Sally Field Details Her Complicated Relationship With Jealous, ‘Controlling’ Burt Reynolds

The actress wrote about her tumultuous love affair in her memoir, 'In Pieces.'

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The actress wrote about her tumultuous love affair in her memoir, 'In Pieces.'

Sally Field’s five-year romance with Burt Reynolds was far from a fairytale, despite the fact that he often referred to her as the love of his life. In her new memoir, In Pieces, Field detailed her rocky relationship with the late movie star, whom she first met on the set of their movie, Smokey and the Bandit, in 1977. They then dated on and off as they made four movies together.

In an excerpt from the book shared by the Daily Mail, Field wrote that her relationship with Reynolds collided with his rise to fame as a movie superstar.

“By the time we met, the weight of his stardom had become a way for Burt to control everyone around him, and from the moment I walked through the door, it was a way to control me.”

In another passage, excerpted by People, the 71-year-old actress wrote that Reynolds “began to housebreak” her when they got together, “teaching me what was allowed and what was not.”

“If I wanted to tell him what I’d accomplished or talk about my children, or Lord knows, disagree with him about anything, he’d listen glassy-eyed for a moment, maybe offer a distracted comment or two before turning away.”

Field also revealed that Reynolds was extremely controlling and insanely jealous of her friendships with other men.

“I knew early on never to mention the men who had been in my life, and later became terrified of running into somebody I might have known, whether sexually or not. Burt would pinch my face in his hands, demanding I tell him who the guy was and what kind of relationship I’d had with him.”

Sally Field also alleged that Burt Reynolds even tried to stop her from taking the title role in the film Norma Rae, a part that won her the Best Actress trophy at the 1980 Oscars.

During a sit-down interview with ABC News‘ Diane Sawyer, Field admitted that her “instantaneous” bond with Reynolds stemmed from the duo’s neediness.

“We’d known each other about three days, four days [when we filmed Smokey and the Bandit]. It was instantaneous and four days felt like four years. You can see it in our faces. We were sort of, you know, deeply entangled. The nature of it wasn’t just, ‘Oh this is a love affair.’ There was some ingredient between us having to do with my care-taking and him needing to be taken care of.”

Field went on to describe her ex-lover as “a complicated man.”

Years before she penned In Pieces, Sally Field talked to O Magazine about her relationship with Reynolds, saying he was “very similar” to her abusive stepfather “in so many ways.”

“A lot of our time was about my needing to be able to walk away from that profound connection to my stepfather,” the Oscar-winning actress admitted.

Burt Reynolds died on September 6, 2018 at age 82 — less than two weeks before Sally Field’s bombshell book hit stores. As the Inquisitr previously reported, Field, who had not spoken to her ex at all in the 30 years before his death, has admitted that Reynolds would have been “hurt” by her memoir — and that she is glad he will be spared having to read it or be asked about it.