Thursday, December 11, 2008

Backstage Beauties: 1956?

This striking image taken backstage at the 28th Academy Awards says it all: Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly were, as the song goes: "lovely to look at." The two Oscar-winning beauties were presenters that evening: Grace for Best Actor (Ernest Borgnine won), and Audrey handed out the big prize, Best Picture for 1955, Marty. The two actresses are so charismatic that it took me awhile to realize that there were actually other people in the room with them. That's star power.

UPDATE: After doing some additional fact checking last night in Mason Wiley and Damien Bona's Inside Oscar, I have to conclude that the LIFE magazine photo archive got the photo's date wrong...possibly. Their archive dates this photo March 21, 1956 but it's most likely March 30, 1955 when both women were up for Best Actress. Audrey Hepburn for Sabrina and Grace Kelly for The Country Girl. It also makes sense that the two women would be backstage together, as both were presenters in 1955: Kelly presented the Documentary awards and Hepburn the Story & Screenplay award. Both were presenters the next year at the 1956 Oscars-- Kelly was on hand to give the Best Actor award--but Audrey Hepburn appeared only on film, reading off the Best Picture nominees from London, according to Inside Oscar. If any Audrey Hepburn experts out there can confirm her whereabouts during that period, please chime in, as Hollywood Dreamland prides itself on getting its facts straight!

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