Paul Newman

Paul Newman started out at the right time, in the right place, as an actor with loads of potential and a knock ‘em dead pair of baby blues.  He went on to become a notable film director and producer, a political activist, a great humanitarian, a spokesperson for his generation of method actors, not to mention an actor who seasoned into fine supporting roles in his elder years, and the originator of a dynamite salad dressing.  And he owes it primarily to Saturn.

A look at his natal chart sees Saturn as the highest elevated planet, conjoined with the MC in Scorpio.  It is also the all-important ruler of the chart, given his Capricorn Ascendant, as well as the ruler of Jupiter, Venus and Mercury in Capricorn and his Sun and South Node in Aquarius by traditional rulership.

Those planets in Capricorn are in sextile to Saturn, and of course, it always helps to have Saturn in a grand trine, as he does with Pluto and Uranus.  However, some might question the benefit of Saturn’s accidental dignity of Saturn in 10th house, and certainly, the square to the Sun is harsh.  All in all, though, this is an excellent example of being given a great challenge as well as the tools to handle the challenge.

In addition to the aforementioned achievements, Saturn’s position in Scorpio explains his status as a sex symbol (although it doesn’t hurt to have Mars in Aries in trine to Neptune too) as well as his un-Hollywood-like fidelity in marriage with his well-known quote, “Why have hamburger out, when you can have steak at home?”  The Saturn might have something to do with his daredevil acts as a racecar driver too (along with that Mars in the 3rd house).

There was a great tragedy in his life, however, when his son, Scott, died of a drug overdose in November 1978; and surely, this is a sad manifestation of Saturn in Scorpio (death) at the MC (fatherhood) and square to the Sun (children).  This loss, by the way, gave rise to his humanitarian acts like the phoenix that rises from the ashes.

In the timing factors of the death of father and son, there is an unfortunate, but accurate, resonance in three planetary cycles.

  • First, Newman died on the Saturn Return of his son’s death, suggesting a full circle drawn in all of Saturn’s imagery, and these transits were in the natal 8th house.

  • Second, Newman’s Sun had progressed into Aries by minutes at Scott’s death, and was just minutes away from leaving Aries at his own death, signaling the beginning and end of an era.

  • Third, each death took place when the progressed Moon was in the balsamic phase in relation to the progressed Sun, another signal to the end of an era.

Also noteworthy in the timing of Newman’s death is the station of Jupiter on his Ascendant, representing, in combination with all other factors, the liberation from the physical incarnation.

Additionally, Newman was undergoing his Uranus Return.  A conjunction is always the signal for a major ending and a major beginning, albeit not always physical death, of course.  This conjunction is especially significant for Newman because his Sun’s life force, namely, Aquarius, is ruled by Uranus.

Finally, Newman was born just two days after a solar eclipse, and his next birthday is a repetition of that eclipse, yet another indication of completion.  Furthermore, this was the same eclipse that preceded the start of Newman’s Own!

In the past year, a/k/a Pluto’s transition from Sagittarius to Capricorn, has seen the fall of many great men, and His ingress to a new sign might see a few more falls.  To name just a few, we saw Elliott Spitzer fall through scandal; we saw scores of great men on Wall Street fall due to failure; and we saw Newman fall in the form of physical death.

Paul Newman will be dearly missed, but his natal Saturn also suggests an enduring legacy.  He is truly a testament to the fact that Saturn has us fulfill our human potential.