Rudy in Roma, 1923

What a magical time in my life, savoring the delights of the capital I had not previously known, and fêted, upon occasion, in that pursuit. As you know, Natacha did not accompany me in all of those days, having decided to return to Juan-les-Pins to be with family. So my task was to drink, figuratively ‘boire un coup’ ~ taste the fruits of my renown, and brush elbows with the movers and shakers of local and international film industry. I dreamed of doing a part in Europe, in Rome in particular, some Italian-based theme or project. Don’t think it did not cross my mind! Well, the visit to Nero (i.e. Emil Jannings on the set of “Quo Vadis”) was a soul-awakening experience, to what my home country had to offer, on a deeper, more spiritual level, which I was ready to comprehend then and there, and which I had been unaware of, for the most part, during my youth in Castellaneta and Taranto.

How grand was Rome, how inspiring its monuments, history at every turn, under every block of pavement! Bravo! I listened and I learned. This is what I did there: really saw, and really heard. In the sound of the crickets there is the murmur of the Senate and people of Rome, the roar of Vox Populi!” ~ Rudolph Valentino


Rudy and the Hudnuts

Rudy, speaking about his in-laws, Natacha’s mother and step-father (Richard Hudnut, owner of a cosmetics company.) “Was I ever dazzled by their wealth, ébloui, as the French might say? Of course, but not in any duplicitous way, and never with any particular goal in mind. I enjoyed watching them revel in their riches, that’s all, just as I did in my own ~ whenever I could! I never sought their largesse and neither was it offered, except in small doses such as tokens of appreciation and hospitality. Our relations had a ‘gemütlich’ quality to them, a generosity of spirit, which is what I really valued.” ~ Rudolph Valentino


Blanca, Jean, and Pola

Three ‘Significant Others.’ From his current vantage point, the Valentino essence describes some of the dynamics he had with each one.

Blanca de Saulles: “Yes, I had feelings for her ~ a young man’s passion, an unattainable woman, someone who could teach me a thing or two. We tangoed in a sexual way but did not mate in the true sense because we were not soul-compatible. But we did dabble in sensuality, on the dance floor and off. She tickled my fancy, that’s all. Taught me about “le haut monde” too (High Society.”)

Jean Acker: “She was a pal more than anything else, like the character “Moran” I would say ~ someone to do things with while commiserating on the vagaries of life. Not a soul mate but a gift, nonetheless. Embarrassing it was to marry without a wedding night but she did spark me to delve into my own psyche as a result, to reflect on what I really wanted. We reconnected, as you know, later in life. A good person though in that life-time her personality was somewhat obtuse.”

Pola Negri: “Pola/NOLA. She was like the city of New Orleans, an endless “fête,” always ready for a lark. Restless she was and high-strung but very secure in herself and adept at creating an image. She helped me burnish mine, to cement my place in the pantheon of lovers. She doted on me to a certain extent and I basked in the attention, a much different dynamic than I had with Natacha, who was more cerebral and reserved.” ~ Rudolph Valentino




June Mathis

Question: did you attend séances with June Mathis?

“Yes, I did indeed attend a few with her, voice mediums and more informal gatherings where we called out to those on the Other Side, imploring them to respond. And talk they did, though not always in complete sentences. June was quite a fan of automatic writing, a ‘seraphine’ of sorts. Had an angelic voice too, her inner self I mean, in tune with the ages. It was old hat for her, that sort of work.” ~ Rudolph Valentino


Natacha Rambova

Question: as Rudolph Valentino, did you have a true love?

“My Mother was one and in her fashion, Natacha. And of course there were others too, glimmers I would call them rather than full-fledged loves, of all colors and stripes. Yes, like a multi-colored flag is love, any part of which is extremely rewarding. We all have some experience with true love while in the body. That is just one of the things we come to know more viscerally. Ecco fatto (there you have it.”) ~ Rudolph Valentino

Question: are you and Natacha in contact now?

“We are not together per se in the Great Beyond. Our work has been completed. Actually, we finished what we had to as Rudy and Winifred, who she really was ~ as you know. We can communicate freely in the Astral, as desired, but we do not gravitate. I would liken it to old friends/flames who keep in touch from time to time. That said, we have tender spots for each other. She communicates with some in the flesh also, mostly around the arts and creativity. Muse-like she is and still with a preponderance of female energy.” ~ Rudolph Valentino