- Actor Burt Reynolds has died at 82.
- In 2016, he spoke with Business Insider about his nude spread for Cosmopolitan magazine in 1972, which circulated on Twitter in the wake of his passing.
- “I wish I hadn’t done it because I wasn’t taken as a serious actor,” Reynolds said at the time.
On Thursday, acting legend Burt Reynolds died at 82 and the entertainment world mourned and shared remembrances of a true giant of the screen.
Reynolds’ acting career, which spanned decades and hits like “Boogie Nights” and “Deliverance,” was so iconic even the list of roles he turned down is impressive, and includes Han Solo and James Bond.
But there’s one image that comes to many people’s minds when thinking about Reynolds, and it began to be passed around on Twitter immediately following news of his passing: his 1972 nude spread for Cosmopolitan magazine.
Cosmo tweeted it back out Thursday:
— Cosmopolitan (@Cosmopolitan) September 6, 2018
But Reynolds had regrets about the spread. In 2016, Business Insider’s Jason Guerrasio spoke to Reynolds about it.
“I wish I hadn’t done it because I wasn’t taken as a serious actor,” Reynolds said. “I think ‘Deliverance’ suffered because of it and a lot of other things and I wasn’t pleased that I did it, but at the time I wanted everyone to understand the humour of it.”
In 1972, Reynolds was “flattered and intrigued” to be asked to pose nude by editor Helen Gurley Brown, he wrote in Cosmo in 2015. “I wish I could say that I wanted to show my support for women’s rights, but I just thought it would be fun.”
Reynolds was no stranger to being a sex symbol, however. Even at age 80 – in 2016 – Reynolds had a woman at a screening throw a bra to him on stage.
“I was taken aback by it,” Reynolds told Business Insider at the time. “And with the bra incident, I didn’t know who to give it to, and it didn’t fit me. I looked at it, and if it was a double D, I might have tried to find out who she was.”
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