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Dennis Quaid Says Natasha Richardson’s Death ‘Devastated’ Him: ‘She Was Such a Beautiful Person’ (Exclusive)

Dennis Quaid and Natasha Richardson
Dennis Quaid and Natasha RichardsonGetty Images

Natasha Richardson was a bright light on the set of The Parent Trap back in 1998 — just ask Dennis Quaid.

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“Now you hit my heart. She was such a beautiful person, such a beautiful, beautiful person. Just none of that, that actor stuff, prima donna stuff,” the actor, 64, exclusively tells Us Weekly. “Someone easy to work with and such a great sense of humor.”

Richardson and Quaid played Elizabeth James and Nick Parker, respectively, in the the beloved remake. Eleven years after the film’s release, Richardson hit her head during a ski lesson in Montreal, Canada. After complaining of a headache, she was rushed to the hospital and pronounced dead at age 45. She was survived by actor husband Liam Neeson and their sons Daniel and Micheál.

Dennis Quaid and Natasha Richardson
Dennis Quaid & Natasha Richardson (Photo by SGranitz/WireImage) Getty Images

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“When that accident happened, it just devastated me and so many other people,” Quaid says. “She had such a beautiful love, married life with Liam, and two beautiful boys. She always had a smile on her face when she came to work. That really affected everyone around her.”

Quaid and Richardson starred in the film opposite Lindsay Lohan. Like the 1961 original, Elizabeth and Nick’s daughter’s Annie and Hallie (both played by Lohan) discover they are twins at summer camp and switch places to try to get their parents back together. The Nancy Meyers-directed comedy recently celebrated its 20th anniversary.

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“Things start to go by so quick. That movie just keeps going on and on and on,” Quaid tells Us, noting that it doesn’t feel that long ago. “You know, the first one was made with Hayley Mills. I think I was about 10 years old when I saw it. Brian Keith played the dad in that. Hayley Mills, oh my gosh, I had such a crush on her. But, The Parent Trap was made during the time of VHS. When it came out on VHS I think every parent in America used it as a babysitter while they were at home. So many kids saw that like 40 or 50 times.”

He jokingly adds: “I usually say, ‘Yeah, I used to be a babysitter while your parents were doing what they wanted to do.’”

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