Goodbye Natalie, Goodbye Splendour

Open Road Media
14
Free sample

The shocking true crime story of a beloved Hollywood star gone too soon—told by the captain of the boat on which Natalie Wood spent her last night. 
 
Goodbye Natalie, Goodbye Splendour is the long‐awaited, detailed account of events that led to the mysterious death of Hollywood legend Natalie Wood off the coast of Catalina Island on November 28, 1981. It is a story told by a haunted witness to that fateful evening: Dennis Davern, the young captain of Splendour, the yacht belonging to Wood and husband Robert Wagner. Davern initially backed up Wagner’s version of that evening’s events through a signed statement prepared by attorneys. But Davern’s guilt over failing Natalie tormented him.
 
Davern reached out to his old friend Marti Rulli, and little by little, at his own emotional pace, he revealed the details of his years in Wood’s employ, of the fateful weekend that Natalie died, and of the events following her death that prevented him from telling the whole story—until now.
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About the author

Marti Rulli has been a lifelong resident of New Jersey. For thirty-five years, she has been employed in executive positions for newspaper corporations, commercial printing companies, and magazines. She runs her own advertising business and has been a freelance writer since 1972.
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4.4
14 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Open Road Media
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Published on
Apr 1, 2014
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Pages
390
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ISBN
9781480497566
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Entertainment & Performing Arts
Biography & Autobiography / Rich & Famous
True Crime / Murder / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The definitive biography of a vulnerable and talented actress, now with shocking new chapters including the reopened investigation into her mysterious drowning. 

Natalie Wood has been hailed alongside Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor as one of the top three female movie stars in film history. We watched her mature on the movie screen before our eyes in classics such as Miracle on 34th Street, Rebel Without a Cause, Splendor in the Grass, and West Side Story. But the story of what she endured, of what her life was like when the doors of the soundstages closed, had long been obscured.
 
Based on years of astonishing research, Natalie Wood (previously published as Natasha) raises the curtain on Wood’s turbulent life. Award-winning author Suzanne Finstad conducted nearly four hundred interviews with Natalie Wood’s family, close friends, legendary costars, lovers, film crews, and virtually everyone connected to her death. Through these firsthand accounts, Finstad reconstructs a life of emotional abuse and exploitation, of unimaginable fame, great loneliness, and loss. She reveals painful truths in Wood’s complex relationships with James Dean, Frank Sinatra, Warren Beatty, and, of course, Robert Wagner.

Thirty years after Natalie Wood’s death, the L.A. Sheriff’s Department reopened the investigation into her drowning using Finstad’s groundbreaking research and chilling, hour-by-hour timeline of that tumultuous weekend as evidence. Within a year, the L.A. Coroner changed Natalie Wood’s death certificate from “Accidental Drowning” to “Drowning and Other Undetermined Factors.” In 2018, the LAPD officially named Wagner a “Person of Interest” in Wood’s death.

In this updated edition, Finstad will share her explosive findings from the last two decades. With her unprecedented access to the LAPD’s “Murder Book,” ignored by the original investigators, and new witnesses who have never spoken publicly, Finstad uncovers what really happened to Natalie Wood on that fateful boating trip in 1981 with Wagner and Christopher Walken. She expands on intimate details from Wood’s unpublished memoir, which affirms her fear of drowning and the betrayal by Wagner that shattered their first marriage.

Finstad tells this heartbreaking story with sensitivity and grace, revealing a complex and conflicting mix of fragility and strength in a woman who was swept along by forces few could have resisted.
A detailed look at the charmed life and tragic death of one of Hollywood's earliest stars A vibrant and beloved Golden Age film comedienne who worked alongside the Marx Brothers, Laurel and Hardy, Ginger Rogers, Cary Grant, Clara Bow, and dozens of others, Thelma Todd was one of the rare actors to successfully cross over from silent films to "talkies." This authoritative new biography traces Todd's life and career, from a vivacious little girl to a young woman who became a reluctant beauty queen to her rapid rise as a Hollywood comedy star to her mysterious death at the age of 29. Increasingly disenchanted with the studio star system, Todd opened the successful Thelma Todd's Sidewalk Café, attracting adoring fans, tourists, and Hollywood celebrities. Life appeared blessed for the beautiful and outspoken Hollywood rebel. So the country was shocked when Todd was found dead by her housekeeper in a garage near the café. An inquest concluded that her death was accidental, caused by inhaling the car's exhaust fumes. In a thorough new investigation that draws on FBI documents, interviews, photographs, reports, and extortion notes—much of these not previously available to the public—author Michelle Morgan offers fresh evidence and conclusions about the circumstances surrounding Todd's death, proving what many people have long suspected, that Thelma had been murdered. The cast of suspects includes Thelma's Hollywood-director lover; her gangster ex-husband; assorted thugs who were pressuring her to install gaming tables in the room above her popular café; and a new, never-before-named mobster. Coinciding with the 80th anniversary of Todd's death, The Ice Cream Blonde is sure to interest any fan of Thelma Todd, Hollywood's Golden Age, or gripping real-life murder mysteries.
She spent her life in the movies. Her childhood is still there to see in Miracle on 34th Street. Her adolescence in Rebel Without a Cause. Her coming of age? Still playing in Splendor in the Grass and West Side Story and countless other hit movies. From the moment Natalie Wood made her debut in 1946, playing Claudette Colbert and Orson Welles’s ward in Tomorrow Is Forever at the age of seven, to her shocking, untimely death in 1981, the decades of her life are marked by movies 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 Wood began when she wanted to star in the movie adaptation of his novel Inside Daisy Clover, tells her extraordinary story. He writes about her parents, uncovering secrets that Natalie either didn’t know or kept hidden from those closest to her. Here is the young Natalie, from her years as a child actress at the mercy of a driven, controlling stage mother (“Make Mr. Pichel love you,” she whispered to the five-year-old Natalie before depositing her unexpectedly on the director’s lap), to her awkward adolescence when, suddenly too old for kiddie roles, she was shunted aside, just another freshman at Van Nuys High. Lambert shows us the glamorous movie star in her twenties—All the Fine Young Cannibals, Gypsy and Love with the Proper Stranger. He writes about her marriages, her divorces, her love affairs, her suicide attempt at twenty-six, the birth of her children, her friendships, her struggles as an actress and her tragic death by drowning (she was always terrified of water) at forty-three.
For the first time, everyone who knew Natalie Wood speaks freely–including her husbands Robert Wagner and Richard Gregson, famously private people like Warren Beatty, intimate friends such as playwright Mart Crowley, directors Robert Mulligan and Paul Mazursky, and Leslie Caron, each of whom told the author stories about this remarkable woman who was both life-loving and filled with despair.

What we couldn’t know–have never been told before–Lambert perceptively uncovers. His book provides the richest portrait we have had of Natalie Wood.
The New York Times bestselling definitive biography of Natalie Wood, Natasha is the haunting story of a vulnerable and talented actress whom many of us felt we knew.

We watched her mature on the movie screen before our eyes—in Miracle on 34th Street, Rebel Without a Cause, West Side Story, Splendor in the Grass, and on and on. She has been hailed—along with Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor—as one of the top three female movie stars in the history of film, making her a legend in her own lifetime and beyond. But the story of what Natalie endured, of what her life was like when the doors of the soundstages closed, has long been obscured.

Natasha is based on years of exhaustive research into Natalie's turbulent life and mysterious drowning. Author Suzanne Finstad conducted nearly four hundred interviews with Natalie's family, close friends, legendary costars, lovers, film crews, and virtually everyone connected with the investigation of her strange death.

Through these firsthand accounts from many who have never spoken publicly before, Finstad has reconstructed a life of emotional abuse and exploitation, of almost unprecedented fame, great loneliness, poignancy, and loss. She sheds an unwavering light on Natalie's complex relationships with James Dean, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Raymond Burr, Warren Beatty, and Robert Wagner and reveals the two lost loves of Natalie's life, whom her controlling mother prevented her from marrying.

Finstad tells this beauty's heartbreaking story with sensitivity and grace, revealing a complex and conflicting mix of fragility and strength in a woman who was swept along by forces few could have resisted.
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