate Linder (The Young and the Restless), Melody Thomas-Scott (The Young and the Restless), Bob Bergen (the voice of Porky Pig), Barbara van Orden (LA’s Next Big Stage Star), and comedienne Judy Tenuta.