Feature

Joely Richardson’s lingering heartache

When Natasha Richardson died last March after suffering a freak head injury in a skiing accident, Joely says she felt as though she’d lost part of herself. The two sisters were born just 20 months apart and grew up practically inseparable.

Joely Richardson is still mourning the loss of her sister, Natasha Richardson, said Justine Picardie in Red. Born just 20 months apart, the daughters of actress Vanessa Redgrave and director Tony Richardson grew up practically inseparable, weathering their parents’ divorce, their father’s death from AIDS, and other crises. “We were each other’s constant,” says Richardson. “All our reference points were joint ones.” When Natasha died last March after suffering a freak head injury in a skiing accident, Joely says she felt as though she’d lost part of herself. “It felt as if my DNA had split. It was as if someone had put a bomb inside me and exploded it.” The grief she experienced was “violent and terrifying. It’s like a dinosaur has got your head in its mouth, and is shaking your body. You’re lucky if you can walk through it.” She’s coming to terms now, but says she still can’t bring herself to use the word “death” in reference to Natasha. “I don’t know why I can’t say it. But I do understand it when people say ‘passing,’ because I suppose we are all just passing through life; there’s no finality about it. That makes me feel better.”

Recommended

The climate summit that could save the planet
COP26.
Briefing

The climate summit that could save the planet

The 'economics of global warming' are different in Russia
Russian Arctic.
brrrrr?

The 'economics of global warming' are different in Russia

Supply chain problems from ships to shelves, by the numbers
Port of Los Angeles
Blue Christmas

Supply chain problems from ships to shelves, by the numbers

The cost of climate inaction
A thermometer.
Picture of Ryan CooperRyan Cooper

The cost of climate inaction

Most Popular

Manchin clarifies he offered to become an independent if it helped Democrats
Joe Manchin.
he said, he said

Manchin clarifies he offered to become an independent if it helped Democrats

Democrats' months of dithering
President Biden.
Picture of Ryan CooperRyan Cooper

Democrats' months of dithering

Senate Republicans block Joe Manchin's voting rights bill
Joe Manchin
No Joe

Senate Republicans block Joe Manchin's voting rights bill