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'Bridey Murphy' Comes Back to Visit 'Audrey Rose'

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In 1952 Virginia Tighe, a 33-year-old Colorado housewife, was hypnotized by a friend. While she was under hypnosis, Bridey Murphy emerged. A totally different personality who spoke with an Irish brogue, Bridey described her life in Ireland in the early 1800s. The Search for Bridey Murphy, a book based on 17 taped sessions, became a best-seller in 1956.

Ginni Tighe found herself inundated with show business offers—including one to re-create her sessions under hypnosis on TV’s Colgate Comedy Hour. Her children were followed home from school by enterprising promoters, and the Tighes had their phone number changed 13 times in three months.

Ginni turned all the offers down. “The whole purpose of the book was to present a scientific case for reincarnation,” she says. “I would rather have my feet on the ground today than to have been a Hollywood celebrity for six weeks.”

Now Ginni, 51, has finally gone to Hollywood as the guest of Frank De Felitta, author and co-producer of the film version of his book Audrey Rose. It is a story of reincarnation involving a young girl. Ginni supervised the film’s chilling scenes in which the girl regresses to her previous life.

Bridey Murphy was also made into a movie in 1956, for which Ginni received $6,000. She was paid $10,000 for the book, plus a small percentage of paperback sales, from which she still gets about $200 a year. Her trip to L.A. was paid for by De Felitta and included a week in the plush Beverly Wilshire for Ginni and her second husband, Dick Morrow. “We wanted her to bless the movie,” De Felitta explains.

Ginni, still a believer in reincarnation, jokes about her next life, “I’ve already got the fella picked out—Cary Grant.” And who would she like to be? “Zsa Zsa Gabor. I want to come back as somebody very glamorous.”