Natalie Wood

After her success in West Side Story, Natalie Wood moved into leading roles. She won an Academy Award nomination for her performance in Splendor in the Grass. She married Robert Wagner in 1957, but the marriage ended in divorce in 1962.

Natalie Wood

Fresh scrapes and bruises on her body suggested she may have been assaulted before her death. However, no charges were ever filed.

As a young child star, Natalie Wood tugged at the heartstrings of audiences with her small roles. She first received attention with her role in the 1946 drama Tomorrow Is Forever, opposite Claudette Colbert and Orson Welles. Her next big break came with the release of Miracle on 34th Street, in which she played a precocious girl who questions Santa’s existence. The film made her a household name.

She starred in several other films as a teenager, including Splendor in the Grass and Rebel Without a Cause. These films marked her transition from a child actress to a mature leading lady. They also earned her three Academy Award nominations and one Golden Globe Award win. The movie made her a cultural icon and influenced the acting careers of such stars as Faye Dunaway, Jane Fonda, Audrey Hepburn, and Mia Farrow.

In the early ’60s, she made several more major movies, such as West Side Story and The Searchers. She also played Maria in Jerome Robbins’s Broadway adaptation of Romeo and Juliet. These films captured the restlessness of young Americans in the 1950s, as reflected by youth gangs and juvenile delinquency.

In 1957, she married actor Robert Wagner, eight years her senior. Their marriage lasted until 1962, when they separated and then divorced. The couple reunited in 1969 and had a daughter named Natasha. Despite her turbulent personal life, she continued to act sporadically. She appeared in a few television films, including an acclaimed televised version of Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and the miniseries From Here to Eternity.

She made her last theatrical film, the science fiction film Brainstorm, with Christopher Walken. Wood later retired from acting and focused on her family. She died on November 29, 1981, at the age of 36.

She co-starred with Dean in The Searchers

Natalie Wood first won audiences’ hearts as a precocious little girl in the 1946 holiday classic Miracle on 34th Street. A starring role in the 1957 juvenile delinquent drama Rebel Without a Cause brought her much more attention and fame. She was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance, and also for the romantic melodramas Splendor in the Grass and Love with a Proper Stranger.

After receiving numerous acting nominations, she became one of the most popular actresses in Hollywood. She continued to star in films throughout the 1960s, including West Side Story and Gypsy. She also won the Golden Globe Award for her role in 1962’s Splendor in the Grass. In the late ’70s, she appeared in several made-for-television movies and miniseries, including Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and the 1979 remake of From Here to Eternity.

In 1969, Wood married British producer Richard Gregson. They had a daughter, Natasha. At the time, she was under contract with Warner Bros., so she occasionally had to make movies she didn’t want to, which sometimes upset her. She also felt pressured by her mother to remain married and stay in show business. One of the movies she did not like was The Searchers, a 1956 western in which she starred alongside James Dean and Sal Mineo. She did not feel the film adequately depicted her as a girl abducted and raised by Native Americans.

In 1977, she starred in the mystery comedy Peeper with Michael Caine. She later guest starred on the television series Switch and Hart to Hart, and in the sex comedy The Last Married Couple in America with George Segal and Valerie Harper. She was also in the 1976 comedy The Cracker Factory and the 1979 science fiction film Meteor with Sean Connery. In her final film, the 1983 movie Brainstorm with Christopher Walken, she received high ratings and critical acclaim.

She married Richard Gregson

Natalie Wood first won the hearts of audiences with her small role as an orphan in the 1946 drama Tomorrow Is Forever. Soon, she received a regular stream of film offers. She started out with mostly family films and was often cast as the daughter of stars such as Fred MacMurray, Margaret Sullivan, James Stewart, and Joan Blondell. She also appeared as the niece of John Wayne in a number of westerns. Despite her early success, she was criticized for being one-dimensional and a poor actress.

In the 1960s, she was able to overcome this criticism with her performances in West Side Story and Splendor in the Grass. These films showcased her talent as a dramatic actress and earned her three Oscar nominations. She was also nominated for a Golden Globe and a BAFTA Award.

Following her film career, Wood devoted herself to her family. In 1974, she married musician Robert Wagner and had a daughter with him called Courtney. Her relationship with Wagner grew more intimate over time, and she referred to him as “Daddy” during her lifetime.

Despite her popularity, Natalie struggled with depression and other personal problems throughout her life. She tried several times to commit suicide, and she spent a period of her life undergoing daily psychoanalysis. She also suffered from severe anxiety, which manifested in a deep-seated fear of being alone at night.

Her chaotic personal life was a reflection of her unstable mental health. She was prone to emotional outbursts, and she was sometimes verbally and physically abusive to her husband and children. She also abused alcohol and smoked heavily. Her health deteriorated, and she died in 1981 at the age of forty-one.

She married Robert Wagner

Natalie Wood became a Hollywood icon in the 1950s, thanks to films like Rebel Without a Cause and Splendor in the Grass. Her turbulent private life, however, often overshadowed her acting career. She married actor Robert Wagner when she was 18 and divorced him five years later. She later married Richard Gregson and had a daughter with him. She also had a relationship with actor Warren Beatty.

As a child actress, Wood had to follow strict California laws that required her to spend three hours a day in school while shooting. She attended classes on the studio lots and was considered a straight-A student. She did not have an easy childhood, though, and had a difficult time separating from her mother.

When she first met Wagner, a 20th Century Fox contract player eight years her senior, she was 18 and had a huge crush on him. She asked her agent to set up a date for them in 1956, and they married that year. Wagner had already been in several movies, including Prince Valiant and A Kiss Before Dying, but he was not a big star.

The marriage lasted until 1962, and Wood had other relationships in the meantime. She returned to film in 1969, but had a few flops before getting her best work in a teleplay of Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

After that, she began to fade from the screen. Her last role was in the 1981 sci-fi thriller Brainstorm, which was shot on location off Southern California. The night of her death, she was on a boat with Wagner, co-star Christopher Walken, and the yacht’s skipper, Dennis Davern. Tempers reportedly flared over Wood’s apparent closeness to Walken, and the two argued. When Wagner could not find her in the cabin, he searched for her on board the Splendour and found her body in the water near the dinghy. The death was ruled accidental.

She died in 1981

The Hollywood legend Natalie Wood died mysteriously at the age of 43 on Thanksgiving weekend 1981. Her death is a mystery that has endured for decades. New evidence has led to renewed interest in the case, and her widower Robert Wagner, who is now 87, is a person of interest.

On November 30, 1981, Wood was on board her husband’s yacht, Splendor, with her co-star Christopher Walken and the boat’s captain, Dennis Davern. Neither Walken nor Wagner saw her disappear, and at the time it was assumed she had slipped off the side of the boat while untying her dinghy. The next morning her body was found floating in the water a mile away from the yacht, near a cove called Blue Cavern Point.

A few days later, the investigation was closed, and Wood was buried with her husband at a star-studded funeral. The Los Angeles County coroner ruled her death accidental, citing superficial bruises on her arms and knee and scratch marks on the boat’s dinghy as proof that she had fallen into the ocean.

While the circumstances surrounding her death remain unclear, many fans believe foul play was involved. Her daughter, Natasha Gregson Wagner, has just released a documentary about her mother’s life and death. The film features rare interviews with those closest to her, including her widower.

The documentary also explores the relationship between Wood and her mother, who was a gypsy. The two women were very close. As a young child, Wood was the focus of intense public scrutiny because of her role in RKO’s West Side Story, which made her a star at the age of 16. Her mother insisted she be kept under close control, but as a teenager, Wood rebelled against her strict image and took on riskier roles.