June 12, 2014 at 10:44 AM ET
When it comes to romance, almost everyone has a story about the one that got away. But for venerable television journalist Barbara Walters, her "one" was actor-director Clint Eastwood, and he got away more than once.
Actually, as Walters revealed on "The Tonight Show" Wednesday, she was the one who walked away from her first opportunity with the star.
"This is a sad love story," she said. "I did this interview with Clint Eastwood something like 30 years ago. He was very flirtatious, and I was very taken (with him). He asked me if I wanted to have dinner ... and I said, 'No, I have to work.' You know, I don't mix business with pleasure."
Soon she saw the error of her ways and came to a realization: "I could have been Mrs. Clint Eastwood!"
That was a sentiment she never forgot over the years, even as she and Eastwood both went on to marry (and divorce) others. So when Walters recently had the opportunity to meet the man again — this time at the premiere of his new film, "Jersey Boys" — she made sure she wouldn't make the same mistake she made all those years ago.
"I thought maybe it's not too late," she explained. "I'm not kidding. I really did. I put on the right outfit. The false eyelashes — the whole thing."
Alas, her seduction plan went amiss.
"He was ... polite," Walters recalled. "He was courteous. What's that expression? He was just not (that) into me."
While the 84-year-old said she's "still crying about it," "Tonight" host Jimmy Fallon offered her some girlfriend-worthy support.
"You don't need him anyway!" he assured her.
Check out the clips to see Walters share a special — though not at all seductive — moment with Fallon.
"The Tonight Show" airs weeknights at 11:35 on NBC.
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