Where is the Original True Grit Girl Today?

Where is the Original True Grit Girl Today?

True Grit has a lot to live up to. The original movie earned John Wayne an Oscar®.

And who could forget the other character, True Grit herself, Mattie Ross.

It was an iconic performance that made actress Kim Darby an overnight sensation. But that was 40 years ago. So whatever happened to the original True Grit girl?

"I'm still here," says Darby.

Life has not been easy for Kim Darby. The instant fame the movie brought was also a curse.

"It really came on quickly and it came on strong, so I was a little undone," said Darby.

Darby was just 20-years-old when True Grit took the nation by storm. In the years that followed, her career fizzled and she became addicted to methamphetamines. She also had five failed marriages. She made ends meet by teaching drama at UCLA.

The new Mattie Ross is 14-year-old newcomer Hailee Steinfeld. She made her red carpet debut at last night's premiere in New York, with her all star castmates, including Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon.

Steinfeld beat out 15,000 girls who auditioned for the coveted role, and Kim Darby approves the choice.

"She's extraordinary to look at. They picked a perfect Mattie," said Darby.

Darby says there's a special bond between the True Grit girls of yesterday and today, saying, "We have experienced the same person."