Who is Natalie Wood?
Natalie wood is a famous American Hollywood actress of Ukrainian and Russian descent whose original name was Natalia Nikolaevna Zakharenko or Natasha Gurdin. She appeared in 56 movies in her career. She was born on July 20, 1938 at San Francisco, California, USA to Maria Zudilova and Nicholas Zacharenko. Her father was a day laborer who was son of a chocolate-factory worker. Her mother who was born in Barnaul, southern Siberia to a wealthy industrialist was an aspiring actress. She had two siblings: Lana Wood and Olga Viripaeff.
During the Russian Civil War, her maternal grandfather who owned, soap and candle factories, fled Russia for China, and settled there for sometime as refugees. Later moved to the U.S. by ship in 1930. At that time Wood’s mother had already married to mechanic Alexander Tatuloff from 1925 to 1936. And her paternal grandfather joined the anti-Bolshevik civilian forces early in the war and later migrate to Shanghai, China, where they had relatives.In 1933 they resettled along the U.S. West Coast. Wood’s parents married in 1938, five months before Wood’s birth.
Wood was enrolled into ballet classes by her mother. She recieved her education as per the law in California which needed child actors to study at least three hours a day learning and a teacher was hired to teach her on the sets. She graduated from ‘Van Nuys High School’ in 1956.
Height,Weigh & Zodiac sign
|Height||5’2″ (157 cm),|
|Natural hair color||Dark Brown|
|Eye color||Dark Brown|
|Body Measurements||34-23-35 in | 86.5-58-89 cm|
|Weight||56 kg | 124 lbs|
|Shoe size||7 US | 37.5 EU|
Acting career & Natalie wood movies
Wood’s mother Marie often took her to the cinema, made her to watch films and to study the films of Hollywood child stars. Natalie wood began her acting career as a child actor who later transitoned to adult roles. When Wood was only five years old, she made her film debut in Happy Land (1943) as the “Little Girl Who drops Ice Cream Cone” that lasted only 15 seconds. Natalie made an unforgettable impression on the world with her delicate performance and its overwhelming beauty. At an early age, Wood caught the attention of film director Irving Pichel, who kept in touch with the family.
In 1946, Pichel helped Wood, who was then seven years old, get a screen test for a role in the romance film Tomorrow Is Forever. In this film She played the role of Margaret Ludwig, a post-World War II German orphan, opposite Orson Welles as Wood’s guardian and Claudette Colbert. Next came ,The Bride Wore Boots, directed by Pichel and then came the 20th Century Fox to play Gene Tierney’s daughter in The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (1947). In 1947, Wood signed up with ‘20th Century Fox’ studio for her first major role in the movie ‘Miracle on 34th Street.’ The film made her one of the top child artists of Hollywood.
In 1955, the first major role of Wood came when she acted in ‘Rebel Without a Cause’ opposite James Dean. She was only 16 years old at that time. Wood was nominated for supporting actress for this fim. In 1956 she played a small but important role in ‘The Searchers’ along with John Wayne. She was cast in the movie ‘Splendor in the Grass’ in 1961 by director Elia Kazan. was nominated for “Best Actress” for the film “Splendor In The Grass”. It was her first adult acting career.
Natalie Wood in “West Side Story”
In 1961 came “West Side Story”, an American musical romantic drama. It was directed by Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins and stars by Natalie Wood (Maria), Richard Beymer (Tony), Russ Tamblyn (Riff), Rita Moreno (Anita), and George Chakiris (Bernardo).
The film follows two young street gangs from different ethnic backgrounds. It was a love story movie adapted from Shakespeare’s classic ‘Romeo and Juliet.’ In the movie, Maria who played as a sister of leader of a street gang, falls in love with a boy Tony a former member of another rival gang. It was the highest grossing film of 1961 and won three Golden Globe Awards, including best musical award. The film won ten out of eleven nominated Academy Award thus making it the musical film with the most oscar award winner. Also won Academy Award for Best Director between two people-Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins making it the first film to share the award between two directors.
And came ‘Love with the Proper Stranger’ in 1963, ‘The Great Race’ in 1965, ‘Inside Daisy Clover’ in 1965, ‘This Property Is Condemned’ in 1966, ‘Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice’ in 1969, ‘Diary of a Mad Housewife’ in 1970. In the 1960’s she established herself in the hollywood industry as a bold and versatile actress and considered one of Hollywood’s most valuable and wanted actresses.
In 1970, pregnant with her first child, Wood took a break as she wanted to pay more attention to her role as a mother and no longer a hot property in mid 1970’s. In the late-70s, Wood starred in movies like ‘Meteor’ 1979—starring opposite Sean Connery, ‘The Last Married Couple in America’ 1980—a sex comedy, and ‘The Cracker Factory’ 1979. She also appeared in the TV series ‘From Here to Eternity’ in 1979. Her last film role was alongside Christopher Walken in “Brainstorm” (1983).
Images of Natalie wood
Awards & Achievements
Over her career, Wood was nominated three times for an Academy Award, and won three Golden Globe awards.
1946- won the ‘Most Talented Young Actress’ award for the film ‘Tomorrow Is Forever.’
In 1955 by Life magazine-honoured as “The Most Beautiful Teenager in the World”
1957- won the ‘Golden Globe Award’ for the category ‘Most Promising Newcomer – Female’ for the film ‘Rebel Without a Cause.’
1964- won the ‘Mar del Plata Film Festival Award’ for the category ‘Best Actress’ for the film ‘Love with the Proper Stranger.’
1966- won Goldwn Globe Award for World Film Favorite – Female
In 1970’s by Playboy magazine Voted one of the top sex stars
In 1977 People magazine (USA) named-one of “The 25 Most Intriguing People of 1976”
1980-won Best Actress in a Television Series – Drama for From Here to Eternity (1979)
Natalie Wood received an award from the Harvard Lampoon magazine in 1966 naming her “Worst Actress of Last Year, This Year and Next.” Much to everyone’s surprise, she accepted the award in person, the first recipient to do so.
Natalie wood spouse
Natalie wood married three times in her life. She married to Robert Wagner two times and Richard Gregson
Wood had a huge crush on actor Robert Wagner since his childhood and she married twice with him. She married for the first time with him in 1957.However they divorced in 1962. She married for the second time in 1969 with British producer Richard Gregson after dating him for two and a half years. They divorced in 1972. In 1972 Wood remarried with her first husband Robert Wagner. They remained married until Wood’s death.
Natalie Wood daughter
Natalie Wood had two daughter-Natasha Gregson and Courtney Wagner. Natasha Gregson was from her second husband Richard Gregson and the Courtney Wagner from her first and third husband Robert Wagne.
How did Natalie wood died?
In 1981 Wood died from drowning when she was on a weekend boat trip to Santa Catalina Island. She was found 1.6 km away from the yacht, with the events surrounding her death remaining questionable. She was with her husband Wagner and actor Christopher Walken. At that time she was only 43 years. Her mortal remains were buried in ‘Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery.’