Charlton Heston made many, many enemies in Hollywood decades before his controversial political views blacklisted him from the film industry, an explosive new tell-all claims.
In Charlton Heston: Hollywood’s Last Icon, journalist Marc Eliot alleges that the leading man couldn’t stand his El Cid costar Sophia Loren.
The Italian bombshell’s diva antics “really got him angry,” producer Peter Snell says. “Loren was one of those actresses who got under his skin with her chronic lateness.”
Not only did she told up production for the often impatient Heston, Loren insisted her part in the 1961 historical drama be made larger, the actor’s son Fraser claims.
According to Eliot, Heston hated his onscreen lover so much, he insisted the director, Anthony Mann, hire a stand-in for him during Loren’s close-up shots!
He was “most uncomfortable” with love scenes opposite the star — and nearly dropped out of the following year’s comedy The Pigeon That Took Rome because she was attached to the project. (Loren ultimately turned down a role.)
Another leading lady Heston loathed? He was horrified by constantly “inebriated” 33 Days at Peking costar Ava Gardner’s behavior on the Spanish set, Eliot continues.
One day, when she disappeared from set, Heston allegedly discovered the sloppy beauty “using a red cape to play matador” with local cabs.
Twelve years after dealing with nightmare Garner, Heston battled his Macbeth costar Vanessa Redgrave — but for very different reasons.
“Vanessa is proving a strange lady to work with,” he allegedly wrote in his private diaries. “She is not b****y, or late, or any of the boring things I’ve found actresses can be, but she’s a balking kind of performer to work with…she’s very reluctant to accept any deviation from the published text.”
Heston didn’t just clash with Hollywood’s hottest women. A nasty feud erupted between the actor and his onetime friend, Paul Newman, in the early 1980’s.
The former pals battled over liberal Newman’s slams against president Ronald Reagan and their polar opposite opinions over nuclear policy.
During a joint appearance on ABC’s The Last Word, Newman “wouldn’t shake hands with me,” Heston later claimed.
The friends never reconciled. Both men died months apart in 2008.
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