Hot off our rant about the “good ‘ol days,” we’re diving into the Hollywood scandals during the Golden Age of cinema. And no, we don’t mean Trump’s 10+ acting credits during the ’90s.
We’re referring to the era when at least one film was released per year that wasn’t a sequel, prequel, franchise reboot, or comic book property.
The divorce that never was: Katharine Hepburn’s 25-year affair
Spencer Tracy is almost as famous for his semi-secret relationship with Katharine Hepburn as he is for acting. Because despite being married with two children, Tracy was as much a family man as Charlie Sheen is a poster child for the anti-drug movement.
After several affairs and moving out of the family home, Spencer Tracy started seeing Katharine Hepburn in 1941. Even though just about everyone in Hollywood knew what was going on, MGM Studios went to great lengths to keep the couple’s secret.
Spencer passed away after 25 years of “absolute bliss” with Hepburn. And despite his almost nonexistent relationship with wife and kids, Hepburn decided not to attend his funeral to honor his family.
Which is pretty classy compared to the scandals of today. Remember that time a cocktail waitress sold the movie rights to her affair with Tiger Woods for $100K?
Charlie Chaplin stole the spotlight in the ’30s and headlines in the ’40s
Most know him as the famous silent film actor, but few realize that during his heyday, Chaplin got more media attention than all the Kardashians combined.
It all started years after a dramatic extramarital affair with aspiring actress Joan Berry, who filed a paternity suit against Charlie regarding her two-year-old daughter.
Unfortunately for Chaplin, California courts didn’t allow blood tests to be admitted as evidence. Because even by 1940s standards, science was definitely on his side. He was type O, Berry was type A, and “their” child was B. Nevertheless, Chaplin was forced to pay child support until the child was 21.
But in a heroic effort to get out of the spotlight, Chaplin married his 18-year-old protégée soon after his 54th birthday.
The closest we get to that in recent history was when 38-year-old Jerry Seinfeld dated a high school senior for a while.
Hollywood scandals were more dramatic...Congress was about the same
After girl-next-door roles in movies like Casablanca, it was pretty hard to believe that Ingrid Bergman not only had an affair with the director of one of her movies, but that she was also having his child.
US Senator Edwin Jackson was so offended by her attack on the institution of marriage that he took to the Senate floor to denounce Bergman’s “moral turpitude,” and formally request that she be banned from returning to America after filming wrapped.
Jackson’s request never went to a vote, but the movie that caused all the drama, Stromboli, flopped at the box office nonetheless. The same month it was released, she gave birth, divorced her husband, and flew to Mexico to marry the director.
Just imagine how things would’ve turned out if Angelina Jolie announced she was pregnant after filming Mr. and Mrs. Smith with Brad Pitt.
And George W. Bush banned them from living in the US.
Actually, nevermind. In retrospect we’re kind of surprised that wasn’t how it actually turned out.
Rock and Roll Hall of Famer keeps it in the family
Jerry Lee Lewis, the artist most famous for Great Balls of Fire, wasn’t quite as lucky as Bergman however. After the press found out who his third wife really was, he was blacklisted by every radio station and TV program in the country.
You see, Jerry Lee Lewis’s cousin Jay had a daughter named Myra. And Jerry married her.
Mrya was 13 years old at the time of their marriage.
The kissing cousins divorced when Myra was 26.
Sure, Justin Gaston dated Miley Cyrus when she was only 15 years old, but by then she’d already posed topless in Vanity Fair. And the two weren’t cousins.
The next time someone is ranting and raving about Hollywood’s moral decline, you can easily refute their claims. Celebrity divorce scandals bottomed out long before TMZ started beaming them directly to your smartphone.
Call us today and ask for our T-Woods divorce package. It’s a regular divorce, without the $100 million settlement.