Clint Eastwood’s on-set affair that almost ended in real-life duel with scorned husband
CLINT EASTWOOD’S art once nearly imitated his art as a scorned husband allegedly challenged him to a duel over a workplace affair.
Clint Eastwood is arguably the most well-known Western cinema actor, making his name with tough protagonists that aren’t to be messed with. However, before he picked up prominence as the cowboy anti-hero, Eastwood was allegedly challenged to a real duel by his co-star’s husband in 1968.
Eastwood had just sprung to fame in the mid-Sixties when he took a role in the 1968 musical Paint Your Wagon.
Jean Seberg co-starred with Eastwood in the Gold Rush-era musical, with multiple reports from the time detailing the pair’s passionate affair on set.
At the time, the Dirty Harry actor was married to his first wife, Margaret Neville Johnson, and Seberg was wed to her second husband, French novelist Romain Gary.
Seberg was allegedly smitten with the Gran Torino actor, and even explained to her husband that she had fallen in love with someone else.
Karina Longworth, the host of Hollywood history podcast You Must Remember This, explained that once Gary figured out it was Eastwood his wife was besotted with he challenged the actor to a duel, although she did not mention what weapons he suggested.
She spoke about the duel on the podcast: “They never went through with it, and instead Romain left, and Jean called her publicist to confess she was madly in love with Clint Eastwood, and she needed help announcing she was getting a divorce.”
Seberg allegedly believed Eastwood was equally devoted to their relationship and that it would endure long after the filming ended.
Although the actress divorced her husband, Eastwood didn’t display the same amount of devotion to his co-star, as he would stay married to Johnson until 1984.
In fact, at the time Eastwood – now 92 years old – already had three children, two other mistresses and a reputation as a serial cheater.
Eastwood’s first widely reported affair took place just a year after he got married and resulted in his daughter Laurie who was given up for adoption according to Eastwood biographer Patrick McGilligan.
Stuntwoman Roxanne Tunis also had a widely reported, 14-year-long relationship with the actor and fell pregnant with another daughter, Kimber, in 1964.
Eastwood’s first child with his wife, son Kyle, was born the same year as Paint Your Wagon.
By the end of filming, the Million Dollar Baby actor moved on almost immediately, leaving Seberg heartbroken and traumatised.
Jerry Pam, the publicist for both stars at the time, shared in 1981: “Once they got back to Paramount, it was as if Clint didn’t know who she was.
“Jean couldn’t believe that he could be that indifferent to her, after everything that had gone on in Baker.
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