Ryan O’Neal and Ali MacGraw first fell in love — or at least the movie version of it — 45 years ago. The defiant, tragic romance the actors lived out in 1970’s Love Story earned them Oscar nominations, made them A-list movie stars and forever linked them to a line the American Film Institute ranked No. 13 on its list of the 100 top movie quotes: “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” On Tuesday, the actors launched a languidly paced national tour in A.R. Gurney’s Love Letters.
Their journey begins with eight performances at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts in Fort Lauderdale, and more dates are being added to the 12 weeks already booked.
“The minute they asked me and said Ryan would do it, I said, ‘Yes, thank you. Yes, please,’” MacGraw, 76, said during a conference call from her home in Santa Fe, New Mexico. O’Neal, 74, hops into the call a few minutes later from his home in Malibu, California, greeting MacGraw with a “Hi, baby.” He said of their enduring chemistry, “If we had had a falling out, we couldn’t do it. But we’ve never had a hostile word.”