Zsa Zsa Gabor’s Last Interview
with Chaunce Hayden
Pull quote: Don’t compare me to Ivana Trump. Please don’t compare me to her.
Chaunce Hayden: In your opinion, are the days of glamor gone and forgotten?
Zsa Zsa Gabor: When it comes to women, it’s true that Hollywood is not as elegant as it used to be. They don’t have those big beautiful parties any more like the one I’m having for my daughter’s wedding. On all the invitations it will say “Ladies, Gorgeous, Gentlemen, Dashing.” I like for the women to dress up, why not? But these days, people are afraid to wear jewelry. Every time you open the paper, you read about another murder. They’ll kill you for a couple of dollars.
You think, then, crime has something to do with the stars playing down their wealth?
I don’t know. It’s very expensive to give a big party these days, but it was always expensive. What can I tell you? I always give big, beautiful parties and I always will.
Don’t you agree that the bigger than life film stars like the Cary Grants, the Humphrey Bogarts and the Joan Crawfords have all but disappeared, leaving us with a bunch of one-film wonders?
Well, there are some wonderful actors today, but the actresses… today when you see them in real life they look like nothing.
Like Michelle Pfeiffer. When you see her in films, she looks so wonderful, but if you see her on the streets, you wouldn’t even know who she is. She’s got sloppy long hair, sloppy outfits, I don’t know. I have some sloppy outfits too and I love them, but you still have to hold yourself a certain way. I hope Michelle’s not mad at me because I’m a big admirer of her but she could dress up a little bit more. Maybe a navy blue blazer or something. Today the models and society women are the big stars. They still look wonderful, well dressed and elegant. But the actresses, forget about it. Look at what Julia Roberts got married in. It looks like a nightgown.
How is your relationship with your husband, Prince Frederick Von Anhalt?
He is wonderful. We are very happy. We’ve been married seven years now and we went together three years before I married him. So we’ve been together ten years.
Is that the longest you’ve ever been with a man?
Sure. The longest before this was two or three years. And the last marriage before Frederick was only one day. It was ridiculous.
You’re referring to husband number seven, Count Felipe de Alba?
That has got to be a world record.
[Film Director] John Houston was at the wedding. I met him a couple of years later and I told him, “You know, John, the marriage to Felipe only lasted one day.” He said, “You know, Zsa Zsa, I didn’t even give you that long.” (Laughing)
That’s very funny, but tell me, how does it feel now to be a princess?
It’s wonderful but I don’t feel any different. It’s wonderful in Europe because they call you Royal Highness. Otherwise I really don’t give a damn about it. But I’m very happy that I have him because he’s wonderful. To tell you the truth, I would prefer to live here in America and just be plain old Zsa Zsa Gabor.
I don’t think you’ll ever be considered just plain old Zsa Zsa.
Thank you, darling.
Despite all your accomplishments, lately you seem to be remembered most for the now infamous “Slap heard around the world,” when you were convicted for striking a Los Angeles police officer. What exactly happened on that fateful day?
It was utterly stupid. For example the day before yesterday, I found out I’m being sued by a woman who doesn’t even know me. These people just want the publicity. With the slap incident, the whole thing became a farce. I never hit the policeman and he was unbelievably rude to me.
He used language that no man should use toward a woman and for no reason, except that the tag on my car had expired. I didn’t speed, I didn’t do anything. And when he became rude, I just forgot he was a policeman and instead, looked at him as just a man who was insulting me.
So I lifted my arm but I never hit him. I should have, though.
Did anyone ever tell you that you remind them of Ivana Trump?
No, thank God! Don’t compare me to Ivana Trump. Please don’t compare me to her. I’m Hungarian and she’s Czechoslovakian. I do not wish to be compared to her in no way.
What is it about Ivana Trump that upsets you?
I don’t approve of her. Even though she’s a very bright woman, I think she dresses much too flashy. I also think her hair is ridiculous and I think her behavior with Donald was very stupid. All she cares about is money, money, money. I hate that! She is exactly the opposite of me. She dresses too flashy and her hair is too flashy. I know that she wants to be like Zsa Zsa Gabor but she doesn’t have the education or the background that I have. Please don’t ever compare me to that woman!
I’ll never make that mistake again, I promise.
Is it true you played ice hockey?
(Laughing) When I was a little girl in Budapest all the girls played. I was also the junior champion in fencing and ping-pong. But fencing was my forté.
I hope you’re not still playing hockey.
No, but I do play polo which is even more dangerous.
I want to thank you for sitting down and spending some time with me.
You know, you’re a very good interviewer. I never really talk to anybody like this. Most people ask such insane questions that I normally answer back just as crazy. I like to be flip, you know. When I was about 12 years old, there was a famous Hungarian writer who said to my mother in French, “This child was born to shock the middle class.” Now I want to ask you one question.
What is your opinion of Michael Jackson?
Personally I think that in his mind he’s still 10 years old and that’s why he wants to play around with children. I love children myself but why should a 38 year old man sleep with little boys. It’s sick.
Do you think the parents of those children are any less sick?
You know what it is. The parents see a rich star and what can you say… they’re more guilty than Michael. Darling, look at how he looks. He doesn’t want to be black and he can’t be white. I think he looks awful. I mean I just think that Michael is a very sick man. I think Madonna is just as bad. She’s also such a big talent and yet she behaves like a street walker. And explain to me Elizabeth Taylor. You know she is my next door neighbor, but I can’t understand why she would defend him. Do you think it’s for publicity?
You would know that better than me.
Someone told me that Michael’s financially backing one of her perfumes. I actually like Liz but I don’t admire her at all because I know so many things about her. You know how she is.
No, how is she?
Well I like her in the old movies. Let’s put it that way. Her mother and my mother are great friends. But her mother is in an old ladies’ home in Palm Springs while my mother lives like a queen in her own house in Europe with three nurses always around. Liz’s poor mother never had anything in her life, honey. At Liz’s [recent] wedding her mother wasn’t even allowed to sit at her table. She had to sit with the hairdresser of MGM. I know much about Liz because I’ve known her all my life and because she was married to Nicky Hilton while I was married to Conrad Hilton. And even though they were Catholic, Nicky begged his father to allow him to divorce Elizabeth. Conrad was very furious, but Nicky said he would kill himself if he had to stay married to her one more hour.
Well Zsa Zsa, nobody will ever accuse you of holding back.
(Laughing) I like to tell it like it is. They can only kill you once you know, so I’m not afraid of anyone.
RIP Zsa Zsa.