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Robert Wagner

Real name: Robert John Wagner
Birthdate: February 10, 1930
Status: Married
Partner: Jill St. John

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Biography

Born in Detroit, Michigan, the son of a steel executive, Wagner moved with his family to Los Angeles, California, when he was seven. At an early age, Wagner became an aspiring actor and was successfully employed in a variety of jobs, most prominently as a caddy for actor Clark Gable. However, it wasn't until he was dining with his family at a Beverly Hills restaurant that he was "discovered" by a talent scout. Making his debut in The Happy Years (1950), he would play minor characters in several military themed films until his performance in With a Song in My Heart (1952) starring Susan Hayward, which would lead to a contract with 20th Century Fox.

On his way to becoming one of Fox's visible younger stars, Wagner began appearing in public with several young actresses including Debbie Reynolds, eventually becoming lifelong friends. In 1956, Wagner became involved with 18-year-old actress Natalie Wood, and was married in Scottsdale, Arizona on December 28, 1957. The marriage was celebrated in Hollywood as the most "glittering union of the 20th century". Living in a Beverly Hills home worth $150,000, the couple soon became involved in financial troubles. At Fox, Wagner's career was slowly being overtaken by newer actors such as Marlon Brando and Paul Newman while Natalie Wood's also ran into trouble as her contract with Warner Bros. was suspended for 14 months after her refusal to appear in a movie filming in England. The two would eventually file for divorce on April 27, 1962, with Natalie entering a relationship with actor Warren Beatty soon afterwards.

Wagner, reportedly distraught over the divorce, traveled to Europe and was working on The Longest Day (1962) when he met an old friend, actress Marion Marshall. After a brief courtship, Wagner married Marshall on July 22, 1963 and the following year had a daughter, Katie Wagner. The two divorced in 1970.

In 1968, Wagner made his television debut starring in his first series, It Takes a Thief and, after a successful two and a half seasons, his career began to rise.

Despite his divorce, Wagner continued to keep in contact with Natalie Wood and, in 1971, at a chance meeting with Wood in a restaurant, the two began to resume their relationship (despite her marriage to British producer Richard Gregson). Wood eventually divorced Gregson, and gaining custody of her daughter Natasha, they remarried on June 16, 1972 in a ceremony on their yacht Splendour. Two years later, along with Katie Wagner and Natasha Gregson Wagner, the couple had a daughter Courtney Brooke.Robert Wagner & Natalie Wood

Recently, Wagner played the pivotal role of President James Garfield in the the comedy/horror film Netherbeast Incorporated (2007). The role was written with Wagner in mind.

Wagner was a loyal friend to Eddie Albert for over 40 years and said Albert was a true blessing to him. Wagner was only 8 when he first watched his future mentor in the 1938 movie, Brother Rat, and was impressed. He first worked with the seasoned actor in the 1962 movie, The Longest Day. Shortly afterwards, they co-starred in Switch, and The Concorde: Airport '79. Wagner was grief-stricked when in 1985, he has heard about the loss of his mentor's wife, Margo. Margo's death had strengthened the friendship between Albert & Wagner, as the two kept in touch for the next two decades, until Albert's own death in 2005, where Wagner gave one of the eulogies.



 


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