Inside Sally Field and Burt Reynolds' Iconic Relationship 40 Years Later

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A-list actress Sally Field has had a complex love life, however, her highest-profile romance was with actor Burt Reynolds in the ’70s.

“Burt was the most important influence that came into my life other than my children at the time,” she has said of the actor, who chose her as his co-star in 1977’s Smokey and the Bandit. Having been self-conscious about her looks for years (“I could definitely be ugly at the drop of a hat,” she once said), the call from Hollywood’s top hunk was thrilling. “I thought even if the film didn’t work, if he thinks I’m attractive in it, other people will think so, too,” she explained.

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Their ensuing romance caught her off guard, but she fell hard. “He gave me a feeling that I was sexy, and I wanted to be everything he ever wanted,” she says. “[But] that was terrible, because what happened is that I stopped existing. I dressed for him, looked for him, walked for him.”

Burt was equally smitten. “He asked me to marry many times,” Sally reveals, “[but] I knew his heart wasn’t in it. We’d have ended up just feeling terrible.”

Burt disagrees. “I think we would have been very happy,” he says, and he called Sally “the love of my life” while promoting his 2015 autobiography, But Enough About Me. “If anybody asks about that period of my life, it was a wonderful time,” Burt says. “I was — and still am — very proud of her,” he tells Closer.

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These days, Sally jokes “her door is open to romance, but no one’s been knocking,” her friend shares. “People try to fix her up, but she’s doubtful love’s going to come into her life again. It’s not a big priority, and it doesn’t keep her up at night. She’s content with her own company.”

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