CLINT EASTWOOD: A LEGEND IN HIS OWN TIME
Or, Is It True What They Say about Saturn?
From wayward musician to TV cowboy to box office movie magnet; scandalous divorce after a 25-year marriage, an even more scandalous rejection of his long-time mistress, a notorious ladies’ man; from film director to film auteur, and along the way, writing the scores to many of his films; became mayor of his city because it rejected building rights on his own property; Academy Award winning filmmaker (not once, but twice), and a body of work that can only be described as relentless; from a lucky break in the late 50’s when a producer said he looked like a cowboy, to one of the most powerful men in Hollywood, with nary a setback in his career – that’s Clint Eastwood.
The astrology of Eastwood’s durable success is evident in his natal horoscope – Neptune, emphasized at the critical degree in Virgo and on the Leo MC (sign of the actor as well as royalty), the wits and wiles of a Gemini Sun mixed with the power and drive of a Scorpio Ascendant, in turn, with its traditional ruler, Mars, dignified in Aries, and its contemporary ruler, Pluto, in its own natural 8th house, plus the imagination as well as the savvy that comes with a high count in the water element.
The not-so-secret of his success, however, especially the recognition as a serious filmmaker in the second half of his life, is his prominent Saturn in its own sign and as the handle of bucket chart formation, in the unlikely place of the 2nd house.
“Unlikely,” because, with only a glance, Saturn in the 2nd house ordinarily can make for a conflict of money versus talent, or a great insecurity about natural abilities and finances (albeit he is well-known in Hollywood for being a tight wad producer); but instead, a deeper understanding of Saturn in the whole dynamic of the horoscope reveals the manifestation of his god-given gifts of the 2nd house as well as his durability.
All of the above, plus Saturn’s opposition to natal Venus also explains his personal life, but we’ll leave that for the gossip columns.
To demonstrate the “unfoldment” of his natal potential for achievement, here are the timing techniques for four pivotal events in his career. (Note: Hollywood, being what it is, i.e., the time it takes from “green-lighting” a project to pre-production, through production, and finally, box office receipts and award time, we might wiggle the orbs a little more than ordinarily we would for the average Joe, or “Joe, the production assistant,” as the case would be).
January 9, 1959, The First TV Airing of “Rawhide:”
n Eastwood’s progressed Sun, ruler of the natal MC and the indicator of acting, entered into the orb of a very favorable conjunction to natal Venus as well as the connection to the A/M (8 degrees of the Cardinal signs).
n The progressed Ascendant entered the opposition to the natal Sun, confirming his identity as an actor as well as bringing him some profile.
n Progressed Mars had just crossed the natal Descendant, indicating a rise toward his professional goals and more visibility.
n While in pre-production for the show, the progressed Moon conjoined the MC, priming him for some public spotlight.
Additionally, these other phenomena significantly indicate the set-up for this lucky break on “Rawhide,” albeit they occurred a little sooner than the actual job. In 1957, the Sun and Moon conjoined by progression, setting the stage for a major life event, especially in the career sector for a Leo MC. At the same time, Jupiter progressed into the exalted position, Cancer, activating opportunity and beneficence. Ironically, Jupiter is the symbol for cowboys and the wild, wild West!
This combination of secondary progressions makes for his “readiness” to move forward with his career, but the transits of the time make for the circumstances of the actual work.
n Saturn was moving from the end of Sagittarius into Capricorn, forming a grand trine between natal MC and Neptune with natal Mars, all in the work houses, 2, 6 and 10. This also would be the early sign of his Saturn Return, obviously clearing the way for the manifestation of his potential for professional success.
n Jupiter had just crossed the natal Ascendant and formed a Yod with natal Jupiter and Mars, resonating the archetype of the heroic cowboy, but this time perhaps, with an added kick of the Fates that often comes with this configuration.
n Transiting Pluto left the conjunction to natal Neptune, allowing the rebirth of his image to unfold and giving him the strength (or the magic) to handle the public’s projection of the ideal onto him.
The eclipses of the time were also important. During the filming of the show, the lunar eclipse took place in Eastwood’s natal North Node in the 6th house, making for more than just the chance at a job, but additionally, valuable connections for the advancement of his work.
The solar eclipse prior to the airing sat in square to his natal Pluto, ruler of the chart, planting the seed for the recognition that would lie ahead.
Interestingly, just days before the first show, transiting Saturn moved into Capricorn at the World Axis, indicating some shift in the collective’s appetites. Perhaps this is indicative of Eastwood’s readiness to be launched, but also the world’s readiness to receive a star in the making!
November 12, 1971, The Premiere of “Play Misty for Me:”
This film was Eastwood’s directorial debut, and it also revealed to the public his relationship with music. It opened to admirable reviews, profited modestly at the box office, but developed a strong cult following and confirmed more of his abilities.
n The progressed Sun, ruler of the natal MC, conjoined natal Pluto, ruler of the ASC, making for the application of his power and effectiveness toward his career, reputation and experience of authority as director.
n The progressed MC came to A/M and squared natal Venus, allowing him to make more of his talents.
n The progressed Ascendant joined the cusp of the 2nd house in the Placidus system, often a time when a person wants to be more appreciated for his natural abilities.
n Progressed Venus came to the natal MC, obviously making for new achievements and advancing his professional identity.
n Interestingly, progressed Mars came into a square with the natal MC, perhaps indicating a struggle for that achievement and new identity.
It should also be noted the film was actually made during the phase of the progressed Full Moon, which fell on the conjunction to Pluto, emphasizing his readiness to take charge of a production as well as indicating a major turning point in his career.
At the time of this premiere, the progressed Moon slipped into Leo, ready to enjoy the fruits of his labors.
The transits of the time were simple, but strong:
n Uranus made that infamous transit, opposite its natal position, popularly known as “the mid-life crisis,” when a person has to break through to new means of expression in order to fulfill one’s potential. In this case, however, an opposition to Uranus also means the formation of a Grand Square with natal Saturn and Pluto. Talk about the application of power! (More will be mentioned about this natal configuration later).
n Transiting Pluto crossed over the Placidus 11th house cusp, indicating the release of his career and a new connection with his “people,” be that his fans or directing colleagues.
The Solar Eclipse that preceded the premiere took place at 27 Leo, “crowning” his MC. Who needs further interpretation!
April 8, 1986, Voted Mayor of Carmel, CA:
How’s this for an example of Scorpio Rising? When repeatedly rejected by Carmel’s Town Board for the rights to build on his own property, Eastwood decided to run for mayor and change the Town Board. He won by a landslide and his property got developed.
n If his birth time is accurate, the progressed Ascendant entered Capricorn on the day of the election, obviously making for new stature and authority!
n That progressed Ascendant at 0 Capricorn formed a sesquiquad with natal Chiron and another one with progressed Mercury, all on the World Axis, so perhaps his candidacy was not just about spite and power, but also the attempt to heal his “wound” for all the world to see.
n Progressed Mars just entered the orb of a conjunction to his Gemini Sun, putting his power into effect in local politics and community.
n The progressed Sun, ruler of the MC, just left the orb on the natal Moon, having some imagery, not just of leadership over the people, but a little royalty too.
This significance of political win also makes more noteworthy the cycle of the progressed Sun and Moon. His acting career started on the phase of the progressed New Moon, his directing began in the phase of the progressed Full Moon, and this victory took place on the phase of the progressed New Moon.
March 29, 1993, Academy Awards for Best Movie and Best Director of “Unforgiven:”
Coming full circle, back to the genre where he started, the Western, Eastwood stunned his colleagues and fans alike with this deep and sensitive film, catapulting him to the stature of auteur. He was also nominated as Best Actor.
n An exact sextile took place from progressed Sun to natal Sun, ruler of the natal MC.
n Progressed Mercury, co-ruler of the 10th house, came to the natal MC, making for the fulfillment of professional potential, again with imagery of royalty.
n Progressed Jupiter was just minutes away from natal Venus, and it never hurts to have a bit of luck when nominated for an Oscar!
The surprising transit of the time was Saturn on the IC, a major rite of life passage, but more often known as a low point. In Eastwood’s case, however, he was just coming “back to his roots” and laying the foundation for a series of fine films yet to come in ensuing years. At the time, “Unforgiven” appeared like the culmination of a career, but rather, it was the beginning of a new era in his career.
n Transiting Pluto opposed natal Mercury, co-ruler of the MC and ruler of the 8th house, brought the depth of his talents to public light.
n Interestingly, a few weeks prior to his win, Mars stationed at 8 Cancer, activating his natal Venus and A/M, and moved onto his natal Pluto on the night of the Oscars, signifying how transiting inner planets can be important “triggers” to events.
n And as though he needed a little more luck, transiting Jupiter was on the A/M and forming a square to natal Venus.
Readers will notice Eastwood’s chart contains the notorious T-square between Saturn, Pluto and Uranus of the Great Depression, which is re-configuring (in a new arrangement) in 2010. He is in good company with the likes of Elizabeth Taylor, Neil Armstrong, Mike Nichols, Barbara Walters, Tom Wolfe, Stephen Sondheim, Sandra Day O’Connor and Edward Kennedy, to name a few. These lives are examples that will be resonating with that transiting T-square next year, so we will see their names in the news a little more often and their headlines will teach us a bit more about that configuration.
If these individuals are examples of the T-square, then what we can say about it, so far, is they worked within conventional forms (Saturn), but broke through the limits of those forms (Uranus), thereby reinventing the forms (Pluto)....as well as themselves.
By the way, the orbs on Eastwood’s own T-square might be a little loose for some astrologers, but since the midpoint of Saturn and Pluto exactly equals Uranus, in actuality, he might experience it even more intensely.
Currently, Eastwood is in the last quarter phase of the progressed Sun-Moon cycle, the period of cornucopia in the bigger picture of a life, and therefore, can be very fruitful. With 30 months or so before it turns balsamic (not as productive a phase), and about the same time before Saturn retreats into the 12th house, plus the resonance of the aforementioned T-square, there’s plenty of time, even by Hollywood standards, to add another award-winning film to his collection. And wouldn’t his Scorpio Rising enjoy that as revenge on the last year’s Oscars for ignoring his very fine film, “Gran Torino!”
So, in conclusion, not one to be too Pollyanna about the rigors of Saturn, but to all those late-bloomers out there (and who of us isn’t one?), the next time anyone tells you about Saturn as the cosmic bad guy, just tell them about Clint Eastwood and let it make your day!
Clint Eastwood, May 31, 1930, 5:35 P.M. P.S.T., San Francisco, CA
John Marchesella is a practicing astrologer in New York City, a movie-going lover, and a long time friend of Saturn.