One of the most photographed women in the world, Audrey Hepburn remains one of the most celebrated stars in the world, loved just as much for her elegant style and elfin beauty as she is for her mesmerizing appearances on the silver screen. It may come as a surprise to learn then, that the much-loved actress was secretly mystified by her stardom.
“She was quite amazed by the fact that she was seen as such a beauty icon and actress,” her son, Lucca Dotti, told the Daily Mail in a candid interview. “She was very shy about that part of her appreciation.”
In a nationwide poll that came out last month, Hepburn was named the most stylish Brit of all time, beating off stiff competition from the likes of Princess Diana, Kate Middleton and Twiggy for the top spot, but according to Dotti, his mother was not always seen as the style and beauty icon she is today.
“Some articles depicted her as not so perfect,” he revealed. “She had big feat, a big nose, and small breasts. She wasn’t what the average beautiful girl was perceived as, especially by men.”
It’s hard to imagine a time where Hepburn wasn’t championed in the way she is now. Many of the wardrobe staples we all swear by all hark back to her – think ballet flats, teamed with cropped trousers and Breton tops and, of course, the LBD too.
Born in Belgium in 1929, she first came to the world’s attention with a breakout role in Roman Holiday, for which she won the 1954 Best Actress Oscar. It was while filming Sabrina that she was introduced to Hubert de Givenchy who went on to design the actresses personal ensembles and the infamous little black dress she wore in her career defining role in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
In 2006, the dress was sold at a Christie’s auction for a whopping £476,200, almost seven times its £70,000 pre-sale estimate. It was the highest price ever paid for a dress from a film until it was pushed from the hot spot in 2011 when someone paid an eye-watering $4.6 million for the white dress Marilyn Monroe wore in The Seven Year Itch.
For all the Hepburn fans out there, we come baring good news because July will see the opening of a brand new exhibition dedicated to the star. Running at the National Portrait Gallery in London until October, you can look forward to see intimate never-before-seen images of the actress, taken by some of the world’s leading photographers like Richard Avedon and Norman Parkinson.