Arnold Schwarzenegger: New documentary series offers personal insights into his life

Arnold Schwarzenegger
New documentary series offers personal insights into his life

Arnold Schwarzenegger talks about his life in a three-part documentary series on Netflix.


Arnold Schwarzenegger provides deep insights into his turbulent life in the documentary series “Arnold” – and is surprisingly approachable.

He was an athlete, he was a Hollywood star, he was governor: In the new Netflix documentary “Arnold”, Arnold Schwarzenegger (75) speaks more personally than ever before about the most important stages of his career. He talks about his childhood in Austria and how he made his big American dream come true on his own. In addition, the actor does not shy away from addressing personal scandals and mistakes. Schwarzenegger talks about these findings in the three-part documentary series “Arnold” (from June 7, 2023 on Netflix).

“That was the beginning of Maria and me”

In addition to Arnold Schwarzenegger, various companions have their say in the documentation, but not his ex-wife Maria Shriver (67). The “Terminator” star tells a funny anecdote about the first encounter with his wife of many years, with whom he has four children. He met Kennedy’s niece Maria Shriver in 1977 at a party at the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Tennis Tournament.

Maria’s mother Eunice Kennedy Shriver (1921 – 2009) approached him, greeted him and introduced him to her daughter. “Later she said, ‘My daughter is very fond of you,’ and I said, ‘Well, your daughter has a really nice butt. I have to tell you that,'” Schwarzenegger says in the documentary. “How stupid to say that. I don’t even know why I said that.”

Then he adds: “I really fell in love with Maria – not because she was a Kennedy, but because she had an extraordinary personality. I could see this little rebel in her. I wanted to break out of Austria, she wanted to break out too. That was the beginning of Maria and me.”

Maria Shriver was opposed to his political career

His candidacy for governor of California earned him the nickname “Governator” and in November 2003 the actor was sworn in as the 38th governor of California. He told his wife Maria Shriver about his career plans in an unusual place – and she didn’t agree at all. “I sat in a hot tub with her and I was like, ‘What do you think if I run for governor?’ She freaked out. I almost felt like she was hyperventilating,” Schwarzenegger recalled. However, political office proved to be “very difficult for my relationship with Maria and the children”.

“It was wrong what I did”

The documentary also touches on the affair with his former housekeeper, which resulted in his son Joseph Baena (25). In the Netflix production, Schwarzenegger recalls the moment that forever changed his relationship with his wife, Maria Shriver, after his term as governor ended.

“Maria and I went to marriage counseling once a week. In one session, the marriage counselor said, ‘I think today Maria wants to be very specific about something. She wants to know if you are Joseph’s father.’ I thought my heart would stop – and then I told the truth.” Maria Shriver was “devastated” because of it. In May 2011, the longtime couple finally announced their separation.

According to Schwarzenegger, he will have to live with this mistake for the rest of his life. But he also makes it clear: “Everyone suffered because of it. Maria had to suffer. The children had to suffer. Joseph, his mother – just everyone.” He later adds in the documentary: “What I did was wrong. But I don’t want to make Joseph feel like he’s not welcome in this world. Because he is. I love him and he’s become one developed into an extraordinary young man.”

In addition to Arnold Schwarzenegger, numerous well-known companions of the star such as Sylvester Stallone (76) have their say in front of the camera in the three-part documentary series “Arnold” on Netflix.


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