Hollywood superstar Natalie Wood bared her most intimate and secret thoughts in a never-before-seen-or-heard memoir that only now has been obtained by a bombshell new podcast. For decades, the remarkable tell-all remained locked away from the world. But now the 12-part audio documentary Fatal Voyage: The Mysterious Death of Natalie Wood has uncovered the lost work, which sheds new light on the screen siren’s secret life.
In the podcast’s third chapter, now available for download on iTunes, Wood describes her deep yearning for a conventional home life with her then-boyfriend, actor Robert Wagner. “Even though I grew up in a town where people change marital partners like hairstyles, I was raised in an old-fashioned family with traditional values,” Wood confided to her private diary. “I wanted, and still do, the things the girl next door takes for granted: a house with a husband, and children.”
And it seemed as if that dream was within reach — or at least for a while. Wrote Wood of the night Wagner proposed: “On December 6, 1957, the anniversary of our first serious date, he took me to a restaurant for a champagne supper. I spotted something glittering at the bottom of my champagne glass: a diamond and pearl ring. The Inscription said: Marry me.”
“Looking at it from the outside we must’ve seemed like the American Dream, we were both attractive, and successful so what could possibly be wrong?”
The answer was, of course: plenty. As the world well knows, Wood and Wagner’s fairy tale romance ultimately turned into a nightmare — and one that would have fatal consequences, as the actress mysteriously vanished on the night of Nov. 28, 1981 aboard their yacht, Splendour.
Wood, 43, and her hot-tempered husband, along with her Brainstorm co-star Christopher Walken, were off California’s Catalina Island. Her body, clad in a nightgown, red jacket and socks was found hours later, floating facedown about a mile from the yacht.
Over the years, Wagner has stonewalled cops, even after the case was reopened 2011 and he was named a “person of interest.” Now, Fatal Voyage’s investigative team, lead by journalist Dylan Howard, exposes chilling new evidence suggesting Wood’s demise was the possible result of “foul play,” as one homicide investigator described.
But, long before that tragic night, Wood described how her first marriage to Wagner — they divorced in 1962, but remarried ten years later — disintegrated under the pressures and jealousies of Tinsel Town. “I wanted to discuss our problems with R.J., but where do you begin?” she wrote. “And what can you say when everything, on the surface, looks so right?”
“As my professional and personal pressures increased, everything seemed magnified and distorted. A careless remark suddenly become a major insult.”