She is considered one of the most beautiful women ever by many people… but not everyone.
Audrey Hepburn herself hated her nose, her feet and even her waistline, her son has revealed on what would have been the screen icon’s 90th birthday.
“She knew people saw her that way but she didn’t see herself as beautiful at all,” Luca Dotti told The Lady. “She was actually quite self-conscious about her defects – her nose, her feet, too skinny, not enough this or that.”
“Of course, I always saw her as my mother; you don’t see her as beautiful or ugly.”
Luca said his mom had no qualms about growing old however, and knew how to do it gracefully.
“The one thing she really linked to beauty was self-respect when getting old. She knew that when you’re older you couldn’t go around with younger hairstyles any more,” he said. “And tricks like tying the hair back would make the wrinkles a little bit better.”
He added: “She was very happy about being old. She perceived her life as seasons: I have been young, I’ve been a mother, and now I am old.”
Sadly the six-time Oscar nominee and two-time winner didn’t get to grow very old at all; she died in January 1993, aged 63.
“Until her death, my brother and I never really sensed this iconic image she had. She would rather talk to us about how we were doing at school, our girlfriends, our problems, our lives, so we just saw her as our mother,” Luca continued.
“When she died, it was like a double bomb. The sadness we felt, wanting to be private. But at the same time she was on the cover of magazines. It was a shock for us.”
“It was very difficult because grief is such an internal, personal thing, but everyone wanted to know about her. I had to come to peace with that and realise I couldn’t keep her separate. She was my mother but also an icon. I had to confront the fact that she was a public figure.”
Luca tries to keep his mother’s memory alive in his three sons as their grandmother, and not just the world icon she was.
“My son had a postcard of Breakfast At Tiffany’s and I said ‘Why? This is your grandmother, but not your real grandmother.’ I want to separate his grandmother from the glamorous vision.”
And while her name will always be connected to high fashion, Luca confirmed that yes — his mom did have her chill out clothes too.
“A mother is a mother so I never really looked at her that way. At home she would be very happy in jeans and a top, which is surprising because people would say that she was so stylish – at the time I always thought that was weird.
“Givenchy, Valentino… those people were friends of my mother but they were never presented as a big thing. When Givenchy came, he was a friend of Mum’s so we just behaved and tried to eat well and not make any mess.”