Debbie Reynolds says she forgave her one-time rival Elizabeth Taylor, who died Wednesday at age 79, on a boat.
Reynolds was married to Eddie Fisher with two kids when he began seeing the recently widowed Taylor in 1957.
“She went through her younger years of just obtaining what she wanted,” Reynolds told PopEater. “Later in life, she became a little more aware of other people’s feelings.”
It was, in fact, “many years” after the incident that Reynolds was able to forgive Taylor after she ran into her former friend while boarding a ship and both actresses had already remarried.
“I was going to London on the Queen Elizabeth ship and I looked up and I saw tons of luggage going by me and birdcages and dog cages and nurses and I realized Elizabeth was on the same ship as me,” Reynolds said. “I almost changed my mind about going but my husband said, ‘Don’t be silly; we won’t be on the same floor.’ ”
But as luck would have it, they both ended up on the same floor after all.
“So I sent a note to her room and she sent a note back to mine saying that we should have dinner and get this over with and have a good time,” Reynolds said. “Because we were very good friends when we were 17 and went to school together on the MGM lot. And we had a wonderful evening with a lot of laughs.”
Reynolds also was in contact with Taylor two weeks before her death.
“I said, ‘Getting old is really sh––,’ ” Reynolds told Access Hollywood of her conversation with Taylor, who was in the hospital at the time. “And she said, ‘It certainly is. It certainly is, Debbie. This is really tough.’
“I said, ‘Well, you just hang in there now, Elizabeth,’ ” Reynolds goes on. “And she said, ‘I’m really trying.”
In a statement to THR on Wednesday, Reynolds called Taylor “the most glamorous and sexual star of our generation. No one else could equal Elizabeth’s beauty and sexuality. Women liked her and men adored her, and her love for her children is enduring.”