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Audrey Hepburn


Real name: Ruston, Andrey Kathleen
Birthdate: 4 May 1929, Brussels, Belgium
Date of death: 20 January 1993, Tolochenaz, Switzerland. (colon cancer)
Height: 5' 7"

  • 'Andrea Dotti' (18 January 1969 - 1982) (divorced)
  • 'Mel Ferrer' (25 September 1954 - 5 December 1968) (divorced)
    Today presence:
  • (1988-1993), she served as goodwill ambassador for the United Nations' Children's Fund


    'Audrey Hepburn' was born on May 4, 1929 in Brussels, Belgium. She really was blue-blood from the beginning with her father, a wealthy English banker, and her mother, a Dutch baroness. After her parents divorced, Audrey went to London with her mother where she went to a private girls school. Later, when her mother moved back to the Netherlands, she attended private schools as well. While vacationing with her mother in Arnhem, Holland, Hitler's army took over the town. It was here that she fell on hard times during the Nazi occupation. Audrey suffered from depression and malnutrition. After the liberation, Audrey went to a ballet school in London on a scholarship and later began a modeling career. As a model, she was graceful and, it seemed, she had found her niche in life--until the film producers came calling. After being spotted modeling by a producer, she was signed to a bit part in the European film 'Nederlands in 7 lessen (1948)' in 1948. Later, she had a speaking role in the 1951 film, 'Young Wives' Tale (1951)' as Eve Lester. The part still wasn't much, so she headed to America to try her luck there. Audrey gained immediate prominence in the US with her role in 'Roman Holiday (1953)' in 1953. This film turned out to be a smashing success as she won an Oscar as Best Actress. This gained her enormous popularity and more plum roles. One of the reasons for her popularity was the fact that she was so elf like and had class, unlike the sex-goddesses of the time. Roman Holiday was followed by another similarly wonderful performance in the 1957 classic 'Funny Face (1957)' . 0047437, in 1954, for which she received another Academy nomination, and 'Love in the Afternoon (1957)' , in 1957, also garnered rave reviews. In 1959, she received yet another nomination for her role in 'Nun's Story (1959). Audrey reached the pinnacle of her career when she played Holly Golightly in the delightful film, 'Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961)' in 1961. For this she received another nomination. One of Audrey's most radiant roles was in the fine production of 'My Fair Lady (1964)' , in 1964. Her co-star 'Rex Harrison' once was asked to identify his favorite leading lady. Without hesitation, he replied, "Audrey Hepburn in MY FAIR LADY". After a couple of other movies, she hit pay dirt and another nomination in 1967's 'Wait Until Dark (1967)' . By the end of the sixties, after her divorce from actor 'Mel Ferrer' , Audrey decided to retire while she was on top. Later she married Dr. Andrea Dotti. From time to time, she would appear on the silver screen. One film of note was 'Robin and Marian (1976)' with 'Sean Connery' in 1976. In 1988, Audrey became a special ambassador to the United Nations UNICEF fund helping children in Latin America and Africa, a position she retained until 1993. She was named to People's magazine as one of the 50 most beautiful people in the world. Her last film was 'Always (1989)' in 1989. Audrey Hepburn died on January 20, 1993 in Tolochnaz, Switzerland, from colon cancer. She had made a total of 31 high quality movies. Her elegance and style will always be remembered in film history as evidenced by her being named to Empire magazine's "The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time". Edda Hepburn was a cosmopolitan from birth as her father was an English banker and her mother a Dutch baroness. In the movies she appeared as a delicate adolescent, a look which remained until her last movie 'Always (1989)' directed by 'Steven Spielberg' . Her career as actress began in the English cinema and after having been selected for the Broadway musical "Gigi" she debuted in Hollywood in 1953. With 'Roman Holiday (1953)' she won an oscar; her favorite genres were the comedies like 'Sabrina (1954)' or 'Love in the Afternoon (1957)' . At the end of the sixties she retired from Hollywood but appeared from time on the set for a few films. From 1988 on she worked also for UNICEF.
    Author: Denny Jackson Volker Boehm


    64th Annual Academy Awards, The (1992) (TV) (uncredited) [Presenter - Honorary Award to Satyajit Ray]
    Always (1989) [Hap] <5>
    Audrey Hepburn Story, The (2000) (TV) (archive footage) (uncredited) [Herself in UNICEF footage]
    Audrey Hepburn: Remembered (1993) (TV) [Herself]
    Bloodline (1979) [Elizabeth Roffe] <1>
    Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961) [Holly Golightly (Lulamae Barnes)] <1>
    Charade (1963) [Regina 'Reggie' Lampert] <2>
    Children's Hour, The (1961) [Karen Wright] <1>
    Directed by William Wyler (1986) [Herself]
    Fred Astaire Songbook, The (1991) (TV) [Host] <1>
    Funny Face (1957) [Jo Stockton] <1>
    Green Mansions (1959) [Rima] <1>
    How to Steal a Million (1966) [Nicole Bonnet] <1>
    If These Walls Could Talk 2 (2000) (TV) (archive footage) (uncredited) [Footage from The Children's Hour (segment "1961")]
    Intimate Portrait: Audrey Hepburn (1996) (TV) (archive footage) [Herself]
    Laughter in Paradise (1951) [Cigarette girl] <21>
    Lavender Hill Mob, The (1951) [Chiquita] <15>
    Love Among Thieves (1987) (TV) [Baroness Caroline DuLac]
    Love Goddesses, The (1965) [Herself]
    Love in the Afternoon (1957) [Ariane Chavasse] <2>
    Making of 'My Fair Lady', The (1994) (V) (archive footage) [Herself]
    Monte Carlo Baby (1951) [Linda Farrel]
    My Fair Lady (1964) [Eliza Doolittle] <1>
    Nederlands in 7 lessen (1948) (uncredited) [KLM stewardess]
    Nous irons ŕ Monte Carlo (1952) [Melissa Walter]
    Nun's Story, The (1959) [Sister Luke (Gabrielle van der Mal)] <1>
    One Wild Oat (1951) [Hotel Receptionist]
    Paris - When It Sizzles (1964) [Gabrielle Simpson] <2>
    Robin and Marian (1976) [Lady Marian] <2>
    Roger Moore: A Matter of Class (1995) (TV) (archive footage) [Herself]
    Roman Holiday (1953) [Princess Ann aka Anya Smith] <2>
    Sabrina (1954) [Sabrina Fairchild] <2>
    Salute to Billy Wilder, A (1986) (TV) [Herself]
    Salute to William Wyler, A (1976) (TV) [Herself]
    Secret People, The (1952) [Nora]
    They All Laughed (1981) [Angela Niotes] <1>
    Two for the Road (1967) [Joanna Wallace] <1>
    Unforgiven, The (1960) [Rachel Zachary] <2>
    Wait Until Dark (1967) [Suzy Hendrix] <1>
    War and Peace (1956) [Natasha Rostov] <1>
    World of Love, A (1971) (TV) [Host]
    Young Wives' Tale (1951) [Eve Lester] <7>
    "Gardens of the World with Audrey Hepburn" (1993) (mini) [Host] <1>
    "Producers' Showcase" (1954) {Mayerling (1957)} [Marie Vetsera]

    Guest apperance(s)

  • '"Producers' Showcase" (1954)' , as Maria Vetsera (episode 'Mayerling (2/4/1957)')


  • Was first choice for the lead in 'Taste of Honey, A (1961)' .
  • (October 1997) Ranked #50 in Empire (UK) magazine's "The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time" list.
  • Mother of 'Sean H. Ferrer' , with first husband, 'Mel Ferrer' .
  • Son, Luca Dotti (b. 8 February 1970), with second husband, Dr. Andrea Dotti.
  • (1990) Chosen by People magazine as one of the 50 Most Beautiful People in the world.
  • After "Wait Until Dark" was offered the leads in "Forty Carats, " "Nicholas and Alexandria" and "The Turning Point" but decided to stay in retirement and raise her sons.
  • Interred in Tolochenaz, Vaud, Switzerland.
  • (1995) Chosen by Empire magazine as one of the 100 Sexiest Stars in film history (#8).
  • Turned down the film "Gigi" after creating the character in the Broadway nonmusical play.
  • Everyone remembers when 'Marilyn Monroe' serenaded President John F. Kennedy on his birthday in 1962. What is often forgotten is that Audrey Hepburn sang "Happy Birthday Mr. President" to JFK for his final birthday in 1963.
  • Had a breed of tulip named after her in 1990.
  • Died on January 20, 1993, the 67th birthday of 'Patricia Neal' . They starred together in 'Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961)' .
  • Audrey Hepburn won the 1953 Best Actress Academy Award for 'Roman Holiday (1953)' . On March 25th, 1954, she accepted the award from the much revered Academy president Jean Hersholt. After accepting the award, Audrey kissed him smack on the mouth, instead of the cheek, in childish excitement. Minutes after accepting her 1953 Oscar, Audrey realized that she'd misplaced it. Turning quickly on the steps of the Center Theater in New York, she raced back to the ladies' room, retrieved the award, and was ready to pose for photographs.
  • Christened simply Andrey Kathleen Ruston, the actress was later known briefly as Edda van Heemstra Hepburn-Ruston by her societally conscious and aspiring mother. "Andrey" is rarely used feminine version of Andre or Andrei.
  • Is descended from a long line of royals, her mother was a baroness and Audrey is related to, among others, Queen Wilhemina of Holland and Mary Queen of Scots
  • Was fluent in English, Spanish, French, Dutch, Italian, and Flemish.
  • Was briefly considered for the main role in 'Cleopatra (1963)' but the part went to 'Elizabeth Taylor'
  • She confessed to eating tulip bulbs and tried to bake grass into bread during the hard days of World War II.
  • Audrey felt that she was miscast as Holly Golightly in 'Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961)' although it was one of her most popular roles.
  • Fell in love with William Holden, her co-star in 'Sabrina (1954)' but broke off the relationship on learning that Holden could not have children.
  • Was trained as a dental assistant before making it big.
  • Broke her back during filming of a horse-riding scene in 'Unforgiven, The (1960)'


  • "I never thought I'd land in pictures with a face like mine."
  • "I was asked to act when I couldn't act. I was asked to sing 'Funny Face' when I couldn't sing and dance with Fred Astaire when I couldn't dance - and do all kinds of things I wasn't prepared for. Then I tried like mad to cope with it."
  • "Remember, if you ever need a helping hand, it's at the end of your arm, as you get older, remember you have another hand: The first is to help yourself, the second is to help others."
  • "I liked her a lot; in fact, I loved Audrey. It was easy to love her" - Gregory Peck
  • "In a cruel and imperfect world, she was living proof that God could still create perfection." - Rex Reed
  • "She was the first to make something that's not sexy, sexy." - Cynthia Rowley
  • "'Moon River' was written for her. No one else had ever understood it so completely. There have been more than a thousand versions of 'Moon River', but hers is inquestionably the greatest". - Henry Mancini
  • "My own life has been much more than a fairy tale. I've had my share of difficult moments, but whatever difficulties I've gone through, I've always gotten a prize at the end."
  • "For me, the only things of interest are those linked to the heart."
  • Her screen presence was defined, in the words of Gregory Peck, as "a magical combination of high chic and high spirits".
  • "I probably hold the distinction of being one movie star who, by all laws of logic, should never have made it. At each stage of my career, I lacked the experience."
  • "After so many drive-in waitresses - it has been a real drought - here is class, somebody who went to school, can spell, and possibly play the piano... She's a wispy, thin little thing, but you're really in the presence of somebody when you see that girl." - Billy Wilder
  • "There was proof that looking good need not be synonymous with looking bimbo. Thanks to their first glimpse of Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday, half a generation of young females stopped stuffing their bras and teetering on stiletto heels." - New York Times
  • "I know I have more sex appeal on the tip of my nose than many women in their entire bodies. It doesn't stand out a mile, but it's there." "Success is like reaching an important birthday and finding you're exactly the same." "My look is attainable. Women can look like Audrey Hepburn by flipping out their hair, buying the large sunglasses, and the little sleeveless dresses." "I never think of myself as an icon. What is in other people's minds is not in my mind. I just do my thing." "I was born with an enormous need for affection, and a terrible need to give it."

    Filming Salary

  • 'My Fair Lady (1964)' -> $ 1.1 million
  • 'Unforgiven, The (1960)' -> $200,000
  • 'War and Peace (1956)' -> $130,000
  • 'Sabrina (1954)' -> $15,000

    Book(s) Biography

  • "Audrey Hepburn, A Celebration", Sheridan Morley
  • "Audrey: Her Real Story", Alexander Walker
  • "Adieu Audrey", Klaus-Jörgen Sembach
  • "A star danced the life of Audrey Hepburn", Robyn Karney
  • "Audrey Hepburn", Norbert Stresau
  • "Cinema Star Album: Audrey Hepburn", Seattle o.J.
  • "Audrey Hepburn", Börge Heed/Torsten Quensel (Stockholm 1954)
  • "Audrey. The Life Of Audrey Hepburn", Charles Higham (New York 1985)
  • "Audrey Hepburn", Caroline Latham (New York 1984)
  • "Audrey Hepburn", Ian Woodward (London 1984)
  • Hofstede, David. "Audrey Hepburn: a bio-bibliography" (Greenwood, 1994)
  • Sheridan Morley. 'Audrey Hepburn: A Celebration.' Parkgate Road, London: Pavilion Books Limited, 1999. ISBN 1857932676
  • Warren G. Harris. 'Audrey Hepburn.' 1994.

    Film(s) Biography

  • 'Audrey Hepburn Story, The (2000) (TV)'


  • "Beau Monde" (Hungary), October 2001, Vol. 2, Iss. 10, pg. 41-43, by: Éva Szilágyi, "Az álomváros ladyje"
  • "New Zealand TV Guide" (New Zealand), 12 May 2001, pg. 23, "Hepburn hid life of strife"
  • "Notícias Vídeo" (Portugal), Iss. 2, April 1999, pg. 37, by: Joăo Lopes, "Eterna serenidade"
  • "American Movie Classics" (USA), August 1998
  • "Biography" (USA), August 1998, Vol. 2, Iss. 8, pg. 46-54, by: Polly Flonder, "The Immortal Audrey Hepburn"
  • "Empire" (UK), October 1997, Iss. 100, pg. 197 by: Ian Freer and Jake Hamilton, "The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time"
  • "People Extra" (USA), Winter 1993, pg. 6-73, "A Tribute to Audrey Hepburn"
  • "Ekraan" (Estonia), August 1989, Iss. 7, pg. 13-14, by: Ivar Kümnik,
  • "Ekraan" (Estonia), August 1989, Iss. 7, pg. 13-14, by: Ivar K|mnik,

    Cover photo(s)

  • "People Extra" (USA), Winter 1993
  • "Women's Weekly" (Australia), 13 March 1976
  • "Roadshow" (Japan), January 1975
  • "Vogue" (UK), April 1971
  • "Eiga no tomo" (Japan), May 1967
  • "Stern" (West Germany), 26 July 1964
  • "Stern" (Germany), 5 April 1964, Iss. 14
  • "Screen Stories" (USA), October 1961
  • "Epoca" (Italy), 27 November 1960
  • "Epoca" (Italy), 18 May 1958
  • "Stern" (West Germany), 1954, Iss. 20
  • "Stern" (West Germany), 1953, Iss. 38
  • "Look" (USA), 12 February 1952
  • "Picture Post" (UK), 15 December 1951

    Other work(s)

  • Seven Poems For Audrey Hepburn - by Michel Joseph Phillips (Bloomington 1968)
  • Stage: "Gigi"
  • Stage: "Ondine" (1954)
  • 1990: Organized "Concerts for Life" benefit performances in support of UNICEF, featuring Audrey reading from the diaries of Anne Frank.
  • 1990: Recorded several tapes/CDs of fairy tales for Dove Audio.
  • TV commercial for Varie wigs - Japan (1971)
  • LP Soundtrack: Funny Face (1957) includes several vocals by Hepburn. Later re-issued on CD.
  • Single: How Long as This Been Going On?/On How to be Lovely (Verve Records, 1957). From the soundtrack to Funny Face.
  • Her vocal of "Moon River" in Breakfast at Tiffany's was released for the first time on CD: Music From the Films of Audrey Hepburn, 1993.
  • Stage: High Button Shoes (Hippodrome, London), 1948-1949.
  • Stage: Sauce Piquante (Cambridge Theatre, London), 1950. Co-starred with Norman Wisdom and Bob Monkhouse.
  • Stage: Sauce Tartare (Cambridge Theatre, London), 1949.
  • Hepburn said she made a number of appearances on British TV c.1950-51. Unfortunately no films or recordings of these performances survive.
  • Appeared in UK and European print ads for various products, 1950-1952.
  • Images of Hepburn as Holly Golightly from Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961) are often used in print ads for Tiffany's and Co.
  • 1954: Hosted a short film to promote her play "Ondine."
  • Print ad for Givenchy perfume (1960s)
  • According to some biographies, Hepburn made at least one appearance on American TV in either 1952 or 1953, before reaching stardom with Roman Holiday (1953). It's possible this might have been an "import" of one of her British TV appearances.
  • Her 1957 TV production, Mayerling, was released theatrically in Europe.