Ryan O’Neal admits to a doubly shocking faux pas in September’s issue of Vanity Fair.
At length, O’Neal discusses why he doesn’t believe he should have been a father. He describes the incident with Tatum at Farrah’s funeral:
“I had just put the casket in the hearse and I was watching it drive away when a beautiful blonde woman comes up and embraces me,” Ryan told me. “I said to her, ‘You have a drink on you? You have a car?’ She said, ‘Daddy, it’s me—Tatum!’ I was just trying to be funny with a strange Swedish woman, and it’s my daughter. It’s so sick.”
“That’s our relationship in a nutshell,” Tatum said when I asked her about it. “You make of it what you will.” She sighed. “It had been a few years since we’d seen each other, and he was always a ladies’ man, a bon vivant.”
Maintaining contact with only one of his several children (Redmond, his son with Farrah), O’Neal says he’s “never been happier.
“A couple of them I would take back.
“I don’t think I was supposed to be a father,” said the actor, who had Tatum, 45, and Griffin, 44, with first wife Joanna Moore; son Patrick, 42, with actress Leigh Taylor-Young; and son Redmond, 24, with Fawcett.
“Just look around at my work — they’re either in jail or they should be,” O’Neal said.
The Vanity Fair piece, entitled Beautiful People, Ugly Choices, is one of two VF covers for September. Farrah again is sharing the spotlight with Michael Jackson, who is the subject of the other September cover hitting newstands this week.