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The New York occasions bestseller Pieces of My Heart is the revelation-filled memoir from one in every of Hollywood’s so much gifted actors, Robert J. Wagner. He bargains readers a candid and deeply own examine his lifestyles and occupation, from his upward thrust to stardom between legends like Cary supply and Barbara Stanwyck to his marriage, divorce, and remarriage to starlet Natalie wooden. With colour images and never-before-told tales, it is a quintessentially American, remarkably candid tale of 1 of the nice sons of Hollywood.

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He knew all people, from the proprietors to the reliable boys, he might speak their language, and everyone loved him. Fred’s politics have been Republican, but if it got here to humans he was once a real democrat. He was once pleased with anyone, might consult anyone. humans cared approximately Fred simply because he cared approximately humans. He enjoyed the tune, i believe, as a result of the dedication that’s precious in racing. everybody enthusiastic about racing, from the again of the tune to front, is completely dedicated, and that used to be the best way Fred labored. The task of the dancer is to coach and rehearse a dance again and again until eventually the quantity is devoted to muscle reminiscence. at some point soon, the dancer reaches some extent the place he doesn’t need to imagine, he can simply practice. It’s virtually exactly the similar factor a coach does together with his horse. performing with Fred was once like that in addition. We mentioned scenes a lot—what we have been going to do and what we have been going for—and we rehearsed much. i discovered that Fred had innate intelligence, and he additionally had a good intuition for what labored for him and for the nature he was once taking part in. after which, whilst the cameras rolled, we threw all of that away; we weren’t conversing approximately it as actors, we have been enjoying it because the characters. for those who give it some thought, Fred used to be a really courageous performer; he was once regularly attempting new issues, and he by no means performed it secure. It didn’t topic if it used to be using cutting edge lighting tricks for a dance quantity, recording a jazz album, or getting on a skateboard on the age of seventy-eight. Fred used to be consistently attempting to do whatever extra. The blessing for me was once that Fred’s wisdom of the enterprise and what was once had to continue to exist it helped me turn into higher. while i'd get down concerning the studio or my occupation, he may take me apart and inform me, “Don’t allow them to get on most sensible of you. Don’t ever get destructive. there are numerous bumps within the highway; you’ve received to maintain your chin up. an important factor is to maintain going. ” None of this is often profound, yet it all is right, and the truth that it was once coming from Fred Astaire pressured me to take it heavily. such a lot of actually proficient humans fall by way of the wayside simply because they get discouraged and lose their pleasure, their depth. It used to be Fred who inspired upon me the everlasting price of retaining a favorable perspective. We stayed shut for the remainder of his lifestyles. within the mid-1970s, he fell in love with the jockey Robyn Smith, who used to be greater than 40 years more youthful than he used to be. Fred requested me what i presumed. “Look,” he stated, “everybody thinks I’m loopy to wish to marry this lady. What do you think that? ” I remembered how a lot I had enjoyed Barbara Stanwyck; I knew that age used to be no barrier to like, and that i informed him i used to be one hundred pc for it. truly, I advised him what Spencer Tracy had advised me: “Are you cheerful? Then that’s all that concerns. ” by way of 1980, once they eventually obtained married, Fred used to be 80 and Robyn used to be thirty-six. i feel that, whereas Fred used to be alive, she was once totally nice for him. FIFTEEN “SHE used to be WITH ME FOR the remainder of HER existence. ” the second one time round, and not happier: Natalie’s and my moment marriage.

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