Deana Jurgens

Deana was born in London on October 7, 1957, the daughter of film actress Eva Bartok and an unknown father. Her birth received great publicity at the time for several reasons. For starters, it was unheard of that a major movie star would admit to a pregnancy out of wedlock. Miss Bartok was divorced from her fourth husband, actor Curd Jürgens, and denied that he had any involvement in this pregnancy. Things got more complicated when Bartok was diagnosed in Los Angeles with a tumor that had to be urgently removed and meant that her pregnancy would be terminated in the surgery. Instead of submitting to doctors in L.A., the star flew to London for second opinions but was told basically the same thing.

An avid student of Subud, an Indonesian philosophy, Miss Bartok decided to postpone the surgery and submitted herself to Subud’s spiritual exercises. When everybody thought she was dying, Eva gave birth to a healthy baby girl whom she named Deana Grazia and shortly afterwards she, herself, was back working in a German film. The tumor had miraculously disappeared and she was in perfect health. These remarkable happenings changed Miss Bartok forever as well as her commitment to acting. She moved with her mother and baby to the Subud compound in Cilandak, Indonesia where Deana was raised and educated.

In 1970, Bartok left her family behind and settled in Los Angeles where she wrote articles and lectured in universities about Subud. There’s evidence that later on Deana and her grandmother joined Bartok in California but details are not clear. Deana returned to the public eye when she launched a short-lived career as a film actress in the early 1980s. Several years later, she became the center of media attention again when her mother revealed that Deana was fathered by Frank Sinatra. It is truly mystifying why Miss Bartok kept this a secret for so long nor what she expected to achieve with this revelation. By all accounts, she was a deeply spiritual individual who never cared much about financial gain so it is very unlikely that she would come up with such a story in order to con money out of “old blue eyes”. On the other hand, there was never any formal rebuttal to Bartok claim from Sinatra or his family, which leaves the subject of Deana’s paternity an open question.

Among so many mysteries, it is also strange that Deanna decided to use “Jurgens” as her last name in films. She presently resides in Sydney, Australia, “an attractive divorcée with two children” according to confirmed reports. Eva Bartok died in London in 1998.

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