An Affair to Remember: The Remarkable Love Story of Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy

Howard Hughes. Tallulah Bankhead. Frank Sinatra. Marilyn Monroe. John F. Judy Garland.

Spencer Tracy

Hepburn eventually talked about the affair in conversations with her biographer, A. Scott Berg. I mean, I loved him. And I wanted to be with him. If I had left we would both have been miserable. But in a new documentary, which opens Friday in Bay Area theaters, a year-old Hollywood personality named Scotty Bowers insists that the Hepburn-and-Tracy affair never existed, according to reports.

George M. CohanHis full name was Spencer Bonaventure Tracy. Tracy’s distinguished career, his deep Catholicism, his devoted relationship.

Sign In. Edit Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner Showing all 35 items. In the scene near the end where Spencer Tracy gives his memorable soliloquy, Katharine Hepburn can be seen crying in the background. This was not acting: she knew how gravely ill her longtime lover was and was moved by his remarks about how true love endures through the years. Katharine Hepburn never saw the completed movie.

Katharine Hepburn Biography

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A close friend of Katharine Hepburn has shared little-known facts about the life of the iconic actress. For one, Peter Bulkeley said the star cherished her life on seclusion in Connecticut. He shared that Hepburn would spend her time in her family’s Fenwick house in Hartford, Connecticut, every summer. Every time Hepburn was in Fenwick, neighbors would not make a fuss, as reported by Closer Weekly. She was just one of us,” he said , referring to the very private Hepburn.

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Katharine Houghton Hepburn came from the kind of family that Spencer Tracy, in another life, might have wished for himself. Her paternal grandfather was an Episcopalian minister in Hanover County, Virginia, her grandmother a Powell, the family having lost a three-thousand-acre plantation during the Civil War despite having freed their slaves decades earlier. The Reverend Sewell Stavely Hepburn was known for his dramatic flair at the pulpit, a strain of talent that may have passed to his eldest granddaughter.

Her father, Thomas Norval Hepburn, was similarly gifted in oratory and, like Tracy, honed his skills in college. A born healer, Dr. In he became secretary of the Connecticut Social Hygiene Association, capping a crusade against venereal disease initiated by his wife, the former Katharine Martha Houghton. Hepburn was descended from money and position yet always held the less privileged in her sympathies and spent her life fighting for the vote, broad access to birth control and family planning services, and the right of free expression in all its permutations.

Four years later she married Tom Hepburn, who was then in his final year of medical school. Not wanting to practice in a big city, Tom took her to Hartford, where he became an intern and later a resident at the hospital. Her activism dated from a talk she attended on the struggle to gain voting rights for women, and was further galvanized by the great English suffragist Emmeline Pankhurst, who came to Hartford the following year and was a guest in the Hepburn home.

After Mrs. Kathy, the second eldest, was born in May She was a well-balanced child, quick-witted and creative, with the intensity of her mother, the good looks of her father, and the boundless energy of both. She grew into a spirited competitor, mastering golf, tennis, and swimming, and learned early on to go after whatever she wanted, which, as she grew into puberty, included men who interested or otherwise attracted her.

40 Celebrity Love Triangles That Rocked Hollywood

They co-starred in nine films and had a love affair that spanned decades, many calling it the worst-kept secret in Hollywood, but Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn didn’t even like each other when they first met. Introduced while filming Woman of the Year in , a thenyear-old Hepburn remarked to her leading man: “I fear I may be too tall for you, Mr. Someone else on set assured the actress year-old Tracy would “cut her down to size”.

A divorcee with a liberal background and no-nonsense attitude, Hepburn didn’t much impress the more conservative and religious Tracy when they first met, but as soon as they got in front of a camera their chemistry was palpable. Their witty banter and lingering looks were Hollywood gold, and the pair would go on to star in eight more films together, much to the delight of studio executives and fans.

It was a different story off-screen.

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Born in Hartford, Connecticut, in , Katharine Houghton Hepburn was the daughter of a surgeon and a suffragist whose enlightened opinions on venereal disease and birth control instilled a progressive lilt towards sexual politics. Aged 14 she discovered the dead body of her beloved brother, Tom, hanging from the ceiling. He was After graduation from Bryn Mawr College and parts with stock theatre companies, she asserted control of her career with the help of her first husband, Ludlow Ogden Smith, a wealthy Pennsylvanian businessman, and of other lovers.

Capitalising on the stage success of The Philadelphia Story whose rights her on-off flame Howard Hughes had bought for her , Hepburn agreed to let M. It was a monumental hit. She got him, and so it began.

Spencer Tracy bio sheds new light on an actor’s actor

But it was also their faith that caused the relationship to end after about a year. They had some rough times, but she was absolutely devoted to him. He was not reluctant to tell her to shut up. Jekyll and Mr.

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The story of the husband is well known – Spencer Tracy was a major Hollywood star, a magnificent Oscar winning actor and a towering, charismatic screen presence. The story of his wife and her magnificent life’s work, championing the cause of education of deaf children is not so well known. Her name was Louise Treadwell. She was an exceptional woman and this is her story. On the surface Spencer Tracy’s marriage was idyllic. He met Louise Treadwell, also an actress, at the start of his career, when she was actually better known than him.

They married in and had two children, John and Susan. In as Tracy began his meteoric rise through Hollywood, they moved to a ranch in Encino, California, where they lived for 19 years. The photographs of the time show a happy united family and a devoted husband and wife team. The reality was different.


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