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When Reba McEntire worked with icon, Burt Reynolds, on The Man from Left Field, she found out he was using a hidden acting trick. But she didn’t judge the icon and said if she’d known such an option was available, she would have asked for the “assistance” herself.

So, what did McEntire catch Reynolds doing? And where on his body did she find evidence of his secret?

(L) Burt Reynolds in a red jacket and (R) Reba McEntire in a tan shirt
(L) Burt Reynolds | Jim Smeal/Ron Galella Collection/Getty Images (R) Reba McEntire | Steve Eichner/Getty Images

Reba McEntire: Burt Reynolds was a great actor and a great director

According to McEntire’s autobiography, Reba: My Story, she first got the chance to act with Reynolds on his show, Evening Shade. And following that experience with him, she said she felt he was a “great” actor and director. So, she was excited for the chance to work with him again for his film, The Man from Left Field.

It seems McEntire learned some new things about the actor during that time together. For instance, they shot the movie in Jupiter, Florida, where she found Reynolds was well known for giving back to the community. “They all think the world of him — just like I do,” she shared.

But McEntire said she also learned new techniques for her own acting from working with Reynolds. He talked “so slowly” that he inadvertently helped her learn to moderate her own speech in watching him.

“He’d look down at the tablecloth or stare into space when I thought he should be talking,” she noted. “But that was just the timing that makes him Burt Reynolds.”

Reba McEntire said, ‘Someone off camera was feeding Burt Reynolds his lines’

Burt Reynolds, in a tuxedo, kisses his Emmy statuette for his role in "Evening Shade"
Burt Reynolds | Scott Flynn/AFP/Getty Images

While working on a scene where Reynolds was required to recite what seemed to McEntire like a lot of dialogue, she began to notice something just a little unusual.

“If I’d thought about it, I would have wondered how in the world he could memorize all of that,” the country star wrote in her autobiography. “Suddenly I heard a tiny, muffled voice.”

First, she wasn’t quite sure where the unexplained noise was coming from but stayed in character as she was supposed to do. However, she eventually realized what was happening when she saw the wire inside Reynolds’ shirt. “Someone off camera was feeding him his lines!” she wrote. “I thought that was clever.”

And McEntire didn’t imply it took away from his credibility as an actor in the least. In fact, she said she might have done it herself if she had known the “assistance” was an option.

Reba McEntire paid tribute to ‘good friend’ Burt Reynolds when he died


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On Sept. 6, 2018, Reynolds died of a heart attack at the age of 83. An actor to the end, he was cast in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and was practicing lines soon before he died per The Hollywood Reporter.

McEntire took to Twitter to wish her “good friend” luck in his “new journey.”

“I’ll never forget the wonderful times we spent together,” she wrote.