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Blonde-haired, blue-eyed star made a splash in Hollywood—see how she looks now

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Kathleen Turner, a renowned actress, gained popularity in the 1980s due to her powerful presence and striking beauty, earning her a place among Hollywood’s most attractive stars. Her resilience has played a significant role in helping her navigate the various ups and downs throughout her life.

Turner had a challenging upbringing in a family of four children, growing up in locations such as London and Venezuela. Tragedy struck early in her life when her father suddenly died while tending to the lawn at their Hampstead residence.

A month following her father’s death, Kathleen and her family were forced to leave the UK by the foreign service. Grieving their loss, they relocated to Springfield, Missouri. As an adult, Turner found solace in pursuing an acting career in New York. She experienced success on stage, but her major breakthrough occurred when she was cast as the femme fatale in the 1981 film “Body Heat.”

In 1984, Turner had the opportunity to co-star with Michael Douglas in the well-known movie “Romancing the Stone.” At the time, Douglas was going through a difficult separation from his wife Diandra. During filming, Turner and Douglas developed a romantic connection with each other.

Kathleen Turner recalled her experience with Michael Douglas, describing it as a time when they were falling in love, with passionate glances and intense flirting. However, Diandra’s presence reminded her that he was still married. Turner later married property developer Jay Weiss in 1984, whom she met during filming. Soon after, they welcomed their only daughter, Rachel Ann Weiss, born on October 14, 1987.

Sadly, as the couple began raising their daughter, their relationship started to deteriorate.

“I’d make the movie companies give me long weekends or provide extra tickets so my daughter and husband could come to me. But there was a sense in the marriage the effort was all on his side, which made me feel guilty. It was one of the reasons it ended. I started to feel very oppressed. I thought, ‘Hang on a minute, you’ve done very well out of being married to me also,’” Kathleen explained.

In 2005, Turner starred as Martha in the Broadway revival of “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” and it was then that their marital problems came to a head. Turner became incredibly busy while acting in eight shows a week, and it appeared that Weiss wanted no time with her when she was home.

The two divorced amicably during that time, and Turner earned a Tony award nod for her time as Martha.

Kathleen Turner enjoyed a thriving film career in the 1980s, even earning an Oscar nomination in 1987 for her role in “Peggy Sue Got Married.” She appeared in numerous blockbusters during that time, including three movies alongside Michael Douglas.

However, in the 1990s, Turner faced a major health challenge when her neck locked, preventing her from turning her head. Additionally, her hands swelled to the point where she couldn’t use them. Describing the situation as crippling, Turner reflected on the impact of losing her physical abilities, even if just temporarily. She realized how much she took her athleticism and freedom of movement for granted, which led her to question her identity when she could no longer rely on those attributes.

Kathleen Turner’s health struggles were caused by rheumatoid arthritis, a condition that leads to inflammation in the joints and chronic pain that can be difficult to manage. Upon her diagnosis, Turner was terrified, fearing she might end up in a wheelchair and be unable to act – something she considered her life’s purpose.

To cope with the constant pain, Turner resorted to pills and alcohol. Although these helped her continue working, her reliance on vodka led to difficulties during rehearsals, such as passing out while preparing for the 2002 stage production of “The Graduate.”

After the actress’s show ended, she checked herself into rehab to deal with her alcoholism. However, she was informed that her issue was not with alcohol but with managing her medication and its side effects. To manage her pain, she has since turned to yoga and pilates.

Despite occasionally working in film and television, the actress has shifted her focus towards her stage career, particularly as she has gotten older. She has returned to her roots and starred in productions such as “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” in her forties. The actress recognized that theatre offered better roles for older actors, and she takes pride in this foresight.

In addition to her stage career, the actress has found time to pursue her passions by volunteering at Amnesty International and working for Planned Parenthood of America. She has been a vocal advocate for women’s rights throughout her life, as reflected in Gloria Feldt’s 2008 memoir of her, “Send Yourself Roses.”

The actress believes in empowering women, especially those who are financially independent and reinventing themselves. She supports this philosophy and her beliefs are evident in her actions. She wants to encourage and increase the number of women who are able to do so, and her work with various organizations reflects this goal.

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