12 Scandalous Facts About Audrey Hepburn’s Love Life You Should Know

The naughtiness behind the picture perfect lady. Actress, dancer and humanitarian, Audrey Hepburn was, for all of her life, the ideal of femininity, gentility and all around perfection.

But what kind of secrets did she keep? Read on to find out the fabulously scandalous things you never would have guessed about Audrey Hepburn’s love life.

  1. Hepburn’s first serious love was with James Hanson (a young British businessman). They were engaged in 1952, but after setting a date and having the dress made, she realized that the nature of both their careers would keep them apart for too long. Hepburn gave the dress to an Italian couple, who have it to this day.
Audrey Hepburn with her fiancé James Hanson in Rome, Italy, August 27th, 1952.

2. Also in the 1950s, Hepburn dated the American theatrical producer Michael Butler. Butler would go on to produce the musical Hair.

Audrey Hepburn at the Creek Club, Locust Valley in 1952. Photograph by Michael Butler.

3. During the filming of Sabrina, Hepburn began a relationship with actor William Holden, who was already married. Hepburn had planned to marry Holden and start a family with him, but dropped the idea when she learned he’d had a vasectomy.

Audrey Hepburn and William Holden chat on the set of Sabrina, 1954.

4. In 1954, Hepburn met the American actor Mel Ferrer at a cocktail party hosted by lifelong friend Gregory Peck. After working together on the play Ondine, they eventually fell in love and married in Bürgenstock, Switzerland in September of that year.

Mel Ferrer buttons up his coat around Audrey Hepburn on a country road outside Paris, 1956.

5. With Ferrer, Hepburn had two miscarriages (the first in 1955 and the second in 1959), before giving birth to the couple’s only child, a boy names Sean Hepburn Ferrer born in July of 1960. She would have two more miscarriages, in 1965 and 1967.

Audrey Hepburn pictured with her husband, Mel Ferrer, and new born son, Sean Hepburn Ferrer. Audrey gave birth to Sean on July 17, 1960.

6. During her marriage to Ferrer, there were rumors of infidelity on both sides, with Ferrer having a girlfriend and Hepburn having an affair with her co-star Albert Finney.

Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney in Two for the Road, 1967.

7. After 14 years together, Hepburn and Ferrer divorced in December of 1968. She would speak to him only two more times for the rest of her life.

Audrey Hepburn with Mel Ferrer at London Airport, January 19, 1965.

8. Soon after her divorce, Hepburn met and fell in love with Italian psychiatrist Andrea Dotti while traveling with Princess Olimpia Emmanuela Torlonia di Civitella-Cesi. She stated that she fell in love with him while exploring Greek ruins. The couple went on to marry in January of 1969.

On January 18, 1969, at age 39, Audrey Hepburn married Italian psychiatrist Andrea Dotti. The ceremony was held at the town hall in Morges, Switzerland.

9. Hepburn had one son with Dotti, Luca, born in February of 1970. His birth was followed by another miscarriage in 1974.

Audrey Hepburn with her son Luca.

10. Once again, infidelity was present in her marriage. Dotti took to younger women, while Hepburn had an affair with another actor, Ben Gazzara.

Ben Gazzara and Audrey Hepburn in 1981.

11. The couple divorced after 13 years together, finalizing the end of their marriage in 1982.

Audrey Hepburn and Dr. Andrea Dotti photographed in downtown Rome, September 8, 1971.

12. Hepburn spent the rest of her life (from 1980 to 1993) with the Dutch actor Robert Wolders. In 1989, she declared the time they had spent together the happiest of her life.

Audrey Hepburn and Robert Wolders in 1986.

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