‘Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind’: Why did Robert Wagner not talk about THAT argument before her death?
Natalie Wood's life and death were strewn by tragedy. The Hollywood star rose to become a darling in the tinsel town. Her life was scarred by a scandalous rape by a "powerful Hollywood actor," and two divorces. But, the spark in her eyes was never gone.
Fondly reminiscing her presence, an HBO documentary ‘Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind’ delves deeper into her professional and personal life. Natalie’s daughter Natasha Gregson Wagner takes the lead in the film and sheds light on the tragedy. She has a conversation with her stepfather Robert Wagner throughout the film as well as Natalie's ex-husband Richard Gregson.
Even though the documentary strings together her cinematic presence and personal life beautifully, there is one glaring question that hurts your heart. Why doesn't Robert talk about the argument he had on the night before her ill-fated death? He was labeled a "person of interest" when the investigation of Natalie's death was reopened and Captain Dennis Davern and Natalie's sister, Lana, have openly confirmed he was involved in the death. Did Dennis lie or were Robert's actions and involvement in her death blanketed away?
Both parties have clashing opinions on the tragedy. In her book, 'More Than Love', Natasha said Natalie left her clothes to Lana and they were sold, despite promises to Robert that they wouldn't be. Moreover, a shop promoted the items as 'Belonged to Natalie Wood'. Talking about the incident, Natasha wrote, "None of us were able to forgive Lana for that. After that, my aunt was no longer welcome in our home."
Robert's spokesman, Alan Nierob, told USA Today that Dennis and Lana should be embarrassed by their actions. "They are despicable human beings, capitalizing on the accidental death of a beloved member of the Wagner family," he said. "They should be ashamed of themselves."
Natasha says Christopher Walken, Natalie's actor friend who was on the yacht, Splendour, that night, declined to participate in the documentary that she produced. He also refused to discuss Natalie's death on 'CBS This Morning' in 2012, explaining he "stopped talking about that 30 years ago."
But, if they claim to be innocent, why didn't Robert talk about that argument again? Why didn't he clarify it properly? After all, in his memoir, Robert accepted that he had an argument with Natalie before she disappeared. Not just that, in the autopsy, it was found Natalie had bruises on her body and an abrasion on her left cheek. So why was it all a forgotten topic in this documentary?
Fans are wondering the same. "Watching Natalie Wood doc. Robert Wagner does not pass my smell test," one said and another posted, "Just watch the new #NatalieWoodHBO documentary. It was excellent but I don't believe Robert Wagner's version of her death. How do you not hear someone fall off a boat and scream? Still a mystery... #NatalieWood #robertwagner."
"I feel so terrible for Natasha. I might be able to give Robert Wagner the benefit of the doubt if it weren't for so many things that don't add up & the fact that he's danced around the answers for 40 yrs! #NatalieWoodHBO #NatalieWood," one wrote and another posted, "I 100% think Robert Waggoner did it #nataliewood he completely pushed her off that boat and that scummy avatar needs to serve his time."
The documentary premiered on HBO this Tuesday, May 5, 2020, at 9 pm ET.