Today, “The Exorcist” is considered a cult classic. The film’s themes of Catholicism as well as demonic possession caused controversy at the release. Linda Blair’s young age didn’t shield her from the resulting media storm, with the teenager regularly receiving death threats and being accused of “glorifying Satan” (as per OWN).
Blair was somewhat stereotypical in the film. She struggled to find parts that did not portray her as helpless victim or brought back her horror character. She eventually reprised her role as Regan in 1977’s sequel “Exorcist II: The Heretic” — though it failed to match the critical and commercial success of the original.
The “Hidden Faces” actor also struggled with substance abuse, culminating in an arrest on drug charges at age 18 (per The New York Times), just a few years after her major breakthrough role. Blair did not suffer the same tragic fate that many of her child stars. Check out the rest of Blair’s activities.