Facts about Grace Kelly

Grace Kelly died at 52 years old
Best known as: The actress who became Princess of Monaco



Grace Kelly Biography

An icon of Hollywood elegance and beauty, Grace Kelly is best known for playing the gorgeous, reserved blonde in three Alfred Hitchcock films: Dial M for Murder (1954), Rear Window (1954, with Jimmy Stewart) and To Catch a Thief (1955, with Cary Grant).

Grace Kelly was born in Philadelphia; her father, John “Jack” Kelly, was an Olympic rowing champion and millionaire businessman. Grace Kelly was interested in acting from a young age, and after graduating from the private Stevens School in 1947, she enrolled in the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City, paying her bills by modeling.

Kelly’s special mix of reserved sophistication and American impatience, combined with her delicate blonde good looks, helped her rise rapidly in show business. (Vanity Fair later called it “a steep and impressive learning curve, straight to the top.”) By 1949 she was appearing in The Father on Broadway; by 1951 she had made it in Hollywood, being cast as Gary Cooper‘s wife in the iconic western High Noon (1952).

She starred with old-time superstar Clark Gable in the safari melodrama Mogambo (1953), then won a best actress Oscar in 1954 for The Country Girl (in which she was the long-suffering wife of an alcoholic actor played by Bing Crosby). She joined Crosby again, plus Frank Sinatra, for the musical romp High Society (1956).

While attending the Cannes film festival in 1955 she met Prince Rainier III of Monaco. The two fell in love and were married on April 18, 1956. Kelly abandoned her acting career to become Princess Grace; it had been only five years since her first film appearance. She spent the rest of her life fulfilling her royal duties as the matriarch of Monaco’s royal family.

Princess Grace was killed in a 1982 auto accident in Monaco, in which she apparently suffered a stroke and then crashed while driving with her daughter Stephanie.

Extra credit

Princess Grace and Prince Rainier had three children: Caroline (b. 1957), Albert (b. 1958) and Stephanie (b. 1965)… Among her grandchildren are Caroline’s well-known daughter Charlotte and son Andrea… Prince Rainier was deeply affected by the death of Princess Grace, and remained unmarried until his death in 2005… Grace Kelly was 5’6″ tall, according to a 2010 story in Vanity Fair.


Related Biographies

Something in Common with Grace Kelly