Welcome To My Book Blog

A place to update and discuss facts surrounding the controversial, tragic death of legendary Hollywood film actress, wife and mother, Natalie Wood who drowned mysteriously Nov. 29, 1981 off Catalina Island. Thank you for visiting.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Interview with Randy Walker airing Sunday, Jan. 22 at noon, WSGE.org

WSGE 91.7fm - Public Affairs

The program is hosted by WSGE's Public Affairs Producer, Randy Walker, who has anchored the station's talk radio format for the past ten years.  The show airs Sundays from 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. and my interview will be at the top of that hour.

Randy interviewed me in 2009, and I am pleased to be talking with him again. Hope you will listen. 

 (21) Roundtable's Sunday Edition

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Natalie Wood case is not closed, nor given an official secondary ruling

The Natalie Wood case is very much alive and being investigated thoroughly. The information being reported that the case has been shut down and ruled accidental again is simply not accurate. What the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department this week announced is that the case is still considered an accidental drowning because that's what the initial ruling stipulates, meaning the initial ruling has not yet been changed. There has been no secondary ruling of accidental drowning as being reported. You would think media would do a bit more investigating, but I suppose in this "fast-food" world of news delivery, that level of journalism is a dying breed. CNN has reported this week with information closest to the truth of the matter, and I commend them for it.

The specific question the media should be asking the spokespeople from the LASD is, "Has the new investigation RULED and FILED the new findings an accidental drowning?" They would learn the answer is, "No," as there will be no definitive ruling until AFTER the new investigation is completed. Detectives are still working the case and will continue to do so for as long as it takes to investigate completely.

Last week, Steve Whitmore, who is the son of the late actor, James Whitmore, and a media spokesperson for the LA Sheriff brought me and my book, "Goodbye Natalie Goodbye Splendour," into his statement that the case has been filed a cold case and ended, further stating the reopening of the case in November 2011 was a two-day deal, based on a publicity stunt for my book, a statement I find insulting more to the department itself than to my efforts to bring Natalie Wood justice. I assure everyone, as I told Inside Edition in an interview yesterday, but this part did not air: I do not have the power to have a case of this magnitude reopened for an hour or for a year. It simply is not true that Natalie Wood's case was reopened for book publicity or for the 30th anniversary of her death. We had handed the LASD solid information and they deemed it worthy enough information to reinvestigate the case thoroughly, which they are still doing. They have plenty of "new information" on their desks and in their hands.

Within a day of Whitmore's announcement, he retracted it. That's because the case is still very much alive.

This week, William McSweeney, Chief of Detectives at the LASD, announced the case has revealed no new information but will remain open for the "small questions" lingering that need to be addressed. As I also told Inside Edition yesterday, "I had no idea there is such a thing as a 'small question' in a homicide investigation." And that's exactly what this new investigation is: a thorough homicide investigation with no filed conclusion as of yet, despite what you are hearing in the news. 

As for why there is conflicting and changing accounts stemming from the LASD is anyone's guess. From all I know and have learned, answers I've received make perfect sense, but I will not comment at this time, nor speculate on the reasoning behind these recent reports. As I await the final ruling of the new investigation, I have complete faith in the ongoing investigation. When a final ruling is available, I will comment then. I highly doubt it will be in the near future, and if it is, then it's Natalie Wood who doesn't receive what she deserves, once again.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Natalie Wood's Mercedes Heading to Auction: Fox News

Two things I'd like to correct about this article are: 1) Natalie's car was not pink, it was peach. She loved her Peach Mercedes Benz 300SL, and had loaned it to Dennis when his van broke down. 2) My book, Goodbye Natalie Goodbye Splendour was released in Sept. 2009, not Nov. 2011.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Compelling Natalie Wood Panel: An absolute MUST SEE Video

Natalie Wood: A Life and Death Foreshadowed (2002) - Suzanne Finstad, Lana Wood & Marilyn Wayne - YouTube

Sorry I couldn't seem to share the video right here at the blog but the link will take you directly to YouTube. This is a panel discussion with Suzanne Finstad, Lana Wood, and Marilyn Wayne, held on Oct. 11, 2002. It's an hour long, but every moment is worth viewing and listening to. Natalie's "mystery autobiography" is explained and even quoted from (yes, the same one I've been privy to). Marilyn Wayne tells a compelling story, the same story she has always told, but in this deliverance, she is most thorough, and the comparisons between her explanations and Dennis Davern's explanations of the emotional baggage of knowing what they know and why they did not immediately come forward are chilling. Even Suzanne, author of the excellent biography on Natalie, Natasha, claims the restaurant patrons and workers noticed the same dynamics transpiring with RJ and Natalie that Dennis has always exactly described. This is a worthy hour.

Tonight - Natalie Wood 's own voice - West Side Story

Interesting video as it shows when it's Natalie's voice and when the dub enters. I couldn't tell the difference. Natalie had been upset her singing voice was dubbed for West Side Story, and it stands to reason it hurt her chances with the Academy, but the film won 10 of its 11 nominations, and remains a classic. Natalie played an excellent, unmatchable Maria.

Natalie Wood dances with a powerful group of women.

Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn, and Natalie Wood. Powerful photograph.

Another actress I always admired was Audrey Hepburn. Natalie Wood and Audrey were both nominated for Oscars for 1961 films; Natalie for Splendor in the Grass and Audrey for Breakfast at Tiffany's. The Oscar went to Sophia Loren in Two Women, but Audrey had told Natalie her performance in Splendor was magnificent.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Spokesperson gives Access Hollywood's Misinformation in Status of Natalie Wood case

I received many notices tonight of an article published by Access Hollywood claiming that the Natalie Wood case was transferred to a cold case file, further stating the reopening of the case in November 2011 had been nothing more than a publicity stunt to promote my book Goodbye Natalie Goodbye Splendour. The media do not always get a story right and here is the link to Access Hollywood's RETRACTION of their earlier article full of misinformation. It speaks for itself. 

UPDATED: LASD Spokesperson — Natalie Wood Death Investigation Not Such a Cold Case, Still Seeking New Leads | Access Hollywoo...

Natalie and RJ for Evening Magazine

Evening Magazine Interview while Natalie filmed Brainstorm

The quality of this YouTube video is poor, but you can see and hear the interviews with Natalie and RJ just fine. This show aired while Natalie was away working on Brainstorm. It's an interesting interview because the issue of Natalie being away from their daughters is addressed by each of the couple. Some sources throughout the years have claimed that Natalie's demeanor while away filming Brainstorm was strange. She has been accused of drinking heavily, overusing pills (accordingly to Lambert's biography) and being "emotionally unfaithful" and possibly physically unfaithful (per her husband). Those claims are what I believe is information purposely put out there to confuse facts about the weeks leading to Natalie's death. Lambert's book sure pinned things on Natalie with comments such as she was known to "swish her tail." Dennis had never witnessed such behavior from Natalie.

She seems just fine in this interview. It appears what Wagner brings to this interview, just weeks before Natalie's death, are his concerns with Natalie's desire to work away from home. Natalie actually seems to have a sensible attitude about working. In this interview, Wagner resorts to his first marriage complaints about Natalie's work, and although he appears to impress he's okay with Natalie being away during the second marriage, it's implied he doesn't want a repeat of her former schedule. The time he visited North Carolina for 12 hours to see Natalie, Dennis says was a trip to check up on her. Dennis also says he returned home to L.A. seemingly satisfied Natalie was away only working, which I believe is the truth. What I see in this video is a wife and mother who misses her family but has her career in perspective. I see Wagner seemingly sincere about his feelings for Natalie, but also concerned about her working life.

What a difference a January can make

Coin similar to one I saw New Year's Eve

Always, the promise of a new year inspires us and we regroup ourselves, make plans, resolutions, schedule work, etc, and resolve to maintain positive expectations and hopes in regards to all aspects of our lives. What we can control, we offer best efforts, and what we can't control, good or bad, we try to accept and live with.

Last year in January 2011, while the ground was covered in two feet of snow, I felt anxious. After a six-month wait in 2010 for the GNGS paperback release in November 2010, I was realizing the impact our original publisher's sudden closing would have on my hopes for GNGS ever reaching its intended purpose.

This year, NJ's first day in January topped over 50 degrees, and that touch of springtime in our region was more than welcomed, and the warmth was comforting. I've learned from last year's experiences to be so much more careful in so many ways. It was in January of 2011, a year ago, that I began a year with a resolution to give a final concentrated effort to getting the Natalie Wood case reopened. Although it took eleven months into 2011 to learn of a new investigation, despite unchecked media claims of publicity stunts and misrepresented book releases, it was exalting news.

This year's start comes while Natalie's case is actually being re-investigated. We need to trust that the case is in good hands and to allow the professionals to perform their jobs. Personally, I gave it my all to get the case recognized, and I appreciate all of those who helped along that journey. I am so grateful to the LASD for giving an important case such important consideration. Natalie's case is one of many that deserve attention, but it is her case that I had become attached to throughout the past three decades, so of course it means a lot to me on a personal level. Whatever the outcome, the journey has proven a worthwhile effort.

For those who follow here, you know how much I love certain quotes and proverbs. Well, I especially love when certain words or ideas cross my path by chance. I spent my New Year's Eve with a small party at my home, consisting of family and a few close friends. Right after midnight, after joining the kids in banging pots and pans -- as no retail noisemaker has ever matched that fun way to create truly loud, annoying noise :-) -- I saw the words that I hope will define my new year. A close friend sat near me and I noticed his keys nearby. I asked about a unique coin emblem attached to his key-chain. He is very proud of it because the coin was issued to him from the CIA (he works for the government with official clearance and travels a lot working on computer systems). The coin is gold with decoration and the words that circle the outside rim read:
You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.

...Wishing everyone a year of truth, and the freedom that stems from knowing it... Happy New January, Happy New Year!