Richard Wagner is an actor who was known for his involvement in many films thanks to his dashing looks, but perhaps his acting has been overshadowed by the many ups and downs of his personal life. He is known for being twice married to Natalie Wood, as well as the controversy surrounding her mysterious drowning. He starred in Hart to Hart, whose famous line went: “When they met, it was murder,” and many wondered if that was truly the star crossed lovers’ fate. This is the story of Wagner’s life, career, and where he is now.
The Early Years
Wagner was born to Norwegian immigrants in Detroit, Michigan in 1930. He became interested in acting when he was a teenager, and once he was linked to Albert “Cubby” Broccoli, his career began to take off. In 1950, he starred in his first film The Happy Years, which helped land him a contract with 20th Century Fox, and his first film with them was Halls of Montezuma.
A Rising Child Star
Of course, almost no mention of Wagner doesn’t include something about the enigmatic Natalie Wood. The two actors first met in 1949, when she was 10 years old and he was 18, while at the 20th Century Fox studios. She was born Natalia Nikolaevna Zakharenkoco and began acting since she was just 4. She became well known for her role in Miracle of 34th Street when she was just 8.