Rita Moreno Says President John F. Kennedy Basically Tried To Eye-Bang Her One Night
West Side Story star Rita Moreno has lived a more than colorful life. The Puerto Rican actress, dancer, and singer has starred in iconic films such as Singin’ in the Rain, The King and I, and the cult film Slums of Beverly Hills. She’s also written a book. In 2014 she produced “Rita Moreno: A Memoir,” an autobiography that detailed her life, career, and romantic escapades. According to her memoir, Moreno found herself in entanglements with the likes of Marlon Brando and Elvis Presley.
Recently during an interview at the 2020 AFI Fest, Moreno revealed that to this day she marks John F. Kennedy as one of her paramours.
While speaking with screenwriter Tony Kushner during a 2020 AFI Fest virtual interview reiterated a flirtation she had decades ago with John F. Kennedy.
According to Moreno, she was with her friends when she made eye contact with the 35th president from across the room while attending the grand opening of a hotel in Palm Beach. At the time, the Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony Award winner was with her friend and actress Ann Miller (Kiss Me Kate) the former president who was then running for a senate seat at the time walked into the nightclub and made eye contact with Moreno. Moreno claimed that she did not know who he was at the time however, she could tell he was flirting with her.
“I thought, ‘I think he likes me,’” Moreno explained. “All evening long, every time I looked at his direction…he was giving me a look like you wouldn’t believe. If I had been that kind of girl, I would’ve given him a look, and we would’ve ended up in his hotel room.”
Moreno went on to explain that she learned who Kennedy was when she saw his photo in Life Magazine a few months later.
“That’s the guy who was flirting with me!” Moreno said. “He was a bad boy. He was a bad, bad boy. And I loved every minute of it.”
Moreno has been gleefully open about her past amantes in the past.
In her memoir, Moreno detailed her relationships with both Brando and Presley, explaining that she decided to date the latter to enrage the former. She also revealed that her love for Method actor Brando almost drove her to suicide. According to memoir, she and Brando were in an eight-year-long affair that included emotional abuse and illegal abortion.
“I remember how he spoke to me, how he played the drums, how he made love . . . and how I almost died from loving him,” Moreno wrote at the time in her memoir. “Just meeting him that first day sent my body temperature skyrocketing as though I had been dropped into a very hot bath, and I went into a full-body blush. It was the sort of rush that inspires poetry and songs… He broke my heart and came close to crushing my very spirit with his physical infidelities and, worse, with his emotional betrayals.”
During their years-long relationship, Brando married two women and had children with both of his wives. It was a truth that proved to be exceptionally painful when Moreno became pregnant.
“To my shock and horror, Marlon immediately arranged for an abortion,” she wrote. When Moreno realized soon after that he’d fallen in love with his Mutiny on the Bounty co-star Tarita Teriipia. Moreno, heartbroken and left alone, looked through Brando’s medicine cabinet and found sleeping pills.
“I went to bed to die. This wasn’t a revenge suicide, but a consolation, an escape-from-pain death,” she writes.
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