Jane Fonda has led quite a life. She was born into one of Hollywood's royal families (son of Henry, sister of Peter), attended the notable Vassar College, studied with probably one of the greatest acting coaches of all time, Lee Strasberg, and made a boatload of films. At age 70, she has been nominated seven times for and won two Academy Awards, gave Meryl Streep her start in cinema, has been an outspoken liberal and feminist, opposed the Vietnam war in spite of extraordinary criticism (the mere image of Fonda can still send conservatives into paroxysms of rage), served as workout queen (she's made a mind-blowing 22 videos), and will go down in history looking hotter in a fur bikini (in Barbarella) than most of us girls will ever be able to. Then she went and married Ted Turner (we don't get it, either), who asked her to retire her acting career, which she did until she and Turner separated and she became a born-again Christian, whereupon she made her return to cinema with the rather inauspicious Monster-in-Law and the Garry Marshall-directed Georgia Rule.
On Saturday, she'll appear at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center to discuss her storied career as well as her political activism. Barbara Walters called her one of the most important women of the 20th Century. Go and see what wisdom you can glean from a woman who clearly has a yarn or two to tell.
Jane Fonda at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center, 6200 Atherton Blvd., Long Beach, (562) 985-4274; www.carpenterarts.org. Sat., 8 p.m. $50-$55.