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They seem to be perfect for each other, brilliant and graceful, slightly detached Mikhail Baryshnikov and passionate, light and open Jessica Lange. She was called the girlfriend of King Kong after filming in the acclaimed film in 1976, after his enchanting escape and very successful performances as part of the American Ballet Theater, he did not need any performances at all. For seven years Mikhail Baryshnikov and Jessica Lange were together, became the parents of a daughter, but it was an extremely strange union.
They met for the first time in 1976 at an incendiary party of the famous actor Buck Henry. Jessica immediately drew attention to the young man by the pool. He simply struck her with some incredibly light skin color, which seemed almost transparent to the actress.
But Mikhail Baryshnikov did not think about the girl at all until the filmmaker Milos Forman introduced him to the “King Kong girl”. She was charming, however, she immediately confused Baryshnikov with Nureyev. This was not at all surprising, because Jessica did not even think to be interested in ballet, and she did not even know about Baryshnikov's exploits in the field of conquering women's hearts.
That year, Baryshnikov, for the first time after his failure to return from a Canadian tour in the USSR, received an offer to act in films. In Turning Point, he starred with Shirley MacLaine and Anne Bancroft and, it seems, could easily charm any of these beauties, but his attention was captured entirely by the young and daring Jessica, the same “King Kong girl”.
However, she herself was frankly interested in her new acquaintances, although she did not like his slightly arrogant behavior in public. But he was very famous, and those around him treated Baryshnikov even with some servility. The most surprising thing was that no one was embarrassed by his rudeness and disdain. Jessica at that time was weary of attention to herself, and the Russian dancer openly enjoyed his popularity.
Their relationship developed very rapidly, but neither Baryshnikov nor his new girlfriend could imagine where their passion could lead. It seems that they both avoided any mention of love, but just tried to enjoy those moments when they could afford to be together. The novel was passionate, but no one would have dared to call it stable. Their relationship was too unusual by the standards of society.
They have been together for almost seven years. However, there was no question of any marriage or even just joint coexistence. They just met between constant travels, had fun and parted again until the next meeting.
Their dates took place in Hollywood, then in Brazil, then in Paris or in any other beautiful and romantic point of the world. But their meetings rarely went without loud quarrels and stormy showdowns. Many years later, Jessica Lange admits: they could not live without each other, but they were also contraindicated to live together.
Sometimes she wanted to become a married woman, yet she adhered to more conservative views than her chosen one.But Mikhail Baryshnikov did not even think about creating a family, and his beloved, it seems, was not ready to settle down either. Moreover, they were both very far from being faithful to each other, and mutual betrayal did not weigh them at all.
Jessica divorced her husband Paco Grande only in 1981, when she had been in a relationship with Baryshnikov for five years. In addition, her romance with director Bob Foss was, in fact, in full view. The actress did not even try to hide him, as did the director himself, who in 1979 specially for Jessica came up with a small role in his film All This Jazz.
Mikhail Baryshnikov also did not waste time in vain, and in between dates with Jessica he enjoyed spending time with other women, starting short-term romances. But, in spite of everything, they loved each other, otherwise this relationship would not have lasted so long.
The birth of the daughter of Mikhail Baryshnikov and Jessica Lange seems to have complicated the already not very simple relationship. For some reason, it seemed to the actress that the baby would be able to heal her mental wounds and forever rid herself of the aching feeling of loneliness that had haunted her since childhood. But her own interviews on this subject are extremely controversial.
In some, she says that she tried to get pregnant from Baryshnikov for five long years, in others, she claims that Alexandra was an unplanned child, but from this no less desirable. Fortunately, Shura (as the girl was called at home since childhood) was very loved. Now she is 40 years old, and in America she is known as an actress and dancer. Then, in 1981, her birth at first brought Baryshnikov and Lang closer together, but they could not start a family.
A year after the birth of Alexandra, Jessica fell in love again and at that moment she sincerely believed - this is true love that will last forever. An affair with actor Sam Shepard began at a time when she did not break off her relationship with Baryshnikov. However, it was during that period that Lisa Reinhart appeared in the life of a dancer, who became his wife in 2006 and managed to give her husband long before the official marriage of a son and two daughters. Jessica never officially married, and her civil marriage with Sam Shepard, in which two children, a daughter and a son, were born, broke up in 2009.
Mikhail Baryshnikov and Jessica Lange, for sure, could have spent a whole life together, if then, 30 years ago, they took their novel more seriously. In one of his interviews, Baryshnikov even admitted: he sincerely regrets that the affair with Jessica did not become the way they planned together. And he added later - this fact will bother him all his life, because the "King Kong girl" was one of the few women he loved. Thanks to a common daughter, former lovers continue to communicate and always speak of each other with warmth.
He became one of the most famous and successful Soviet dancers abroad, who is called the greatest ballet dancer of the twentieth century and one of the most famous "defectors" who escaped from the USSR. Mikhail Baryshnikov earned fame in the USA as a silent heartthrob, and some Hollywood stars could not resist his charm.
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