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Burt Reynolds still has regrets about ‘love of my life’ Sally Field (but she has no comment)

Burt Reynolds still regrets messing up his relationship with Sally Field.

Burt Reynolds still regrets messing up his relationship with Sally Field.

(Kevin Winter / Getty Images; Brian Ach / Getty Images)

Burt Reynolds once again is calling Sally Field “the love of my life” -- but she’s not saying very much in return. At least not publicly.

“I miss her terribly,” the 79-year-old movie star tells Vanity Fair in its December issue. “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.”

Field, caught by People on the Women’s Media Center Awards red carpet Thursday, said she hadn’t heard about the article yet, and it seemed like it wouldn’t have mattered if she had. “I have no response, really,” said the actress, 69, “and any response I would have would belong to him.”

Way to keep it classy.

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The “Smokey and the Bandit” costars, who in that 1977 blockbuster had one of the best sex scenes ever without showing any actual sex, just a cowboy hat that was worth a thousand words, started dating in the late ‘70s and broke up after about five years together.

In April 1979, when they’d been together three years, Reynolds talked to People about why they hadn’t yet moved in together. He said her sons from her first marriage were one reason that hadn’t happened, explaining, “I want them to have some kind of values. I don’t want them to think of me as this guy who moved in with their mother.”

The actor, who’d been married for a couple of years in the ‘60s, said at the time that he planned to get married but didn’t know when. “The kids and I have a great relationship, but we haven’t had enough time together. Am I supposed to tell Sally to drop them off and screech away?” He also noted that the boys were more important to her than he was, “which is the way it should be.”

Reynolds went on to marry Loni Anderson in 1988, and that union ended in 1993 with an epic divorce that still makes headlines from time to time.

The new Vanity Fair interview, which coincides with the upcoming release of Reynolds’ new memoir, is hardly the first time Reynolds has expressed regret over his relationship with Field. The topic has come up again and again over the years, although a story from earlier this year about them finally walking down the aisle together was complete bunk.

“I was the dumbest ... ever to walk away from her,” he told People in 1996 when it ran a story about Field a couple of years after her divorce from second husband Alan Greisman. “We just got together at the wrong time.”

Apparently, they’d spoken in 1994 before his autobiography came out. “I also told Sally that she was the love of my life,” he told the magazine for its article about Field, “and that I hoped she finally realized how special she is.”

He also opened up to Piers Morgan about her in a 2011 interview, during which Morgan quizzed him about whether he’d ever wanted a 65-year marriage like his parents had.

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“Had I been smarter, you know, with one lady ... I still would be together with her. Sally. Without a doubt.”

When the host noted that each had proposed to the other during their years together, Reynolds said, “I asked her at the wrong time, she asked me at the wrong time. I missed out on that one, that’s for sure.”

Looking wistful, he continued.

“I think we would have been very happy ... I’d like to think so. I’m not sure she’d say so. She’s just a very special woman. I really handled that one pretty bad.”

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Follow Christie D’Zurilla on Twitter @theCDZ and Google+. Follow the Ministry of Gossip on Twitter @LATcelebs.


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