She was then cast in Kazan's Splendor in the Grass (1961) with Warren Beatty. No one was injured, but cocaine and heroin were found in Courtney’s possession. To this day, there are still many questions and few answers when it comes to the death of legendary actress Natalie Wood, who mysteriously drowned off the coast of … She was scheduled to make her stage debut on February 12, 1982 in Anastasia at Ahmanson Theatre with Wendy Hiller. In his memoir Pieces of My Heart, Wagner admitted that he had an argument with Wood before she disappeared. It has never been explained why Walken's wife. , Wood's two marriages to actor Robert Wagner were highly publicized. After Natalia started acting as a child, David Lewis and William Goetz, studio executives at RKO Radio Pictures, changed her name to Natalie Wood, in reference to director Sam Wood.. Natalie Wood: Splendid Splinter  Forensic pathologist Michael Hunter speculated that Wood was particularly susceptible to bruising because she had taken the drug Synthroid. But beneath the glamour was an ugly secret: She suffered through a violent affair, packed with anguish, despair and fear that drove her to attempt suicide. Join / Sign Up Keep track of your favorite shows and movies, across all your devices. Wood's father opposed the idea, but his wife's "overpowering ambition to make Natalie a star" took priority. Daughter of Natalie Wood says stepdad Robert Wagner did not kill actress. Wagner is the proud father of two adult children. Film historian John C. Tibbetts wrote that for the next few years following her success in Miracle, Wood played roles as a daughter in a series of family films: Driftwood (1947), at Republic; Scudda Hoo! She earned three Oscar nominations by 25 before a tragic accident claimed her life at 43. In the film, Beatty's character was deprived of sexual love with Wood's character, and as a result turns to another, "looser" girl. Her first film role was in 1992’s Father & Sons. At just 16, Natalie Wood was eager to break out of her child star mould, so embarked on an affair with the 44-year-old director Nicholas Ray. Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama, Golden Globe Award for New Star of the Year – Actress, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Natalie_Wood&oldid=1002195531, Actresses from the San Francisco Bay Area, Best Drama Actress Golden Globe (television) winners, Burials at Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery, New Star of the Year (Actress) Golden Globe winners, Russian Orthodox Christians from the United States, Pages containing links to subscription-only content, Short description is different from Wikidata, All Wikipedia articles written in American English, Articles containing Russian-language text, Articles needing additional references from July 2018, All articles needing additional references, Wikipedia articles with BIBSYS identifiers, Wikipedia articles with CANTIC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz identifiers, Wikipedia articles with PLWABN identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SELIBR identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SNAC-ID identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Probable drowning and other undetermined factors, This page was last edited on 23 January 2021, at 07:49. Natalie Wood was born in San Francisco to Russian immigrant parents.  (The material was eventually adapted into a 1990 television film starring Jane Seymour.) It was partly based on the biographies Natasha: the Biography of Natalie Wood by Suzanne Finstad and Natalie & R.J. by Warren G.  Her grandfather was killed in 1918 in a street fight in Vladivostok between Red and White Russian soldiers.  As a teenager, she earned a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in Rebel Without a Cause (1955), followed by a role in John Ford's The Searchers (1956). Golden Girl. She met him when she was 18 and he was 26 on a studio-arranged date. The police stated that they know that Wagner was the last person who was with Wood when she died. Natalie Wood's deeply inappropriate affair. 43-year-old Courtney Brooke Wagner was the troubled star child of Natalie Wood and Robert Wagner. " She adds that a scene in the film, as a result of "Kazan's wizardry ... produced a hysteria in Natalie that may be her most powerful moment as an actress. Wood's best known film as a child was Miracle on 34th Street (1947), starring Maureen O'Hara at Fox. I believed everything my mother told me. It looks like there may be motive after all, according to the National Enquirer. Natalie Wood was a child star who went on to have a very successful adult career.  According to professor Cynthia Lucia, who studied the attack, Wood's rape was quite brutal and violent. 14. Wood starred in some of the most classic movies of all time over the span of four decades, starting from her days as a child actress in the 1940s in The … During the 1970s, she began a hiatus from film and had two children with husband Robert Wagner, whom she married, divorced, and remarried after divorcing her second husband. But the best … In 2013, retired FBI agent Donald Wilson proclaimed that he and Wood had a four-year affair from 1973 to 1977 while she was married to Wagner. , Biographer Suzanne Finstad wrote that a "turning point" in Wood's life as an actress took place when she saw the film A Streetcar Named Desire (1951): "She was transformed, in awe of director Elia Kazan and of Vivien Leigh's performance ... [who] became a role model for Natalie. M-G-M to Finish Natalie Wood Film When she was fifteen years old Natalie was raped by an older actor. But beneath the glamour was an ugly secret: She suffered through a violent affair, packed with anguish, despair and fear that drove her to attempt suicide. Is this really what’s happening?’” Natasha recalled, “They said, ‘Natalie Wood drowned off the coast of Catalina.’”. She is a jewelry designer who has had troubles in her own life.  In 2018, Wagner was named as a person of interest in the ongoing investigation into Wood's death. Their first child together, Courtney was born in 1974. , Natalia's mother, Maria, was born in Barnaul, southern Siberia. ", Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role, Learn how and when to remove this template message, Best Actress – Motion Picture Comedy or Musical, Mar del Plata International Film Festival, "Natalie Wood's death certificate amended", "Second Time's the Charm – Marriage, Natalie Wood, Robert Wagner", "Natalie Wood's Death, Still Shrouded in Mystery – and the Clues That Remain", "Natalie Wood's death certificate changed to reflect new uncertainty", "New Doubts in Natalie Wood's Death: 'I Don't Think She Got in the Water by Herself, "TV Weekend; A Documentary Remembrance of Natalie Wood", "The Story of Natalie Wood Is Also the Story of Her Mother", "Bonhams : A pair of Natalie Wood awards from The Harvard Lampoon and The Harvard Crimson", "Lampoon Fixes Date With Natalie; Wood Will Win 'Worst' on Saturday", "A star that left the firmament too soon", "Natalie Wood's sister Lana claims star was raped, reveals details of her sibling's final days", "Lana Wood: Natalie Wood was sexually assaulted as a teen", "Natalie Wood death probe yields more unanswered questions", "What Really Happened the Night Natalie Wood Died", "Natalie Wood was too 'terrified' of water to try to leave Robert Wagner on yacht by dinghy", "How The Times covered Natalie Wood's mysterious death in 1981", "Captain: Wagner responsible for Natalie Wood death", "Boat captain alleges actor Robert Wagner responsible for Natalie Wood's death", "Natalie Wood Death: New Audio Recordings Indicate Robert Wagner's Involvement", "Natalie Wood cause of death changed to 'undetermined', deepening mystery", "Authorities amend Natalie Wood's death certificate", "Coroner Releases New Report on Natalie Wood Death", "Robert Wagner Named Person of Interest in Natalie Wood's Death", "Robert Wagner 'Person of interest says investigator", "Police want to quiz Wagner over Wood death", "Robert Wagner's action after Natalie Wood's death 'doesn't make any sense,' detective says", "Lost Star- What Really Happened to Film Goddess Natali Wood", "Natalie Goes Overboard – Wood's Death not the Only Mystery", "Imprint Ceremonies Archive | TCL Chinese Theatres", "Palm Springs Walk of Stars by date dedicated". She had a small but crucial role in John Ford's The Searchers (1956) and was the female lead in A Cry in the Night (1956).  The autopsy report revealed that she had bruises on her body and arms, as well as an abrasion on her left cheek, but no indication as to how or when the injuries occurred. ", She was leading lady to Frank Sinatra in Kings Go Forth (1958) then refused roles and was put on suspension by Warners. After a short-lived romance with future California governor Jerry Brown, Wood resumed her relationship with Wagner at the end of January 1972. How did Natalie Wood die? Wood made two comedies with Tony Curtis: Sex and the Single Girl (1964) and The Great Race (1965), the latter with Jack Lemmon, and Peter Falk. Martin, Betty. Wood sang when she starred in the film Gypsy (1962) alongside Rosalind Russell. Natalia's father was born in Vladivostok into the poor family of Stepan Zakharenko, a chocolate-factory worker who joined the anti-Bolshevik civilian forces during the Russian Civil War.  Through the recollection of Wood's close friends, which included late actors Scott Marlowe and Dennis Hopper, Finstad summarizes: Though her five close friends' memories of some details or timing differ after forty-five years, the essence of what each recalls Natalie confiding to them is the same: that the same married film star lured or tricked Natalie, raped her so brutally she was physically injured, and she was too frightened or intimidated to report it to the police. During the 1970s, Wood began a hiatus from film and had a child with husband Robert Wagner, whom she had previously married and divorced.  Her sister Lana expressed doubts, alleging that Wood could not swim and had been "terrified" of water all her life, and that she would never have left the yacht on her own by dinghy. I still like it when I see it," wrote Kazan.. Director Sydney Pollack was quoted as saying about Wood, "When she was right for the part, there was no one better. She talked about harboring a crush on the actor as a child.  Natalia liked to describe her family as having been either gypsies or landowning aristocrats in Russia. As soon as the teacher let us go, I ran to the set as fast as I could. Despite the brief part, she attracted the notice of the director, Irving Pichel. , At the time of her death, Wood was filming the $15 million science fiction film Brainstorm (1983), co-starring Christopher Walken and directed by Douglas Trumbull..  In all, Wood appeared in over twenty films as a child. “I woke up and I was like: ‘Is this real? , In 2012, Los Angeles County Chief Coroner Lakshmanan Sathyavagiswaran amended Wood's death certificate and changed the cause of death from accidental drowning to "drowning and other undetermined factors". She played a post-World War II German orphan, opposite Orson Welles as Wood's guardian and Claudette Colbert, in Tomorrow Is Forever (1946). "Until then I did what I was told," she said.. Email this article. Natalia and her sisters were raised Russian Orthodox. But Natalie decided, in 1972, … In 1964, at the age of 25, Wood received her third Academy Award nomination for Love with the Proper Stranger (1963), making Wood (along with Teresa Wright) the youngest person to score three Oscar nominations. Jackman contacted Lana Wood that fall to tell her Jackman might have an unpublished autobiography by Natalie. In Last Married Couple, Wood broke ground: although an actress with a clean, middle-class image, she used the "F" word in a frank marital discussion with her husband (George Segal). Sie erreichte in den 1950er- und 1960er-Jahren mit Filmen wie denn sie wissen nicht, was sie tun und West Side Story ihre größte Popularität und wurde unter a… Natalie Wood Still Up for Plum While many young actresses struggle to navigate the transition from child star to teenage ing nue, Wood managed a seamless crossover with 1955’s … Her daughter Courtney was born to her and Robert Wagner. Smith, Cecil. Her mother soon moved the family to Los Angeles in order to pursue a film career for her daughter. West Side Story star, Natalie Wood had a highly publicized relationship with Robert Wagner, who was eight years her senior. She described the day he told her about her mother’s death saying, “My whole world just went to black and white and I couldn’t hear anything.” She said she was lucky to have both her fathers help her through her grief. In between these she made Peeper (1975) with Michael Caine. The film has become a Christmas classic; Wood was counted among the top child stars in Hollywood after the film and was so popular that Macy's invited her to appear in the store's annual Thanksgiving Day parade..  Her former "childlike sweetness" was now being combined with a noticeable "restlessness that was characteristic of the youth of the 1950s. I wanted to find out what human material was there, what her inner life was ... Then she told me she was being psychoanalyzed. She grew up with her half-sister, Courtney and stepsister, Katie. After a "series of bad films, her career was already in decline", according to author Douglas Rathgeb. , Davern had previously stated that Wood and Wagner argued that evening, which Wagner denied at the time. Wagner also had a daughter, Katie with Marion Marshall from their marriage before he reconciled with Wood. Natasha Gregson Wagner was 11 when her mother, the Oscar-nominated actor Natalie Wood, drowned off Catalina Island.  Los Angeles County coroner Thomas Noguchi ruled the cause of her death to be accidental drowning and hypothermia. Poor R.J. [Wagner], I said to myself. (1948); Chicken Every Sunday (1949); The Green Promise (1949); Fred MacMurray's daughter in Father Was a Fullback (1949), with O'Hara; Margaret Sullavan's daughter in No Sad Songs for Me (1950); the youngest sister in Our Very Own (1950); Never a Dull Moment (1950); James Stewart's daughter in The Jackpot (1950); Dear Brat (1951); Joan Blondell's neglected daughter in The Blue Veil (1951); The Rose Bowl Story (1952); and Just for You (1952); the daughter of Bette Davis' character in The Star (1952); . Natalie Wood's Daughter, Natasha, Celebrates Robert Wagner's 90th Birthday with Family Photo Natasha Gregson Wagner describes it as "the first posed family photo we have taken in a couple of decades" Suzanne Finstad's 2001 biography of Wood alleges that she was raped by a powerful actor when she was 16. Scudda Hay! , Natalie Wood was born Natalia Nikolaevna Zakharenko in San Francisco, California, the daughter of Russian immigrant parents Nikolai Stepanovich Zakharenko (1912–1980) and Maria Stepanovna Zakharenko (née Zudilova; 1908–1998). She made a brief cameo appearance as herself in The Candidate (1972), working once more with Robert Redford. In The Great Race, her ability to speak Russian was an asset given to her character Maggie DuBois, justifying the character's recording the progress of the race across Siberia and entering the race at the beginning as a contestant. Wood's sister Lana Wood recalls this period: Her marriage was considered to be one of the best in Hollywood, and there is no question that she was a devoted, loving—even adoring—mother and stepmother. Natalie "hated" her former screen idol afterward, "shuddering" if she heard his name. Natalie was born Natalia Nikolaevna Zakharenko on … Her mother was of Russian heritage and christened her Natalia but affectionately nicknamed her … Wood acted in another film directed by Pichel, The Bride Wore Boots, she went to 20th Century Fox to play Gene Tierney's daughter in The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (1947). Natalie Wood in 'Gypsy' They had overcome each other's problems and had reached an accommodation with time and the changes time brings. , Wood drowned off Catalina Island on November 29, 1981, at age 43, during a holiday break from the production of Brainstorm (1983) with Christopher Walken. Haber, Joyce. His daughter Katherine was born in 1964 –from his second marriage to Marion Marshall. She earned three Oscar nominations by 25 before a tragic accident claimed her life at 43. She was surrounded by Hollywood glamour from the onset as the daughter of film star Natalie Wood and British producer/writer/agent Richard Gregson, who was briefly married to Wood between her two marriages to actor Robert Wagner. She also appeared on television on episodes of Kraft Theatre, Chevron Theatre, Because Wood was a minor during her early years as an actress, she received her primary education on the studio lots wherever she was contracted.  She paid Warner Bros. $175,000 to cancel her contract and fired her entire support team: agents, managers, publicist, accountant, and attorneys. California law required that until age 18, child actors had to spend at least three hours per day in the classroom, notes Harris. By: Caroline John - Published: February 2, 2018 at 6:00 am, Photo: Brenda Chase / Stringer / Getty Images. In the 39 years since, … The couple married sometime in 2015. Natasha Gregson was born on September 29, 1970, in Los Angeles. sfn error: multiple targets (2×): CITEREFWood1984 (. She later said it was the first script she read that she actually wanted to do as opposed to being told to do by her parents; she also said her parents were opposed to her doing it. Wagner talks to Jesse Palmer about the many questions surrounding her mother's death and reveals how she's honoring the late actress' legacy. Interview with Natalie Wood’s daughter, Natasha Gregson Wagner. She spoke about not wanting her mother’s name to be associated with a “so-called ‘junkie daughter.’”, “I was so upset that I had defamed her name,” she confessed, “and I had to look at how I could make this better for my mom and find healthier ways to deal with everything that has happened to me.”. (@Ble6750) July 26, 2017. Their daughter Courtney was born in 1974. ", Wood's mother continued to play a significant role in her daughter's early career, coaching her and micromanaging aspects of her career even after Wood acquired agents. Wood's career was in a transition period, having until then consisted of roles as a child or as a teenager. In 1966, Wood was given the Harvard Lampoon award for being the "Worst Actress of Last Year, This Year, and Next". FACT CHECK: Dave Ramsey Made a Statement About America Online, FACT CHECK: CIA Director Gina Haspel Found Dead, FACT CHECK: Kwik Trip Launches “Kwik Strip” Gentlemen’s Clubs, FACT CHECK: Burisma Admitted to Paying Bribe to Joe Biden. , Tibbetts observed that Wood's characters in Rebel, Searchers, and Morningstar began to show her widening range of acting styles. Natalie Wood’s children had a tough time coming to terms with her death. "She was a straight A student", and one of the few child actors to excel at arithmetic. Outside of drowning, many of the circumstances are unknown; it was never determined how she entered the water. , Wood was buried in Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles. They, however, separated in 1961 followed by a divorce in 1962.  After that, his wife and her three sons fled to their relatives in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Her sister, Natalie Wood, had left her first husband, Robert Wagner, after a marital betrayal, Lana says she told her. Find out about Natalie Wood’s children here. She was exceptionally close to her stepfather. The film was released posthumously on September 30, 1983, and was dedicated to Wood in the closing credits.  Wood would later recall this time, "My mother used to tell me that the cameraman who pointed his lens out at the audience at the end of the Paramount newsreel was taking my picture. " Actor Gary Lockwood, who also performed in the film, felt that "Kazan and Natalie were a terrific marriage, because you had this beautiful girl, and you had somebody that could get things out of her." star, Barry Watson. Accessed November 17, 2016. NATALIE WOOD seemed to have it all – beauty, wealth and famous lovers. " Wood remembered that period in her life, saying, "I always felt guilty when I knew the crew was sitting around waiting for me to finish my three hours.  The amended document included a statement that it is "not clearly established" how Wood ended up in the water. She was the recipient of four Golden Globes, and received three Academy Award nominations. Although she never went to the police she told several friends that her rapist was actor Kirk Douglas. The events surrounding her death have been the subject of conflicting witness statements, prompting the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, under the instruction of the coroner's office, to list her cause of death as "drowning and other undetermined factors" in 2012. Kazan's favorite scene in the film was the last one, when Wood goes back to see her lost first love, Bud (Beatty). Natalie Wood was an iconic actress, but what many may forget is that she was also mom to two daughters.Natalie died in 1981 when they were just little girls, so they've grown up quite a lot since their mother's untimely (and forever mysterious) passing after drowning. , Kazan cast Wood as the female lead in Splendor, and her career rebounded. The new documentary, Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind, dispels rumors that actress Natalie Wood had an affair with her Brainstorm co-star, Christopher Walken. Robert Wagner, Natalie Wood and their children Natasha, center, and Courtney arrive at London airport, July 4, 1976. Harris. They hit off and married the following year in December 1957.  They first married on December 28, 1957 in Scottsdale, Arizona. Natalie Wood is survived by her daughters, Natasha and Courtney Wagner, from her two marriages. She continued to guest star on TV shows like Studio One in Hollywood , Camera Three, Kings Row, Studio 57, Warner Brothers Presents, and The Kaiser Aluminum Hour. She was arrested for drug possession and released after posting a $10,000 bail. She acted in only two feature films throughout the decade, but appeared slightly more often in television productions, including a remake of the film From Here to Eternity (1979) for which she received a Golden Globe Award.  The ending of Brainstorm had to be re-written and Wood's character written out of at least three scenes, while a stand-in and sound-alikes were used to replace Wood for some of her crucial shots. LOS ANGELES (CBS) — CBS2 and KCAL9 have obtained a copy of Natalie Wood’s original autopsy report. Natasha Gregson was 10 months old when her parents, Wood and Gregson separated.  According to Noguchi, Wood had been drinking and she may have slipped while trying to re-board the dinghy. Chicago Daily Tribune f21 Mar 1948: B20. This record was later broken by Jennifer Lawrence in 2013 and Saoirse Ronan in 2017, both of whom scored their third nominations at the age of 23. She guest starred in episodes of Conflict. The studio cast her in two films opposite Tab Hunter, hoping to turn the duo into a box-office draw that never materialized: The Burning Hills (1956), a Western, and The Girl He Left Behind (1956). Unfortunately the beautiful actress was also the victim of a horrific sexual assault. Although Wood's singing in the film was voiced by Marni Nixon, West Side Story is still regarded as one of Wood's best films. Decades after Natalie Wood’s tragic drowning, investigators have reopened her case. Her parents, Maria Stepanovna (Zudilov) and Nikolai Stepanovich Zakharenko, were Russian-born émigrés, of Ukrainian and Russian descent, who spoke barely comprehensible English; they changed the family name to Gurdin after becoming US citizens.  She was the first performer to attend their ceremony and accept an award in person. Later, they moved to San Francisco, where Nikolai worked as a day laborer and carpenter. She divorced him in 1972 and resumed her relationship with Wagner.  With the start of the civil war, his family left Russia, resettling as refugees in the Chinese city of Harbin. Wood played Maria, a restless Puerto Rican girl on the West Side of Manhattan, in West Side Story, Jerome Robbins and Robert Wise's 1961 film of the stage musical, which was a critical and box-office success. Is Ant Clemons Related to Clarence Clemons? Wood's films represented a "coming of age" for her and for Hollywood films in general. Los Angeles Times 5 Dec 1978: f17. , Wood died under mysterious circumstances at age 43 during the making of Brainstorm while on a weekend boat trip to Catalina Island on board Wagner's yacht Splendour. They reportedly went to sleep with a clock radio on and the news of her mother’s death was broadcast as they slept. , In the 1953–54 television season, Wood played Ann Morrison, the teenage daughter in The Pride of the Family, an ABC situation comedy. In the early ’80s a celebrity diet doctor … Career for her and his two daughters together her grandfather was killed in 1918 a! 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