As of right now I am exultingly happy. I have finally finished exam week (two in a row!), and I spent the last six hours sound asleep. It's more sleep than I got any night in the past two weeks, when I would go to bed around two-thirty and was up three hours later. Eek! Torture! But, thankfully, all that is gone now. And as of this moment I am hearing Keeper of the Flame (1942) playing on the background, my homegirl's lovely voice entering my ears for the first time in probably over a month. Oh, how I missed her! Being busy is a bore.
As for today's post, it's an idea I had one of these days in the car, and I realized it might be really fun to do. We talk about many male-female associations in the movie business, most of them being of married couples, or couples in one way or another romantically linked. What about those that didn't? Relatives, friends, or even just co-stars, all these couples have made a difference in the movie industry and in each other's lives without a romantic or sexual component to their relationship. Why don't we find out more about them?
1. Fred and Adele Astaire
Name Frederick Austerlitz Name Adele Marie Austerlitz
Stage Name Fred Astaire Stage Name Adele Astaire
Born May 10th 1899 Born September 10th 1896
Died June 22nd 1987 Died January 25th 1981
Known as Dancer Known as Dancer
Since the tender age of eight and four respectively, Adele and Fred Astaire danced together. They started off in Vaudeville, but by 1923 they had taken the London stage. Adele was then considered the most charismatic star of the duo but her 1931 marriage to the son of the Duke of Devonshire brought an untimely end to her career. The two remained the best of friends, despite the radical difference in lifestyle after Fred became more and more famous and celebrated. In 1936 she visited Hollywood, inclined to make a movie there, but decided to sit it out, intimidated by her brother's fame. Those who have had the privilege of seeing Adele live say that she could have been one of our greats, along with her brother. The siblings had very different personalities: while Fred was shy and quiet, Adele was fun-loving and sociable. An unforgettable pair, while it lasted.
2. Katharine Hepburn and George Cukor
Name George Dewey Cukor Name Katharine Houghton Hepburn
Stage Name George Cukor Stage Name Katharine Hepburn
Born July 7th 1899 Born May 12th 1907
Died January 24th 1983 Died June 29th 2003
Known as Director Known as Actress
Their partnership resulted in ten movies of pure gold. She was a terrified newcomer, but he saw her as a potential muse. They became friends, neighbours, confidantes. The "women's director" had one woman only: And her name was Katharine Hepburn. Romantically speaking, nothing ever happened between them (Cukor was the leader of the gay subculture on the Golden Age of Hollywood), but their relationship was the platonic love of an artist and his statue. George Cukor helped her blossom into the unique legend she is today, both in her professional life - by directing her to perfection and allowing his movies to focus on her - and in her personal life - by being a patient listener and a faithful friend, to an overall difficult personality. They were the best of friends for 50 years, and if that is not the most beautiful feeling in the world, I don't know what that would be.
3. Henry and Jane Fonda
Name Henry Jaynes Fonda Name Jayne Seymour Fonda
Stage Name Henry Fonda Stage Name Jane Fonda
Born May 16th 1905 Born December 21st 1937
Died August 12th 1982 Died Hopefully not anytime soon!
Known as Actor Known as Actress
Jane Fonda is the only person in this list who is still alive, and probably the one with the most public life out them all. Jane has no scruples about telling the world all about her life and relationships, and she has inspired many with how much she reflects on her own life and how well she knows herself. Which is why her difficult relationship with her father is no secret to the public. Since the suicide of her mother, Frances Ford Seymour, when Jane was only 12, she has strived to gain the approval of a busy father, always working on movies and plays. When she herself became an actress, he was not satisfied with her choice, but confided in her acting coach that she was the best actress he had ever seen. It's unquestionable that father and daughter loved each other immensely, but it's sad that the time when they finally acknowledged those feelings completely was very close to his death, through the movie On Golden Pond. When Jane picked up her father's Oscar for his role on that picture, she describes it as "the happiest moment of my life".
4. Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman
Name Ingrid Bergman Name Archibald Leach
Stage Name Ingrid Bergman Stage Name Cary Grant
Born August 29th 1915 Born January 18th 1904
Died August 29th 1982 Died November 29th 1986
Known as Actress Known as Actor
Ingrid Bergman and Cary Grant met in 1946, during the filming of Alfred Hitchcock's "Notorious". Hitch was so much in awe of the Swedish star that some say he was in love, but Cary Grant is said to have swept the heart right out of Ingrid's chest, even if only momentarily. They were both taken with infatuation for each other and a very deep admiration for each other's talent and personality. Nothing happened, and they soon found out their enchantment was about to turn into a very long lasting friendship. When Ingrid was shunned from the Hollywood screen for being pregnant with a married man's child, Cary was by her side, defending her. And in her triumphal comeback, Anastasia, he was the one to pick up her Oscar. He said "the Academy should have a special Award for Ingrid every year, whether she makes a movie or not". Their constant smiles and sweet personalities made them favorites of the crowd. When she died of breast cancer in 1982, Cary was sure he was not the only one losing a friend.
5. Elizabeth Taylor and Montgomery Clift
Name Elizabeth Rosemond Taylor Name Edward Montgomery Clift
Stage Name Elizabeth Taylor Stage Name Montgomery Clift
Born February 27th 1932 Born October 17th 1920
Died March 23rd 2011 Died July 23rd 1966
Known as Actress Known as Actor
Montgomery Clift was a troubled man. As much as Elizabeth Taylor was a troubled woman, she was nothing short of an angel for this friend. They met when he was a rising star, but she had been in the spotlight since her childhood. He was addicted to multiple drugs, but Elizabeth was always presenting herself as a persistent ear and with a readiness to help that could move anyone. In one night in 1956, after a party in Elizabeth's house, Monty suffered a serious car accident. She ran to the scene and as he saw the crashed, broken car, she didn't think twice. Climbed through a back window of broken glass and proceeded to remove the broken teeth that were obstructing Monty's throat, saving his life. Make no mistake, neither of them were perfect, but their friendship brought out the best in each other. Katharine Hepburn recalls that in 1959, when she made Suddenly Last Summer with the pair, Joseph L. Mankiewicz, the director, was less than sympathetic with Monty's problems. Elizabeth promptly defended him, even ultimately "converting" Hepburn to her side. He was uninsurable for that film, by the way, and was only cast because Elizabeth refused to do it without him. Love.