Barbra Streisand‘s long-awaited memoir, My Name Is Barbra, is out now, and it features endless stories about her encounters with people she’s worked with over the years. One such encounter has been excerpted by People, and it involves Barbra’s co-star in Yentl, Mandy Patinkin.
Patinkin played Avigdor, the love interest of Barbra’s character Yentl, in the movie. She writes that a week into shooting the film, which she was also directing, the actor started acting odd, so she called him into her dressing room and asked him what was wrong.
“His face crumpled and he said, ‘I thought we were going to have a more personal relationship,’” she writes. “‘What?’ I had no idea what he was talking about. [He said], ‘I thought we were going to have an affair.’”
She writes that she looked at Patinkin “as if he were crazy” because she was not only married at the time, but would never have an affair with an actor she was directing. Plus, she wasn’t attracted to him.
“I didn’t want to hurt his feelings, so I simply said, ‘I don’t operate that way,’” she writes. “Tears rolled down his cheeks. And I suddenly realized what this was really about. I wasn’t paying enough attention to him as a man… or at least not the kind of attention he wanted.”
Barbra told him to shape up or he was off the movie. She writes Patinkin later revealed he gave her a “hard time” on set because he was scared.
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