Sunday, September 5, 2010
Natalie Wood - Classic Movie Goddess Part 2
Her sister is Lana Wood. Her half-sister is Olga Viriapaeff.
She suffered from a deep fear of drowning after having barely survived an accident when she was a little girl, during the filming of The Green Promise (1949). Her fear was so great that Elia Kazan had to lie - promising a double - and trick her into doing the scenes at the water reservoir in Splendor in the Grass (1961). She also had to do her own swimming scenes in "From Here to Eternity" (1979) despite her protests.
Was commonly listed as 5' 3" wearing heels in movie magazines, though her actual height was 5' 0".
An accident on a movie set (she fell into a river and almost drowned) when she was 9 years old left her with a permanently weakened left wrist and a slight bone protrusion, which, for the rest of her life, she hid with large bracelets. Regardless of the movie role, or anytime that she was out in public, she always wore a large bracelet on the left wrist.
The daughter of a Russian architect and a French ballerina could do a proper plié before she could barely walk.
Spoke Russian and English.
Entertainment Weekly placed her on the "100 greatest stars of all time" list, at #70.
Sister Lana Wood wrote the best-selling book about her titled "Natalie: a Memoir by Her Sister".
Was the youngest nominee in her category each of the three times she was nominated for an Oscar, the first being when she was 17 and the last when she was 25.
Has multiple connections with the James Bond franchise. Her sister, Lana Wood, was a Bond girl in Diamonds Are Forever (1971). Jill St. John, who was Natalie's childhood friend and is now married to her widower, Robert Wagner, also appeared as a Bond girl in the same film. Natalie co-starred in Meteor (1979) with Sean Connery, who played the James Bond character in seven films, and in Brainstorm (1983), she co-starred with Christopher Walken, who was a Bond villain in A View to a Kill (1985). Natalie also co-starred in "From Here to Eternity" (1979) with Kim Basinger, who was a Bond girl in Never Say Never Again (1983). Robert Wagner's character, "Number Two" in Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997), Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (1999) and Austin Powers in Goldmember (2002), is a spoof of the character "Largo" in Thunderball (1965).
Her best friends included actresses Stefanie Powers, Dyan Cannon and Carol Lynley. She was a childhood friend of her widower's current wife Jill St. John but they were not close as adults.