Robert de Niro is one of America's legendary TV stars and lived a life full of eccentricities. However, he also became tied to several controversial stories, including an abortion he reportedly demanded from a former lover.
Robert de Niro has always been passionate about his career. Before appearing on TV, the seasoned actor would devote himself to studying the character intricately, making him play the role better.
He is an intelligent man who immerses himself into his characters, bringing them to life, thereby capturing his fans' hearts, whether he played the good guy or bad guy.
Actor Robert De Niro attends the 'Once Upon A Time' Premiere during 65th Annual Cannes Film Festival during at Palais des Festivals on May 18, 2012 | Photo: Getty Images
De Niro's reign cuts through generations. He has also earned accolades from his co-stars, awards from the movie industry, and love from a legion of fans.
Despite the respect and admiration he has had thanks to his skills and meticulousness, the actor has lived a reality filled with different tales, including his relationships with women and ferocious hunger for drug-fueled parties.
The "Godfather" alum was not only a casanova, but he loved being in control. During his time with one of his lovers, Helena Springs, De Niro demanded a second abortion by intimidating her. A decision he lived to regret.
Robert De Niro arrives Party at the mayor during the 64th International Cannes Film Festival on May 19, 2011 | Photo: Shutterstock
DE NIRO, THE LADIES' MAN
According to a 2014 biography titled "De Niro: A Life" by author Shawn Levy, the actor found it hard to ward off his demons: womanizing and eccentric parties. During his younger years, he established a pattern of being with several women; he was good-looking and successful after all.
De Niro mastered the act of womanizing simultaneously with his acting skills. From the time he left his home to pursue a career in acting, he ensured to score himself a point or two with any female he encountered.
Whether they were his colleagues in acting classes or women from clubs or showbiz bars, the on-screen god knew how to catch his women and often succeeded. His preferences were always successful women in the entertainment industry.
Eliona Cela, Raphael De Niro, Robert Whitman, Hannah Carnes, and Aislinn Carnes celebrating the 35th Anniversary of Purple Rain on June 25, 2019 | Photo: Getty Images
De Niro dated Sally Kirkland during their time as students at the Actors Studios in New York. He also had a lingering affair with Carole Mallory, an actress and model who later became novelist Norman Mailer's long-time partner.
These affairs had a short-term duration as most women could not deal with the drama tag. De Niro was always quick to throw tantrums when his women disagreed with him, making them emotional. In the end, he tried to remedy the situation by buying them gifts — perfumes.
Robert De Niro during his TV appearance in the "Today" show in 2020. | Photo: Getty Images
DE NIRO'S TIME WITH HELEN SPRINGS
The actor mostly trailed his women, loved to watch them until they noticed him enough to collect his phone number. During one of the womanizing sprees, the "Godfather" star followed Helena Springs through the streets of Los Angeles in 1979.
Spring was a talented young woman who backed up famous singers like Bob Dylan, Bette Midler, and Elton John, so she was accustomed to a few big names in the industry.
Robert De Niro at the 2017 Hudson River Park Annual Gala on October 12, 2017 | Photo: Getty Images
The Hollywood superstar followed her in his convertible until she looked his way. Then, he asked for her number, and Spring, initially hesitant, revealed that she agreed to have lunch with him.
They both fixed their first date as a dinner date and eventually spent the night in each other's company. It marked the beginning of their romance, which led to two pregnancies.
LOVE TURNED SOUR
Springs's first time as a pregnant woman was kept discreet. She terminated the pregnancy without informing her lover. But by the second time, the backup singer decided to keep the child.
She talked to De Niro about keeping the baby, and it led to a somewhat intimidating conversation with him demanding an abortion. This time, Spring refused, and as expected, their love went sour. In 1982, she gave birth to her first child, Nina Nadeja De Niro.
While the actor refused to be a part of the child's life, he settled the mother by paying the sum of fifty thousand dollars to care for the child's needs before bailing out of their lives (although he continued to give some financial support and only saw Nina a few times).
Springs maintained her distance and did not seek further help from her child's father. The biography author claimed that it was due to her low self-esteem, which stemmed from her race.
Levy added that black women felt privileged to court handsome white, successful men and often dance to their tune.
DE NIRO'S FAMOUS COURT CASE
Irrespective of what people thought of Springs, she proved to be a bold lady, ready to pursue what she claimed rightly belonged to her.
Ten years after her fall out with De Niro, she slammed the actor with court documents; at the time, he had stopped paying child support. She was married into the Lisandrello family, a fact that didn't stop her from demanding child support from her ex-partner.
Before the court granted this request, the "Godfather" actor submitted a blood test proving he was not the child's father. Springs continued to ask for money, claiming that De Niro had assured her daughter of being her biological father; he also acted caring for some time.
ROBERT DE NIRO
Robert de Niro was the brilliant actor in "Raging Bull," "Godfather," and "Taxi Driver; New York, New York. To this day, the TV star continues to wow his audience with his jaw-dropping performance.
But amid his quintessential talent, and intriguing love life, including two failed marriages, he is a loving and supportive father to his six children, both biological and non-biological.
De Niro was welcomed into fatherhood when his first wife, Diahnne Abbott, a professional singer and actress, gave birth to their first child. They were married in 1976 and had a son named Raphael. He also adopted his ex-wife's daughter from a former marriage.
His second and third biological children, twin sons, were born during his relationship with model Toukie Smith through IVF and surrogacy. The former lovers were an item for eight years but never exchanged vows.
The next time De Niro fell in love was in 1997, and he married his beloved, actress Grace Hightower. They divorced in 1999, shortly after welcoming their son, Elliot.
The couple later patched things up and remained together for about two decades while they welcomed a daughter, Helen, before calling it quits again.
Hightower and the "Raging Bull" star are yet to finalize their divorce after filing it in 2018. The divorce drains the actor financially because he struggles to keep up with his estranged wife's luxurious lifestyle.
De Niro has, however, proven that nothing can keep him down for long, not a reckless past life or regular payment of spousal support. He appears to be doing just fine and was recently spotted with a new flame while enjoying a European getaway.
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