Legendary actress Katharine Hepburn walked the path of legends throughout her career, making her a celebrated woman in Hollywood history.
Snagging an Oscar win is no small feat, and only a record few people have done so more than once in the course of their career.
One woman stands out among these few, holding the record for the most Academy Awards earned by an entertainer.
While the Meryl Streeps and Frances McDormands of our time have come close to scoring the record, with three Oscars each, “Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner” star Katharine Hepburn remains at the top of the scales, with four Academy Award wins throughout her career.
Who’s Katharine Hepburn?
Katharine Hepburn was an award-winning actress who broke barriers in the entertainment world from the onset of her career which spanned six decades.
The Connecticut-born icon came into the world on May 12, 1907, growing up to develop an interest in the arts. With her admirable beauty, good-spirited nature, and strength, the star easily got the chance to pursue her dreams, venturing into the entertainment industry in the thirties.
She spent the next six decades making waves in the industry, starring in such movies as “Guess who’s Coming To Dinner,” “The African Queen,” “On Golden Pond,” “A Bill Of Divorcement,” “Morning Glory,” and “Little Women,” among others.
Her acting prowess and numerous movie appearances eventually earned the legend her four Academy Awards. The awards made her the record-holder for the most Oscar wins.
She held the record until her death on June 29, 2003, at her home in Connecticut. Years later, no one has succeeded in succeeding her as the reigning title holder dead or alive.
Let’s look back at every time this talented Hollywood diva and great woman snagged an Oscar Award throughout her career.
1. “Morning Glory”
Katharine Hepburn won her first Academy Award in 1933, for her performance in the drama, “Morning Glory,” at twenty-six.
The movie portrayed her as a small-town girl Eva Lovelace, who made her way to the city equipped only with her beauty and a burning dream to become a Broadway star.
While New York seemed too difficult to navigate as an upcoming star, she gradually made her way to the top, having a slew of romantic escapades while at it.
The movie introduced audiences to a side of Hepburn that portrayed her as forthright and eccentric. That perception of the movie legend ended up becoming the general image the world had of her throughout her career.
2. “Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner”
Hepburn’s second Oscar came with her role as mom Christina Drayton in 1967s “Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner.” She played a receptive woman whose liberalism was tested after her daughter, Joey Drayton returned home to introduce her African-American boyfriend to the family.
Viewers watched Hepburn’s character struggle with the reality of losing her daughter to marriage and accepting a black-skinned son-in-law.
In her usual prolific fashion, the actress depicted every rioting feeling that left Christina torn, so much that millions of viewers resonated with every breath she took.
Undoubtedly, such a beautiful performance in the 1967 drama “Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner,” was deserving of an Oscar win. However many argue that Sidney Poitier was more deserving of the honors for his role as Joey Drayton’s love interest.
3. “The Lion In Winter”
Just One year after landing her second Oscar win, Katharine Hepburn struck again, this time, taking home the award for Best Actress for her role as Eleanor of Aquitaine in the 1968 film, “The Lion In winter.”
The drama represents one of only a few times the legend agreed to portray an aristocrat in a movie. Unsurprisingly, the eccentric actress rendered the role of the estranged wife of Henry II, recently released from prison.
With a fierceness that only a few could match, she stormed the 12th-century court in Northern France seeking justice and stirring a political uproar. Definitely an Oscar-worthy performance.
4. “On Golden Pond”
At 74, when it seemed the legendary entertainer was nearing retirement, Katharine Hepburn proved herself a force to reckon with in the movie scenes.
She played Ethel, a tactful and dignified wife who spent the decades of her life dealing with her old grumpy and forgetful husband in the 1981 movie, “On Golden Pond.”
The film followed the couple as they set out to spend another summer on the shore of Golden Pond, New England.
Their annual summer vacation marked the only time the pair could connect with their only daughter and Norman’s moods didn’t make things any easier.
Why Katharine Hepburn Never Attended The Oscars
Despite winning the Academy Award for Best Actress a record four times in her career, Katharine Hepburn notably never attended an Oscars event to receive them in her lifetime.
Asked why she never attended the ceremony to receive her coveted award, the star revealed prizes meant nothing to her. Going further she explained that she considered her work as the only prize she needed.
Keeping her focus on her cherished work for 66 years, Katharine Hepburn went on to earn other awards and recognitions.
Today, the late actress, inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame in 1979, has two British Academy Film Awards. She also has One Emmy Award, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Screen Actors’ Guild.
Additionally, her impressive collection includes a People’s Choice Award, A Laurel, The American Comedy Award, and a handful of nominations. But her Oscar wins stand out, carving her name among legends.