Paul Newman, a Hollywood legend, had a life filled with enormous success and achievements. From his remarkable acting career to his philanthropic endeavors, Newman was truly an icon. However, there were two regrets that haunted him, both of which were deeply personal.

A Father’s Disappointment

Newman’s first regret stemmed from his strained relationship with his father. He felt that his father saw him as a failure before he attained stardom in Hollywood. Looking back on those early days, Newman admitted, “I think he thought I didn’t show much promise in those days, and I tend to agree with him.” Sadly, his father passed away before witnessing his son’s immense success, leaving Newman with the haunting regret that his father died believing he was a disappointment.

A Broken Bond with His Son

Newman’s second regret revolved around his relationship with his only son, Scott. Scott faced a troubled upbringing and struggled to find his own identity while living in the custody of Newman’s first wife. He tried to make a name for himself in the acting and stunt world, but always lived in the shadow of his famous father. In one poignant moment, Scott confessed, “They expect you to be like him, or they try to get to him through me … but I don’t have his blue eyes. I don’t have his talent. I don’t have anything that’s me.”

Scott’s life was marred by alcoholism, prescription drug use, and other substance abuse issues. Tragically, he passed away from an accidental overdose at the young age of 28. Newman deeply regretted not having a closer relationship with his son, admitting, “I knew he drank too much and [medicated] himself, but I didn’t know how to open a door into him. I don’t think I ever hugged Scott or patted him on the arm or back or rump — the things fathers do.”

Honoring His Son’s Memory

In the wake of Scott’s death, Newman took action to commemorate his son’s life. In 1980, he founded the Scott Newman Foundation, an organization committed to raising awareness about substance abuse and preventing others from enduring a similar tragic fate.

Despite the immense success and incredible contributions Newman made throughout his life, these two regrets added a deeply personal and poignant dimension to his story. They serve as a reminder that even Hollywood legends have their own struggles and battles to face. As we celebrate Newman’s achievements, let us also remember the lessons his regrets teach us about the importance of family and connection.