60 Photos of Sally Field Like You've Never Seen Her Before

By Sarah Norman | September 11, 2023

Sally Field's Romance with Burt Reynolds Was Toxic at Times

Sally Field might be small, but she is mighty. Equal parts cute – as demonstrated from her performances in Gidget and The Flying Nun – and feisty like her Norma Rae character and strong like the characters she played in Steel Magnolias and Places in the Heart. Let’s take a look through the life and career of this effervescent icon of the American cinema to see why we like her… we really like her.

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To the tabloid media, Field and Reynolds seemed like a Hollywood power couple, but in Field's memoir, In Pieces, she provided an inside look at their relationship. Sally, who had been abused as a child and recently divorced, was simultaneously terrified and empowered to have the biggest sex symbol of the 1970s interested in her. But she writes that Reynolds was insecure and jealous. Filled with toxic masculinity, Reynolds belittled Sally’s acting skills, turned controlling, and expected her to take care of him.

Sally Field, Ready to Revamp Her Image and Take More Dramatic Roles

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After the cancellation of her 1973-1974 television show, The Girl with Something Extra, Field studied with renowned acting teacher Lee Strasberg at the Actors Studio in hopes of honing her acting chops and preparing for more challenging roles. Strasberg became Field's mentor. Under his guidance and tutelage, she expanded her skills as a performer, but more importantly, Strasberg helped her move beyond her former image. It took a little while before the studios took notice of her more mature image, but Field finally got her chance to prove her chops.