Natalie Wood: A Life by Gavin Lambert

By Gavin Lambert

She spent her existence within the video clips. Her early life remains to be there to determine in Miracle on thirty fourth Street. Her early life in Rebel and not using a Cause. Her coming of age? nonetheless enjoying in Splendor within the Grass and West part Story and numerous different hit video clips. From the instant Natalie wooden made her debut in 1946, enjoying Claudette Colbert and Orson Welles's ward in Tomorrow Is Forever on the age of 7, to her stunning, premature dying in 1981, the a long time of her lifestyles are marked by way of video clips that—for their moments—summed up America's dreams.

Now the acclaimed novelist, biographer, critic and screenwriter Gavin Lambert, whose twenty-year friendship with Natalie wooden all started whilst she desired to megastar within the motion picture edition of his novel Inside Daisy Clover, tells her outstanding tale. He writes approximately her mom and dad, uncovering secrets and techniques that Natalie both didn't understand or stored hidden from these closest to her. this is the younger Natalie, from her years as a toddler actress on the mercy of a pushed, controlling degree mom ("Make Mr. Pichel love you," she whispered to the five-year-old Natalie sooner than depositing her all of sudden at the director's lap), to her awkward youth while, abruptly too previous for kiddie roles, she was once shunted apart, simply one other freshman at Van Nuys excessive. Lambert indicates us the glamorous celeb in her twenties—All the wonderful younger Cannibals, Gypsy and Love with the correct Stranger. He writes approximately her marriages, her divorces, her amorous affairs, her suicide try at twenty-six, the start of her young ones, her friendships, her struggles as an actress and her tragic loss of life by means of drowning (she was once consistently scared of water) at forty-three.

For the 1st time, every person who knew Natalie wooden speaks freely—including her husbands Robert Wagner and Richard Gregson, famously deepest humans like Warren Beatty, intimate pals resembling playwright Mart Crowley, administrators Robert Mulligan and Paul Mazursky, and Leslie Caron, every one of whom advised the writer tales approximately this awesome lady who used to be either life-loving and jam-packed with despair.

What we couldn't know—have by no means been instructed before—Lambert perceptively uncovers. His publication offers the richest portrait we now have had of Natalie wooden.

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You could tell his heart was in it every time. I’m sure Rex’s and Vince’s were, too. But Darrell, it just seemed like that was what he was all about. That’s what Darrell taught me. Here I am, an older guy in the air force and everything else, and this guy has taught me more in that little time I knew him than most people I know. And it was all about life, and living it. That boy did it. THOUGH HIS brother was already working with Pantera, and his mom worked with Carolyn Abbott, Buddy Blaze resisted early invites to check out the band.

I think it gave him a new youth, basically. ” Just because his dad was always around didn’t mean Darrell didn’t partake in what nightclubs have to offer. “In Texas, if you’re kicking ass up there on that stage, people send you shots to show their appreciation,” Darrell said. “So, what do you do? Turn the shot down and piss off some big-assed dude and his buds? Not in Texas, bro! ” JERRY ABBOTT served a much more vital role in Pantera than merely allowing Darrell access to the stage. For one thing, he gave the band access to a recording studio.

That’s why, though Ken hadn’t been around him on a daily basis for almost two decades, he could do an impression of Darrell that conjures his voice precisely. “You know, they almost grew up together, you can almost say, before they became men,” Kitty says. In each case, the Websters’ introduction to Darrell doesn’t have the makings of history, even the history of a heavy metal band—or, at least, it doesn’t seem to initially. But in the telling, there is the jolt of possibility, as the future unfolds like scenes from a movie.

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