Monday, August 11, 2008

Nick Nolte

Nick Nolte appeared on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno last week. I hadn't seen him for years and was quite surprised, not so much by by his appearance as by his voice which was not at all as I remembered it. He's obviously been leading life fast and hard for many years! Even so, he does looks better now than he did several years ago, according to photographs at Google Image.

I remember him best in two roles: as Tom Jordache in the 1976 TV mini-series of Irwin Shaw's novel, "Rich Man, Poor Man" and as Tom Wingo in the movie of Pat Conroy's novel, "Prince of Tides" (1986). Both performances remain etched in my memory still, after all these years. He must be one hell of an actor - though in both cases he had one hell of a story to work with.

Nick Nolte was born on 8 February 1941 in Omaha Nebraska at, according to Astrotheme, 10.40am.

His birthday is the same as my Dad's was (different year, of course), and I can't think of two Aquarians more unlike each other! I do notice a few similarities in his and my own Aquarian chart though, we are of the same generation. There are some important differences too - the ones that put him where he is, and me where I am!

There's an excellent biography of Nolte on-line, written by Dominic Wills at

His natal chart:

Positions to note:
Aquarius Sun is square it's ruler Uranus which lies in Taurus.
Also in Taurus, and very close to the Taurus ascendant are Jupiter and Saturn, closely conjoined.
Moon, strongly placed in Cancer trines to one minute, Mercury in Pisces.
Venus and Pluto are in opposition from Aquarius and Leo respectively.
Mars is sextile Sun and quincunx Uranus.

I'll pick out a few comments from the biography linked above, and match them to some of the planetary positions in Nolte's chart.

First things first: Sun in Aquarius (clever but non-conformist, socially aware, sometimes eccentric)

He was a politically active kid, a keen member of the burgeoning counter-culture of the early Sixties and by 1962 had already been busted for selling fake draft cards to underage kids who'd use them as ID. As these were counterfeit government documents he was given a 45-year jail sentence and a $75,000 fine (both suspended) and would be on probation throughout most of the decade (as a convicted felon he still can't vote). But, more by luck than design, he discovered acting before it all went utterly pear-shaped.

The Hulk was another odd move from this most unpredictable of actors. But Nolte always does things his own way. Often seen in public in a cashmere trench-coat and Calvin Klein pyjamas.......


Sun in 11th house square(inharmonious)Sun's ruler Uranus in 1st house. Pluto opposing (challenging) Venus.

He's also said that growing up in the repressed but financially booming Fifties showed him how adults have dark secrets and compete violently - both of which contributed to a deep fear and inner anger in a boy who was already shy and alienated.


Jupiter (excess) and Saturn (work, career) conjoined on the ascendant. Also Mars (aggression) sextile(helpful)Sun, but quincunx (irritable aspect) Uranus his Sun's ruler.

These people(his family) worked hard, and many of Nick's later problems with drink and drugs would spring from his inability to fill the time between jobs.

Weiser actually writing a book called Nick Nolte: Caught In The Act. In it he described their experiences together, and talked of the actor's obsession with perfect scenes, his bursts of rage and the verbal abuse he handed out (none of it was backed by venom, said Weiser, Nolte was just aggressively pursuing good work).

Nolte, he said, would arrive absolutely prepared and would not tolerate anything less than 100% effort

............. his only interest seems to be delivering interesting work

At this point, now in his forties, Nolte was still drinking heavily. He'd always had trouble winding down between roles and would basically stay drunk until his next film began.....


Moon in Cancer (its home sign) trine Mercury in soft, compassionate Pisces

............ he was at his best as a tough guy tortured by his own sensitivity.

Nolte is said to work purely on emotion, all his exhaustive research being aimed at why he's feeling something and how that should be expressed. God knows where he dug up his feelings for the fraught climax of The Prince Of Tides, but his efforts were impressive enough to earn him his first Oscar nomination and win him a Golden Globe.


His drinking and drug taking, I'd hazard a guess, are not purely Neptunian, as those addictions seem to be in most cases, but more a result of having both Jupiter and Saturn sitting on the ascendant as he came into the world.

The theme "Places That Belong To You", oddly, was not included in the movie "Prince of Tides", other than very briefly, as the credits rolled, a disappointment. It's such a lovely song. Here it is, sung by Nick Nolte's co-star in the movie, Barbra Streisand:


Wisewebwoman said...

I take P of T down for an annual viewing. always. I just love it.
The book is even better, more details.
What a troubled soul Nick is, I'd say his liver must be shredded.
Incredibly talented but so self destructive.

Twilight said...

WWW ~~~ I loved the book too - I read it more than once, but lost it in a fire and never did replace it.

He's driven, more than troubled, I think, WWW.

He has such a strong face, yet the ability to portray great sensitivity and heart-wrenching angst. I find that combination really engaging.

I hope his liver isn't too finely shredded. :-(

Laura said...

Hi Twillight,

Thought it would be nice to exchange links between our blogs but couldn't find your contact info.
If you can please contact me

Twilight said...

Hi Laura

I've added your blog to my list of links in the sidebar.