Today, October 30th, This Day in Twilight Zone History celebrates the birth of actress Claire Griswold (1936-2010), who portrayed Alice, the doll who comes to life for Charley Parkes (Robert Duvall) in "Miniature."
Some actors came to The Twilight Zone with huge resumés from live television, and many went on to big-screen glory. Others were given key parts on the show and that was pretty much it. Claire Griswold retired from acting after she married director Sydney Pollack and raised their three children.
Claire made a wonderful TZ debut as the little wooden doll who plays the piano in a miniature Victorian house display that's visited every day by a lonely square peg named Charley Parkes. The doll has no dialogue that we can hear (she could be a character in a silent movie) but she has great presence and Charley is mesmerized by her beauty and grace.
"Miniature" is one of the Season 4 one-hour episodes and, as I've been mentioning, it proves the point that these hours are truly delightful and underrated. Writer Charles Beaumont, who next to Rod Serling was the most prolific TZ writer, took his time to introduce Charley and the humdrum world in which he lives; his forays into the museum are handled charmingly by director Walter Grauman, with Robert Duvall bringing a Boo Radley-like gentle persona to the dance.
Let us celebrate Claire and her brief time in the TV spotlight. She is another pearl in the vast creative jewel box we call The Twilight Zone.