WHY I LOVE … Dora, my 1955 Dodge Royal Lancer, by Lily Tom­lin


InStyle (USA) - - Directory - by LILY TOM­LIN

I’ve al­ways loved old cars. When I was grow­ing up in Detroit, our idea of a fab­u­lous date was walk­ing down to the Gen­eral Mo­tors build­ing to see the Cadil­lacs. So in 1975, when I found my­self need­ing a car, I knew I wanted a cool, old one that I could drive around and re­ally en­joy. I was in the stu­dio work­ing on a com­edy al­bum with Jane Wag­ner at the time, and be­tween takes I’d flip through the news­pa­per to look at the cars. This Dodge Royal Lancer caught my eye, so I went over to the owner’s house and im­me­di­ately fell in love. I paid $1,500 for it and named it Dora Ban­nis­ter af­ter a char­ac­ter in Wicked Woman, a movie that was show­ing when I worked as an ush­erette at the Avalon The­atre. Dora was so gor­geous that I drove her ev­ery­where. I would yell out, “Go fire up, Dora! We’re tak­ing off in 20!” She and I have been through a lot over the years, and I’ll never get rid of her. I’m gonna be buried in this car. At one point her brakes didn’t work so well any­more, and I gave her a rest pe­riod. But thank God I kept her, be­cause when I signed on to do the movie Grandma in 2015, our di­rec­tor Paul Weitz was look­ing for an old car for my char­ac­ter to drive. Dora was per­fect. It also hap­pened to be 40 years since I had bought her, so it was a birth­day of sorts. She was true-blue the whole way through—a to­tal star. Now when I drive her here and there, to the bak­ery or the store, I get waved at a lot. But I know it’s Dora they’re flirt­ing with, not me.

Tom­lin stars in the fifth sea­son of Grace and Frankie, pre­mier­ing Jan­uar y 18 on Net flix.

In the 2015 film Grandma

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