From hero to predator: how the fall of Arnold Schwarzenegger was predicted by one man

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

The former governor may soon find more claims about alleged infidelities resurfacing

The anchormen called it a bolt from the blue, Tuesday's news that Arnold Schwarzenegger had fathered a child during an affair with his housekeeper. Some dubbed him The Sperminator; others The Marriage Terminator; everyone professed astonishment that California's perma-tanned Last Action Hero could turn out to be such a copper-topped villain.

Or nearly everyone. For while a gob-smacked mainstream media was coming to terms with the implosion of one of Hollywood's foremost power couples, a scandal-mongering celebrity biographer called Ian Halperin was celebrating a remarkable journalistic coup.

Seven months ago, while publicising an unauthorised biography of Schwarzenegger, Halperin predicted that California's then governor would separate from his wife Maria Shriver within the next 12 months. "Believe me," he told a radio host, "over the years, Arnold has done things that make Tiger Woods look like the Virgin Mary."

Halperin's book The Governator portrayed its subject as a serial sexual predator and alleged that during his 24-year marriage, Schwarzenegger had embarked on extra-marital liaisons with, among others, Total Recall co-star Rachel Ticotin and former child actress Gigi Goyette.

Yet although Halperin interviewed 700 people while researching the book, and boasts a track record for unearthing celebrity scandal that has earned him the nickname "Hollywood's Nostradamus", its publication met with silence from major news organisations.

"I'm a New York Times bestselling author," he told The Independent yesterday. "Normally, when my books come out, I get invited on all the major TV networks. This time, no one wanted me, except a couple of small radio stations. It was incredible: I'd turned up amazing stuff, but Schwarzenegger seemed to have shut me down. There was total news blackout."

Halperin adds that in his original manuscript, he detailed Arnie's affair with Mildred "Patty" Baena, the housekeeper said to have given birth to his illegitimate son roughly 10 years ago. But the entire passage revealing their relationship was expunged by his publisher, Rupert Murdoch's HarperCollins.

"It seems funny now," he said. "I actually identified Baena in the original manuscript, and went into detail about their affair and her child. But the lawyers struck it out. They were worried about a libel suit."

Yesterday, as rumours emerged that Schwarzenegger was the father of at least one other illegitimate child, Halperin predicted that we "have not even seen the tip of the iceberg". Further juicy revelations are likely to emerge when Shriver's lawyer files her divorce papers, he said.

"I know of numerous other women who say they had children with Schwarzenegger. I didn't write about their claims, because I was unable to corroborate them. I still don't know if they're true. But these women will start to appear from the woodwork."

To Halperin, the US media's failure to hold Schwarzenegger, 63, to account fits into a troubling pattern. While Fleet Street frets over the apparent ruthlessness of muck-raking tabloid hacks, their American counterparts suffer from the opposite problem.

Recent years have seen John Edwards come within weeks of mounting a serious challenge for the White House, despite the fact that he had been cheating on his cancer-ridden wife. Although his illegitimate daughter was photographed by the National Enquirer, major newspapers for months chose to ignore the story.

Last year brought the revelation that the serial infidelity of Tiger Woods had been suppressed by executives at publishers American Media, who agreed in 2007 to spike a tabloid report about his love life in return for an "exclusive" interview about his workout regime for their glossy title Men's Fitness.

Schwarzenegger's foibles have long been rumoured in the entertainment community. When he announced his intention to stand for Governor of California in 2003, his campaign was almost derailed by a string of women who claimed that he had groped or made inappropriate sexual advances towards them. At the time, journalist Wendy Leigh alleged in Britain's Daily Mail that a former flight attendant called Tammy Tousignant had given birth to his illegitimate son, Tanner, in the 1990s.

No US news organisation followed up the allegation. And while Tousignant yesterday denied that the boy (whose name is shared with Schwarzenegger's character in Total Recall) was the ex-governor's son, her lawyer said that a paternity test had been carried out.

Halperin, among others, now believes troubling questions must be asked about who really controls the US media. Shriver, he notes, is a scion of the Kennedy dynasty, which recently managed to have an unflattering TV drama about the family, starring Katie Holmes, dropped by The History Channel.

"It's a matter of justice," said Halperin. "America deserves to have a free press which isn't controlled from behind the scenes. I feel bad for the taxpayers of California. They are only now learning how this man behaved, on their dime. And who knows how many other cheating politicians are still out there?"

News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Lena Dunham
booksLena Dunham's memoirs - written at the age of 28 - are honest to the point of making you squirm
Arts and Entertainment
A bit rich: Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey
tvDownton Abbey review: It's six months since we last caught up with the Crawley clan
Sport
Frank Lampard and his non-celebration
premier leagueManchester City vs Chelsea match report from the Etihad Stadium
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
techNew app offers 'PG alternative' to dating services like Tinder
News
Jacqueline Bisset has claimed that young women today are obsessed with being 'hot', rather than 'charming', 'romantic' or 'beautiful'
people
Arts and Entertainment
Jake Quickenden sings his heart out in his second audition
tvX Factor: How did the Jakes - and Charlie Martinez - fare?
Sport
premier league
Arts and Entertainment
'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
tvOnly remaining original cast-member to leave crime series
Sport
Mario Balotelli celebrates his first Liverpool goal
premier leagueLiverpool striker expressed his opinion about the 5-3 thriller with Leicester - then this happened
News
Britain's shadow chancellor Ed Balls (L) challenges reporter Rob Merrick for the ball during the Labour Party versus the media soccer match,
peopleReporter left bleeding after tackle from shadow Chancellor in annual political football match
Arts and Entertainment
Female fans want more explicit male sex in Game of Thrones, George R R Martin says
tvSpoiler warning: Star of George RR Martin's hit series says viewers have 'not seen the last' of him/her
News
i100
News
i100
Sport
Plenty to ponder: Amir Khan has had repeated problems with US immigration because of his Muslim faith and now American television may shun him
boxing
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Head of Marketing and Communications - London - up to £80,000

£70000 - £80000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Group Head of Marketing and Communic...

Nursery Nurse

Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: Level 3 Nursery Nurse required for ...

Nursery Nurse

Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: L3 Nursery Nurses urgently required...

SEN Teaching Assistant

Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: We have a number of schools based S...

Day In a Page

A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments