Jack Nicholson’s long list of Hollywood’s leading ladies that have left him scared of dying alone

As the Hollywood star and his well-connected girlfriend strolled through the chic French resort they looked every inch the devoted couple. But when a pretty young local girl pulled up on a motorbike and invited him to join her, Jack Nicholson hopped on and vanished into the night without a backward glance at his stricken girlfriend.

For Anjelica Huston, who went on to star in The Addams Family and won an Oscar for Prizzi’s Honor, the crushing humiliation at the Cannes Film Festival in 1974 was just one in a long string of infidelities by “Jack the Jumper”.

In her autobiography she said: “Pretty French girls would come up on motorbikes and say, ‘Oh, Jack, you want to ride on my bike with me?’ He’d get on and leave me standing on the pavement. I would just retire to our hotel room in tears.”

But 40 years later, after cutting a romantic swathe through the world’s most beautiful women – 2,000 of them at his own estimation – reality has finally set in for the ageing Lothario. At the age of 77, Jack Nicholson, star of Chinatown, The Shining, As Good As It Gets and A Few Good Men, admits he is lonely and is facing ԁеаtһ alone because, surprise surprise, women don’t trust him.

Sandra Knight and Jack Nicholson in 'The Terror' film - 1963

With blunt honesty, he told a US magazine: “I would love that one last romance but I’m not very realistic about it happening. What I can’t deny is my yearning.

“I’m definitely still wild at heart, but I’ve struck biogravity. I can’t hit on women in public any more. I didn’t decide this – it just doesn’t feel right at my age.

“I have had everything a man could ask for but no one could say I’m successful with affairs of the heart.

“I don’t think relationships are fixed things. People are necessarily complex and confused beings. We don’t always do the right thing, say the right thing and behave the way we always want to behave. No woman has ever recognised what I say as being legitimate. They don’t trust me. They think of my reputation – Jack the Jumper. I’m damned by what women think.”

Instead of all-night parties with a beauty on each arm, Jack’s days are far more sedate. He sleeps till 1pm when he has a glass of milk to soothe his stomach. Afternoons are spent playing golf or visiting his art collection in a mansion next door to his own in Mulholland Drive, Los Angeles.

In the same interview he spoke of his regrets about his treatment of Anjelica, the most significant of his lovers. He says their split was the “toughest period of my life”.

Candice Bergen and Jack Nicholson in 'Carnal Knowledge' film 1971

For his ex, that belated admission may have a hollow ring. They met in 1973 and began a stormy 17-year affair marked by his frequent, and all too open, dalliances.

Though Anjelica comes from a dynasty of movie-makers she was just 21 and had not yet begun her glittering film career when she moved to LA from London. Jack had been married, to actress Sandra Knight, and together they had a daughter Jennifer. But the couple split in 1968, a year before he became a star in Easy Rider.

Sandra, who met the young actor when they starred in TV western Tales of Wells Fargo, said: “We had a very beautiful, sweet marriage. I could see Jack was going to become a big star and have lots of temptations. I couldn’t go along for the ride.”

The ride became a roller-coaster of the world’s ѕехıеѕt women. Jack cried off his second date with Anjelica, who heard later that he had gone off to meet his ex Michelle Phillips, the doe-eyed blonde in the Mamas and Papas.

Michelle Phillips and Jack Nicholson

Early in their relationship she had got up to leave a restaurant after Jack openly flirted with their waitress. He pulled her back down into her seat and ordered her never to do it again. The young Anjelica, dating Hollywood’s hottest young actor, meekly complied. She said later: “People say to me, ‘Why did you hang on?’ Oh, why not, you know. I was in love, and I think maybe in a few cases I took those in- fidelities more seriously than he did.”

Candice Bergen is rumoured to have fallen for his charms as they filmed Carnal Knowledge, and Bond girl Jill St John, model Marie Helvin, shipping heiress Christina Onassis, and drinks heiress Sabrina Guinness are among his other reputed conquests.

Marie Helvin and Jack Nicholson

Anjelica tells how singer Joni Mitchell snuggled between his legs at a concert in New York’s Central Park in 1973. He rolled his eyes and said she was an old friend when Anjelica complained.

When she found her friend ­Apollonia van Ravenstein had slept with him while she was on a modelling assignment he replied that it was just a “mercy f***”.

He famously had an affair with Margaret Trudeau, the former first lady of Canada, romping in the back of his chauffeur-driven Daimler. Years later they bumped into one another at a Hollywood party and he took her into the gents for a quickie.

“The thing I adore about women is their unpredictability,” he once said. “One moment they may be sipping champagne from a glass… and then they’re pitching it in my direction. Fortunately for me, I have had enough practice to duck and dive at the appropriate second.”

Jack Nicholson and Winnie Hollman

Anjelica was desperate for marriage and children, which Jack cruelly dismissed. But as well as his daughter Jennifer, now 52, he had a son Caleb, 44, with Susan Anspach, his co-star in the film Five Easy Pieces. And in 1980 he had a two-year affair with Danish supermodel Winnie Hollman which resulted in a daughter, Honey, 23.

The final straw for Anjelica came when budding actress Rebecca Broussard, 12 years his junior, got pregnant. She was a waitress in a Los Angeles club and Jack became besotted with her. Anjelica went mad when he casually announced over dinner: “Someone is gonna have a baby.”

He said he wanted nothing to change but she thought differently and told him: “There’s only room for one of us women in this picture, and I am going to retire from it.”

Jack and Rebecca had a daughter Lorraine, 25, and son Raymond, 23, but he wouldn’t let them move in with him. Instead, he bought them a mansion down the road, insisting he needed to be “by myself so I can think devilish thoughts”.

Further light on his attitude to women came in his reputed response when asked why men in his position would ever use prostitutes.

“You don’t pay them to f*** them – you pay them to leave,” was the quote.

Jack Nicholson and girlfriend Rebecca Broussard 1998

While still with Rebecca, he said: “It’s not women who are a problem – it’s me. I guess I like my own company too much. I need my own space. I’m just no good at living with women.

“Maybe it does take the excitement out of a relationship. Maybe I need that edge. If Rebecca wants to have fun she goes out on her own. She’s a good spirit, got a big heart, a very soulful, loving person.”

With his new family down the road he continued his womanising, allegedly adding sultry French actress Julie Delpy to his tally.

Rebecca had her revenge by sleeping with her co-star in the never-released film Blue Champagne, dumping Jack in the process.

At the age of 62 he began dating Twin Peaks star Lara Flynn Boyle, 33 years his junior. But after five years together she discovered a bracelet meant for another woman at the bottom of his luggage. When they split in 2003 she weighed just six and a half stone, blamed on the stress of their relationship.

Jack said of his ѕех drive as he gets older: “I have the same libido. But whether you want it to or not, that part of your life changes a bit. Throughout most of my life I liked doing what I like to do… I remember being at least mentally ѕехսаււy excited about things from childhood, even sooner than eight, in the bathtub. I mean, I had a large appetite.”

As age has crept up on him the rejections have mounted. In 2006 he issued a public apology to Nicole Kidman for making a pass at her at the Oscars using a chat-up line which is said to have brought a gasp of shock from the Moulin Rouge star, whose fiance Keith Urban was standing by her side.

And now, as Jack heads into a lonely old age he has finally come to realise that he has only the memories of those 2,000 conquests to keep him company at night

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