Deep in the weeds of show business blogging, in the comments under a blind gossip item, the actor Robert Downey Jr. may have just laid a venomous bite on Kirk Douglas, accusing the legendary actor of raping actress Natalie Wood.
Either that or hundreds of people have just been conned by a massive fraud who wants us to believe famous screen stars obsess over anonymous blog comments (as, in fairness, some have been known to do). The purported Downey commenter did provide the correct home phone number of Wood's daughter as evidence of his own authenticity, for whatever that's worth.
Here's how things unfolded: Over on the Hollywood blog Crazy Days and Nights, mysterious longtime commenter "Himmmm" today posted repeatedly under a blind item about a longtime actor who slept with an underaged teenager, abused women, and pressured them into getting abortions. Himmmm, who online gossipers recently decided was Downey Jr, claimed actor Ryan O'Neal was the one who did those things, and went on to out another purported woman abusing scumbag, claiming Kirk Douglas repeatedly raped actress Natalie Wood in a hotel room decades ago, then laughed at and mocked her.
Rumors about Douglas raping Wood have been around for years , but Himmmm's cred within the blog as a Hollywood insider , the level of detail in his story, and his insinuation that he is Downey Jr. all lent his claim a certain standing, at least on the site.
Himmmm started with O'Neal, lamenting "the HELL he's caused me and so many other" (O'Neal and Downey Jr. co-starred in a 1989 movie) and claiming O'Neal had managed "to piss off Steven Speilberg, Aaron Spelling, Tippi Hedren, Brian Depalma, Robert Evans, Charlie Bludhorn, Lew Wasserman, and about 90% of the then-powerful William Morris Agency."
Himmmm's initial comment was well received by other commenters. As his stuff usually is: Not only does Himmmm often seem to have inside details, he has insinuated in the past that his account is shared between a "movie star," "rock star" and two "true creative geniuses."
Today he was clearly in movie star mode. After lashing O'Neal, Himmmm promised "later on I'm going to share with all of you a story (or two) I promise will make your heads explode."
The Kirk Douglas rape accusation
He delivered, laying out three long postings in page three of the comments (part 1, part 2, part 3.) This was the purported Kirk Douglas-Natalie Wood story. It begins with an introduction describing how Wood, wanting edgier roles as a rebellious teenager, had a consensual affair with a married, older director to win a part. Other actors then thought she would sleep with anyone for a part. One such actor, Douglas, allegedly went well beyond trying to barter for sex:
[This story] concerns one of the biggest male stars ever, and one of the most beloved female stars to ever live…
One day she was invited to meet with this movie star about an upcoming major role. This man was a legend already, and was very powerful. … Thinking [s]he herself was powerful and savvy, she accepted the invite. In his hotel room. She never saw it coming.
Without even discussing the film, this actor — drunk already — began making a pass at her. She politely declined, and excused herself. He wouldn't have it. He literally threw her down, slapped the hell out of her, and ripped her clothes off. He shouted obscenities at her, continually punched and held her arms so tight he left scars and bruises.
He raped her repeatedly, spitting on her, and did permanent damage to her body. She was bleeding everywhere, with a battered face. She passed out. When she came to, the actor was still in the room gloating, and told her to come see him tomorrow night and he might give her the role. He laughed at her as she fell down, her legs so wobbly and weak. She gathered her torn clothes, and tried to walk out of the hotel and to her car - blood and semen running down her legs and bruises already forming on her face.
She could barely make it back home in her car. She wanted to kill herself, so ashamed of what happened. The damage to her psyche was permanent, and haunted her forever.
…Her mom said she must have made the actor mad and offended him. They called a doctor, who took her to the hospital secretly to have her treated… The studio knew, and did nothing. After all, the star actor was a money machine. … She grew into an amazing woman with a legendary career. But she never forgot, or forgave, and never got over what happened.
She never named the star actor publicly, but her friends and family knew the truth. Even after marriage and kids, if she saw this actor anywhere - she would almost convulse and cry. And worst of all, Hollywood and the world continued to honor him, pay him, and treat him like a king.
Himmmm went on to name the actor in question:
Today, he's still alive and barely holding on. But those who know the truth are still hoping and praying he will rot in hell for eternity. That all his good deeds and donations will never mask the truth…
So when the time comes, and the now 95-year -ld Kirk Douglas, the superstar actor, finally dies, there will be tributes and honors about him. Just remember that he is a monster who never repented, apologized, nor showed any sorrow for destroying the lives of others. Especially the life of that young beloved actress named Natalie Wood.
Accuser claims to be Robert Downey Jr. (basically)
Our sister site Jezebel this week speculated and relayed the speculation of others that Himmmm might be Downey Jr. In these new postings, he seemed to confirm this, inasmuch as an anonymous blog commenter can confirm anything, giving clues that amount to an outright claim he is Downey Jr.. These included Wood's daughter's home phone number.
This is the money paragraph where Himmmm attempts to out himself as Downey Jr. (from part 2):
I worked with Natalie's daughter on a film in the late 90s. Like her mother, Natasha is an amazing woman and amazing actress who is a great person in every way.
I know a lot of you have speculated that I'm some nobody nut-case pretending to be someone else. Pretending to be a movie star when in fact I'm not. I think that's kind of hilarious. But if you want to call Natasha and ask her the name of the male actor she co-starred with in a movie with Heather Graham, then go for it. Call her at home if you want to but be polite. Her number is: ac 310 Four [last six digits redacted]. And remember, she's NOT in on this so don't blame or interrogate her.
The movie Himmmm mentions is almost certainly Two Girls and a Guy, the only 1990s film by Wood's daughter Natsha Gregson Wagner in which the actress co-starred with Heather Graham. The film's other co-star was Downey Jr. Recall how Himmmm claimed Wood's "friends and family knew the truth" about the rape. So the idea is Wagner knew about the attack on her mom and grew close enough to Downey Jr. after working with him to vent about it.
The number Himmmm provided for Gregson Wagner does, in fact, belong to a person in Malibu matching her name and age, according to a public records database. (The person with Wagner's name and age who owns that number and a related cell phone number did not return calls to both numbers seeking comment.)
Of course, the number also appears in a few stray internet white pages searches under the name "Natasha Wagner."
Which is to say, this could all be some sort of elaborate hoax by someone with an axe to grind, a knack for sounding authoritative about Hollywood, and way too much time on his hands. Someone who wants us to believe, as Himmmm put it, that "you'd be surprised how many actors, filmmakers, and musicians read this blog. Some even comment." And someone smart enough to pin his impulsive, reckless, obsessive comments on an impulsive, reckless, obsessive actor like Downey Jr.
Either way, the Crazy Days and Nights crowd is going bananas. Not only did we receive two different tips about this within one hour of Himmmm's comment going up, the comments' associated thread has grown to 827 postings, from around 600 when Himmmm first posted his Douglas allegations, and less than 200 when he posted his comments on O'Neal.
Most of the comments about Himmmm's Douglas allegation are supportive, along the lines of this one, which read in part, "To Himmmm... you rock dude. SO SO SO SO SO much utter respect for you and your cojones to say what you've said." Or this one, reading, "All I can say is a big THANK YOU … I can only speculate on your identity, but if you are who most people think you are, I am happy that you have chosen to be one of us here at this site.
Others were more skeptical, like this one, which read, "The Kirk Douglas/Natalie Wood story is well known. It's described in multiple biographies of Natalie Wood, without naming the actor, but it's not a secret. Let's not pretend that Himmmm just revealed something spectacular."
Whether "Himmmm just revealed something spectacular" depends, in the end, on whether he really is Downey Jr., and whether he really did get his information, as he implies but never quite says, from Natalie Wood's daughter after co-starring with her in a movie 15 years ago. For all the hubub, it seems unlikely a star - even Robert Downey Jr. - would make accusations this recklessly after having his real name associated with his anonymous handle. Himmmm concluded his allegations by signing off from Crazy Days and Nights forever, but, ludicrous as it may seem, something tells us the real-life Downey Jr. is going to have to answer questions about these comments with more than an internet kiss off.
Update: Himmmm's comments about Douglas specifically were "removed by the author" within an hour and a half of this post going up.
Update: Downey Jr.'s spokesman denied he was Himmmm.