Melinda Wilson, who saved her future husband, Beach Boys co-founder Brian Wilson, from psychological ruin when they were dating in the 1980s, died Tuesday. She was 77 years old.
Mr. Wilson She confirmed her death on Instagram saying they have been married for 28 years. No cause of death was given.
Ms. Wilson died suddenly at her home in Beverly Hills, California, said Gene Sievers, Mr. Wilson's manager. She added that the couple have five adopted children — Dakota Rose, Daria Rose, Dash, Dylan and Delaney Rae — all of whom she represents and carries the title of Mr. Wilson.
The couple's relationship was depicted in the 2014 biographical film “Love & Mercy.” The film shows Mrs. Wilson (Elizabeth Banks) meeting Mr. Wilson, played by John Cusack and Paul Dano, at the Cadillac showroom in Los Angeles where she worked As a saleswoman.
After the film's release, Ms. Banks He said in an interview with ABC News She met Ms. Wilson while preparing for the role.
“She said, ‘Music is his first love,’” Ms. Banks told ABC. “Nothing can replace it.” It is his being, it is his essence, it is his everything. So I'm settling for second place, but it's very good – it's a very good second.'”
The film shows Ms. Wilson helping her then-boyfriend overcome a bout with mental illness in the 1980s. These efforts and their courtship are complicated by the presence of Eugene Landy (Paul Giamatti), a psychologist who helped Mr. Wilson battle depression and drug abuse to return to the professional world.
Mr. Landy, whose team of professional attendants at one time lived with Mr. Wilson 24 hours a day, inserted himself into the musician's life to the point that the therapist at one time served as Mr. Wilson's business partner, record producer and producer. Occasional songwriting partner.
In 1992, a lawsuit filed by Mr. Wilson's family resulted in a court order prohibiting Mr. Landy from contacting Mr. Wilson. Mr. Landy died in 2006.
Melinda Kay Ledbetter was born on October 3, 1946, in Pueblo, Colorado, and grew up in Whittier, California, and went to college there before becoming a model, Ms. Sievers said.
She also served as a producer on several films related to her husband's music, including Brian Wilson: The Long Promised Road (2021) and Pet Sounds Live at Royce Hall (2006). The latter title refers to Pet Sounds, a landmark 1966 Beach Boys album.
When the couple watched “Love & Mercy” for the first time, Ms. Wilson told ABC News, she had no idea how difficult the experience would be.
“I think I was more nervous than him when I took him to see him, and then I said, 'So what do you think?'” she said. “And he says, 'Oh, it was much worse in real life.'
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