Who was Katharine Hepburn? Delve deeper into the life of Katharine Houghton Hepburn with Know The Facts to learn about the woman that epitomised the “modern woman” of the 20th century.
The leading lady of Hollywood, whose career spanned over 60 years, Katharine Houghton Hepburn, was known for her lively character and bluntness. She was a well-known American film, stage, and television actress.
Katharine worked in a variety of genres, ranging from screwball comedy to literary drama. In 1999, Hepburn was named the greatest female star of classic Hollywood cinema by the American Film Institute.
Hepburn’s acting career Katharine’s success on Broadway was her ticket to Hollywood. In her initial years, her acting in films brought her global popularity. This included an Academy Award for Best Actress for her third film, Morning Glory (1933). Unfortunately for her, her career saw a range of commercial film failures. A big disappointment included Bringing Up Baby (1938). Hepburn planned her own rebound. She bought out her agreement with RKO Radio Pictures and obtained the film privileges for The Philadelphia Story. She sold it with the condition that she would be the star.
Philly Story was a film industry achievement and handed her a third Academy Award nomination. In the 1940s, Hepburn had signed a contract with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. There, her acting career focused on an alliance with Spencer Tracy. The partnership lasted 26 years, and nine films were produced as a result. In the latter years of her life, Hepburn started taking part in Shakespearean stage productions.
She started playing a range of literary roles. She found her specialty in playing the roles of middle-aged women, like in the film The African Queen (1951). This persona was welcomed by the public. Hepburn received three more Academy Awards for her performances in Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner (1967), The Lion in Winter (1968), and On Golden Pond (1981). During the 1970s, she started showing up in TV films, which later became her focus.
Interesting facts about Katharine Houghton Hepburn
Contrary to what one might think, Katharine Hepburn was not a naturally gifted actress. She used to prefer reading the text and studying the character beforehand, along with multiple rehearsals. Apart from that, she preferred that there were multiple takes of a scene to ensure the perfect execution of her role. Hepburn is known for giving her opinions regarding everything, ranging from the script to costumes. Hepburn mostly played the role of a strong, independent, smart, and rich woman. The personalities of the characters she played on screen were similar to her own personality. This was something Hepburn herself agreed about.
The “modern woman”
Hepburn rejected the Hollywood publicity machine. She refused to conform to societal expectations of women. She is famous for wearing trousers before they were fashionable for women. Hepburn was a woman known for living independently. She lived as a married young woman for a few years and never remarried again.
With her out of the ordinary lifestyle and the portrayal of independent characters, Hepburn exemplified the “modern woman” in the 20th-century United States. She is remembered as an important cultural figure. Hepburn’s lifestyle was ahead of her time; she played an important part in changing people’s views on
She made her final screen appearance at the age of After a period of ill health, Hepburn died on June 29, 2003, at the age of 96.
Hepburn won four Academy Awards, an actual feat, and received 12 Oscar nominations for Best Actress. She received two awards and five nominations from the British Academy Film Awards; one award and six nominations from the Emmy Awards; eight Golden Globe nominations; two Tony Award nominations; and awards from the Cannes Film Festival, Venice Film Festival, the New York Film Critics Circle Awards, the People’s Choice Awards, and others.
Hepburn was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame in She also won a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Screen Actors Guild in 1979. She also received the Kennedy Center Honors, which recognised her lifetime achievements in the performing arts, in 1990.