Jane Fonda said she saw her father Henry Fonda “break down and weep” for the first time during one of their final moments together before his death.
In a clip from Fonda’s upcoming appearance on Who’s Talking to Chris Wallace , the 80 for Brady actress describes an emotional moment with her father (who died in 1982 at age 77) when asked by host Chris Wallace whether the pair resolved their differences before Henry’s death.
“Before he died I was able to tell him that I loved him and that I forgave him for, you know, whatever didn’t happen,” Jane, 85, shares. “And I hope that he would forgive me for not being a better daughter. I got to say that to him.”
“He didn’t say anything. But he wept,” she continues. “I had never seen that before. I’d never seen my father break down and weep. And I— it was, it was powerful.”
Henry, best known for his roles in 1940’s The Grapes of Wrath and 1957’s 12 Angry Men, was described by PEOPLE in 1975 as “respected for his talent but widely disliked for his abrasive egotism and vanity,” leading to sometimes difficult relationships with his children, Jane and her brother Peter Fonda.
After Wallace admitted he also had a “challenging relationship” with his own dad, late 60 Minutes correspondent Mike Wallace, at times, Fonda says it’s “so important to try to clear everything up” with loved ones before a death in the family.
“You know, I’m not scared of dying,” the actress says to Wallace. “Are you?”
After the journalist says he’s “not looking forward” to the concept of death, Jane says, “I am. It’s an adventure. I kind of, you know, I don’t want to go, I still have a lot to do.”
What I’m really scared of is getting to the end of life with a lot of regrets when there’s no time to do anything about it,” she adds, noting that while she holds “very few regrets” at age 85, she wishes she could have approached parenting differently.
“I was not the kind of mother that I wished that I had been to my children,” Jane admits. “I have great, great children, talented, smart. And I just didn’t know how to do it.”
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