Read High Society: Grace Kelly and Hollywood Online

Authors: Donald Spoto

Tags: #Biography & Autobiography, #Entertainment & Performing Arts, #Performing Arts, #Film & Video, #General

High Society: Grace Kelly and Hollywood

ALSO BY DONALD SPOTO
Spellbound by Beauty: Alfred Hitchcock and His Leading Ladies
Otherwise Engaged: The Life of Alan Bates
Joan: The Mysterious Life of a Heretic Who Became a Saint
Enchantment: The Life of Audrey Hepburn
In Silence: Why We Pray
Reluctant Saint: The Life of Francis of Assisi
Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis: A Life
The Hidden Jesus: A New Life
Diana—The Last Year
Notorious: The Life of Ingrid Bergman
Rebel: The Life and Legend of James Dean
The Decline and Fall of the House of Windsor
A Passion for Life: The Biography of Elizabeth Taylor
Marilyn Monroe: The Biography
Blue Angel: The Life of Marlene Dietrich
Laurence Olivier: A Biography
Madcap: The Life of Preston Sturges
Lenya: A Life
Falling in Love Again—Marlene Dietrich (A Photo-Essay)
The Kindness of Strangers: The Life of Tennessee Williams
The Dark Side of Genius: The Life of Alfred Hitchcock
Stanley Kramer, Film Maker
Camerado: Hollywood and the American Man
The Art of Alfred Hitchcock

FOR MY SISTERS-IN-LAW
Lissi Andersen and Hanne M
ller
,
with great admiration and loving gratitude

CONTENTS

 

 

 

   
Acknowledgments
  
   
Introduction
  
   
   
PART I  
Fade-In
(1929

1951)
  
One  
OFF THE MAIN LINE
  
Two  
THE STUDENT MODEL
  
   
   
PART II  
Action (1951

1956)
  
Three  
LESS IS MORE, OR NOT
  
Four  
L’AFFAIRE GABLE
  
Five  
OVER THE MOON
  
Six  
FRIENDS AND LOVERS
  
Seven  
CLIMBING OVER ROOFTOPS
  
Eight  
CRISIS
  
Nine  
PLAYING THE PRINCESS
  
   
   
PART III  
Fade-Out (1956 — 1982)
  
Ten  
HIGH SOCIETY REARRANGED
  
   
   
   
Notes
  
   
Bibliography
  
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
M
Y MAJOR DEBT OF GRATITUDE IS TO
G
RACE
K
ELLY
G
RIMALDI
, Princess of Monaco, who granted interviews without which this book would not be possible.
Many of those who knew or collaborated with her are no longer with us, but I was able to discuss Grace with the following before or during research for several other books. I acknowledge, therefore, the late Jay Presson Allen, Peggy Ashcroft, Anne Baxter, Ingrid Bergman, Herbert Coleman, Joseph Cotten, Hume Cronyn, Cary Grant, Tom Helmore, Alfred Hitchcock, Evan Hunter, Stanley Kramer, Ernest Lehman, Simon Oakland, Gregory Peck, Peggy Robertson, James Stewart, Jessica Tandy, Samuel Taylor, Teresa Wright and Fred Zinnemann.
All of Grace’s directors, along with almost everyone who acted with her, are deceased. I am especially grateful, therefore, for the reminiscences of those actors and friends of Grace still available to supplement my interviews—among them, John Ericson, Rita Gam, Edward Meeks and Jacqueline Monsigny.
T
HANKS TO
G
ARY
B
ROWNING
, assistant visitor services manager at the Museum of Television and Radio, Beverly Hills, I was able to see many of Grace’s television appearances. Mark Gens and the staff of the Archive and Research Study Center at the University of California, Los Angeles, made additional kinescopes of her performances available to me.
As so often, I was welcomed and helped by the dedicated staff at the Margaret Herrick Library of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Beverly Hills—in particular by Stacey Behlmer and Barbara Hall.
Tom Smith provided research assistance in England, and Jonathan Boone in the United States; I acknowledge their thoroughness and alacrity.
In 2007 the Forum Grimaldi, Monte-Carlo, mounted a tribute in dozens of rooms of its vast conference hall—a celebration of Grace’s life and career twenty-five years after her death. For the first time, Prince Albert and Princesses Caroline and Stéphanie made public some very important documents, letters and photos.
Claus Kjær and Stine Nielsen at the Danish Film Institute, Copenhagen, provided important assistance during my research.
My friend the actress Diane Baker first introduced me to the prolific French writer Jacqueline Monsigny and her husband, the actor Edward Meeks. At Grace’s request, Jacqueline wrote and Edward costarred in Grace’s last film
—Rearranged
, which has remained unavailable to the public since its production not long before the death of the princess. Thanks to Jacqueline and Edward, I was able to see this remarkable movie several times and to treat it at length in this book. They were close friends of Grace for over twenty years, and my interviews with them have provided unique and valuable material.
Not for the first time, and surely not for the last, my brother-in-law John M
ller devoted his time and considerable talents to several important tasks in preparing this book for publication. Once again, I salute his artistic and technical gifts.
For various acts of kindness, I am grateful to John Darretta, Lewis Falb, Sue Jett, Irene Mahoney and Gerald Pinciss.
M
Y
N
EW
Y
ORK AGENT
, E
LAINE
M
ARKSON
, has been a devoted friend and trusted confidante for over thirty years. I am equally fortunate in the constant help and affectionate encouragement of her associates, Gary Johnson, Geri Thoma and Julia Kenny.
Elaine introduced me to the good people at the Harmony Books division of Random House, where my publisher is the highly respected and perceptive Shaye Areheart. Shaye and my superbly attentive and ever-vigilant editor, Julia Pastore, have offered warm support of me and my work. They have my great gratitude.
T
HIS BOOK IS DEDICATED TO
my sisters-in-law, Lissi Andersen and Hanne M
ller, who have been as devoted to me as they have been enthusiastic followers of my career. They and their husbands, S
ren Andersen and John M
ller, welcomed me with open arms from my first day in Denmark, where I am blessed to share my life with Lissi and Hanne’s brother, Ole Flemming Larsen. He watched Grace’s movies with me, he listened patiently to portions of the manuscript, and he provided pointed suggestions for its improvement. Ole’s artistic eye for detail and his amazing language proficiency are but a few of his many talents, and his commitment to me and to our life together means more than I can say. Grace, who always placed family first in her life, would have admired and loved Lissi, Hanne and Ole, as does …

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