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Jill St. John Is Forced to Use a Wheelchair in Her Final Days

Without a doubt, one of the most beautiful and talented actresses of yesteryear was Jill St. John. Jill St. John was one of Hollywood’s most foremost actresses and is also remembered as one of the most memorable Bond girls.

She had quite a struggle to reach the top of the industry and her life has been one wild ride. But she’s also had many difficulties throughout her life as well as in her career. Her biopic is one of the most interested and most overlooked of any Hollywood actress.

So, what is Jill St. John up to today? Her acting career and legacy is certainly one to be discussed and remembered.

Join FactsVerse to learn about Jill St. John’s life and career and why she’s sadly forced to use a wheelchair today…


Jill Arlyn Oppenheim was born on the 19th of August, 1940, in Los Angeles, California. Her father was a noted restaurateur, and her mother was a housewife who later became Jill’s stage mother.

As a young girl, she took ballet classes, and it was during this time that her mother changed her surname to ‘St. John’ which had an easier ring to Oppenheim. She became a skilled dancer and would eventually perform on stage.

But her ultimate goal was to become an actress. She came of age during Hollywood’s Golden Age they will and dreamt of becoming a star herself.

And she certainly didn’t wait long to get started. At the age of nine, she appeared in a TV movie called A Christmas Carol. Prior to this, her acting experience was mostly limited to radio performances.

She later appeared in the children’s television show, Sandy Dreams. This brought her more attention and led to more roles. She later appeared in episodes of shows such as The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show, Sky King, Fireside Theatre, Cavalcade of America, and many more. She also made her film debut in 1951 in the film Thunder in the East.

Her first major role, however, came in 1958 when she was 18 in the film Summer Love. This was a musical comedy film in which she co-starred with John Saxon and Molly Bee. The film was a huge hit and while it didn’t exactly catapult Jill to stardom, it certainly brought her more attention and opened the door for more opportunities.

She continued to work regularly in television but also managed to snag a few supporting and lead roles in feature films. These films included The Remarkable Mr. Pennypacker, Holiday for Lovers, and The Lost World.

Her big break came when she was cast in the film Come Blow Your Horn released in 1963. She was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for this film and she began receiving tons of offers left and right after the film’s release.

Before we tell you more about Jill St. John’s life and career and why she’s forced to use a wheelchair now, please like this video and subscribe to FactsVerse for more interesting stories about pop culture and your favorite celebrities and more fascinating biopics! Now, let’s get back to the video…



Jill St. John loved working in comedy and this was the focus of much of her career. She appeared in a slew of successful comedy hits in the 1960s including Who’s Sleeping in My Bed?, Who’s Minding the Store?, and Honeymoon Hotel.

She initially stated early in her career that she loved working on comic roles. However, audiences also took notice of her beauty – and she later proclaimed that she liked playing a sexy comedienne!

Two of her biggest hits in the 1960s was The Oscar and The Liquidator. She was also one of the first major actresses to appear in the 1960s action show Batman.

She also appeared in the film Banning which co-starred Robert Wagner who would later become her husband. However, her biggest role was in 1971 when she appeared in the James Bond film Diamonds Are Forever.

In this film, she appeared as a Bond Girl – in fact, she was the very first American Bond girl and was a lot more abrasive and rough compared to the previous Bond girls. She played Tiffany Case, who was a diamond smuggler and this remains one of her most popular roles. It’s also one of the most popular Bond girl roles of all time.

The following year, she appeared in another dramatic crime film called Sitting Target. This was a British crime film that starred Oliver Reed and its hailed as one of her best films.

She played Pat Lomart, the wife of Oliver Reed’s character who is in danger of getting murdered by him after he finds out she’s having an affair! While she spoke of being a comic actress earlier on in her career, this fantastic film showed that she had great dramatic skills as well.

Throughout the 1970s she also worked extensively in TV – working in shows such as Vega$, The Love Boat, Fantasy Island, Matt Houston, and Magnum PI. She also appeared in the films Rooster, The Concrete Jungle, Around The World In 80 Days, and The Trip. This latter film was made in 2002 and it wasn’t until 2014 that she appeared in a film again when she appeared in an episode of the show Northpole.

This was also her final credit and since then, she’s retired from acting.



Jill St. John has sadly had a tough life in the past decade. Due to her old age, she’s often forced to use a wheelchair to go around. Life has also been tough for her husband Robert Wagner, now in her nineties and suffering from dementia.

What’s even more stressful, is that the controversy surrounding Robert Wagner still haunts him and Jill to this day.

Here’s how the crazy story began. As we mentioned earlier, when she was a child, Jill St. John took ballet lessons. One of her fellow classmates was Natalie Wood – who also became a successful actress in her own right.

Robert Wagner, was married twice to Natalie Wood – who was his first wife. They were first married from 1957 to 1962 until they got divorced. They later re-married again in 1972. Both of them had also worked together in a few films.

In 1981, Robert Wagner was on a yacht with Natalie Wood and actor Christopher Walken. Christopher Walken and Natalie Wood were working on a film together called Brainstorm.

At night, when everyone was asleep, Natalie Wood had left her cabin. What happened in between there is still a mystery – over 40 years later. She was found dead on an inflatable boat near the yacht. She also had a lot of bruises on her body.

It’s speculated that either she committed suicide or she was murdered and Robert Wagner has long been a suspect. Nothing has been confirmed and the case still gets discussed on occasion to this day. No doubt this stress has lingered on Robert Wagner and has affected his family – including Jill St. John, who became his third wife.

Jill St. John hasn’t discussed the incident too much and one can only speculate how she feels about the incident.


She has had a steady career since her childhood and though it took her time to get her big break, she managed to persist. She’s mostly remembered as being one of the most memorable Bond girls but she’s also carved out a great career in comedy films – appearing in films that are now considered comedy classics.

She’s been married to Robert Wagner since 1990 and has 3 stepdaughters. She’s also had feuds with actress Lana Wood, Natalie Wood’s sister, as she was once involved in a relationship with Sean Connery who was romancing both women. Since Natalie Wood’s death, there have been times when Jill St. John has been confronted by Lana Wood who, naturally, wanted to know more details about the fateful incident.

Jill St. John sometimes has her personal life and these troubles overshadowing her career. But we should take time to look back at her excellent and versatile acting career. She’s carved out a great career in both film and television and has worked in comedy, action, crime, and drama films. Often underrated, she deserves a second look.

So, now let’s hear from you:

Are you a fan of Jill St. John? Did you know about her health condition and why she’s sadly forced to use a wheelchair now?

In fact, here’s what we want to know from you:

Do you think that we’ll see more attention given to Bond girls and their careers?

Or will there always be a greater focus on the actors who play Bond himself?

Let’s hear your thoughts in the comments.

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