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Sally Field Tells The Truth About "Confusing And Complicated" Relationship With Burt Reynolds

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The world continues to pay tribute to Hollywood legend Burt Reynolds, who died last week at age 82.

Costars like Dolly Parton and Reba McEntire shared their fond memories of working alongside the star.

But one of the most heartfelt tributes of all came from Reynolds' ex-girlfriend, actress Sally Field.

In her statement, Field wrote that the years she spent with Reynolds "never leave my mind," and that he "will be in my history and my heart, for as long as I live."

But in her new memoir, Field lays out what their realtionship was really like. And not all her memories are so rosy.

"I stopped existing. I dressed for him, looked for him, walked for him."

Sally Field
Field in 1973.NBC - Wikimedia

The pair first met and worked together on the set of their hit comedy Smokey and the Bandit.

They felt a connection right away, and began a relationship that lasted for five years and featured four more onscreen collaborations.

"Burt was the most important thing that ever happened in my life," Field said about being cast as his love interest in Bandit.

"He rescued my career and literally put me to work, he literally gave me a new lease on life."

Even decades later, Reynolds told Vanity Fair that Field was the love of his life and "the one that got away."

"I miss her terribly," said Reynolds.

"Even now, it’s hard on me. I don’t know why I was so stupid. Men are like that, you know. You find the perfect person, and then you do everything you can to screw it up."

But Field's memories of their time together seem more complicated than the actor's. She has often described the star as very controlling and domineering.

Burt Reynolds.
Reynolds married Loni Anderson after his breakup from Field.Alan Light - Flickr

"Because what happened is that I stopped existing. I dressed for him, looked for him, walked for him," Field explained.

In the 80s, Reynolds and Field broke up. He went on to marry actress Loni Anderson, while Field married producer Alan Greisman.

But Reynolds seemed to never lose hope that he would reunite with Field one day.

"I spoke to her son recently," said Reynolds in 2015. "He said that his mum talks about me all the time. Maybe she’ll phone me one day. I’d love to have that conversation."

"I felt glad that he wasn't going to read it."

Field is promoting her new memoir, In Pieces, which will be released later this month.

And in a surprising interview with The New York Times, the actress says she's "glad" Reynolds isn't around to read it.

"This would hurt him," she explained.

"I felt glad that he wasn't going to read it, he wasn't going to be asked about it, and he wasn't going to have to defend himself or lash out, which he probably would have. I did not want to hurt him any further."

She says that their relationship - as she remembers it - was "confusing and complicated, and not without loving and caring, but really complicated and hurtful to me."

Along with Reynolds' controlling behavior, Field writes that he was suffering from an addiction to painkillers and barbiturates to medicate an on-set injury.

She even claims to have suggested Reynolds seek treatment for his stress and anxiety, but claims he called that "self-delusional poppycock."

Field also shared painful memories of her abusive stepfather, and claims her relationship with Burt was a way of "exorcising" childhood demons.

"I was trying to make it work this time," she remembered.

Despite the unhappy memories, it's clear that these two meant a lot to each other.

Rest in peace Burt!

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