#Movies & TV
The Most Dramatic Real-Life Romances to be Recreated for Film
Many biopics, especially those about celebrities, reveal shocking or even tragic details of famous relationships, giving us a new perspective of our favorite stars. From The Other Boleyn Girl to What's Love Got to Do with It?, here are the most infamous celebrity couples on film.
Walk the Line
The 2005 Johnny Cash biopic Walk the Line, starring Joaquin Phoenix, was packed with romantic drama from Cash’s first marriage as well as his passionate on-again-off-again relationship with his second wife, singer/songwriter June Carter Cash (Reese Witherspoon).
The Other Boleyn Girl
The turbulent relationship between Henry VIII and his ambitious second wife, Anne Boleyn, depicted in this 2008 historical drama, led to major policy changes affecting an entire nation. Their marriage also produced Elizabeth I, but ended tragically with Anne’s execution.
Great Balls of Fire
Early rock singer/musician Jerry Lee Lewis was one of the most colorful entertainers of the 1950s but watching his 1989 biopic Great Balls of Fire, it’s hard to get past the fact that he married his 13-year-old cousin.
Coal Miner’s Daughter
Another biopic depicting a teenage marriage is Coal Miner’s Daughter, chronicling Loretta Lynn’s rise from poverty to First Lady of Country Music. Her marriage to Doo inspired songs like You Ain’t Woman Enough (To Take My Man).
A romantic relationship between two poets is bound to have some drama, like the marriage of the ill-fated Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes as shown in the 2003 drama Sylvia, starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Daniel Craig.
Liz & Dick
The campy 2012 film Liz & Dick follows the fiery romance of superstars Elizabeth Taylor (Lindsay Lohan) and Richard Burton (Grant Bowler), played out in the media for many years, which included scandal, film collaborations and two marriages.
Lady Sings the Blues
As we see in this 1972 biopic, iconic jazz singer Billie Holiday (Diana Ross) had a troubled life, marked by drug abuse, and rape, which was further complicated by her volatile relationship with boyfriend/manager Louis McKay (Billy Dee Williams).
One of the most shocking and tragic relationship focused biopics is the 1983 film Star 80 about Playboy’s enormously popular 1980 Playmate of the Year, Dorothy Stratten (Mariel Hemingway), who was killed by her obsessive husband-turned-manager Paul Snider (Eric Roberts).
Elvis and Me
Based on the memoir of Priscilla Beaulieu Presley, the 1988 movie Elvis and Me follows Priscilla (Susan Walters), an impressionable young Elvis fan thrust into the spotlight and a sordid lifestyle when she becomes his bride.
Why Do Fools Fall in Love?
Three very different women, claiming to be the widow of the charismatic doo-wop singer/songwriter Frankie Lymon fight over his estate in this 1998 film starring Halle Berry, Vivica A. Fox, Lela Rochon and Larenz Tate.
The Girl on the Red Velvet Swing
This 1955 melodrama starring Joan Collins tells the story of a love triangle between famed architect Stanford White, teenage model Evelyn Nesbit, and Nesbit’s insanely jealous millionaire husband Harry K. Thaw, who murdered White on the roof of Madison Square Garden.
Your Cheatin’ Heart
George Hamilton portrayed one of his most acclaimed film roles, country music legend Hank Williams, in this 1964 biopic, which explores the alcohol-addicted Williams’ rise to fame with the help of wife, singer Audrey Williams, and their failed marriage.
The 1991 film The Doors introduced a new generation to the music of this influential 1960s band and their enigmatic lead singer Jim Morrison (Val Kilmer). Memorably depicted was his troubled relationship with girlfriend Pamela Courson (Meg Ryan).
Of the many films about the Queen of the Nile, this 1963 epic, recreating her relationships with Julius Caesar and Mark Antony, is the most famous, partly because it’s headlined by another pair of star-crossed lovers, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton.
Deep Throat star Linda Lovelace, (Amanda Seyfried), is exploited by the porn industry and her allegedly abusive husband Chuck (Peter Sarsgaard) in this 2013 biopic, before eventually taking control of her own life.
What’s Love Got to Do with It?
The volatile relationship between Tina Turner (Angela Bassett) and her abusive husband/music collaborator Ike Turner (Laurence Fishburne) takes center stage in this compelling 1993 adaptation of the memoir I Tina, inspiring for its survivor theme.
Bonnie and Clyde
Not exactly celebrities, Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow were the most infamous bank robbers of all time. This 1967 biopic starring Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway depicts a passionate romance in the midst of their shocking crime spree.
Poor Little Rich Girl: The Barbara Hutton Story
The glamorous life of socialite heiress Barbara Hutton as depicted in this 1987 biopic starring Farrah Fawcett, was also filled with drama, especially when it came to love. Cary Grant was among her seven high-profile husbands.
Behind the Candelabra
Michael Douglas was an unlikely choice to play flamboyant entertainer Liberace, but his performance won over critics in this 2013 movie, which focused on his tempestuous relationship with teenage lover Scott Thorson, played by Matt Damon.
The 1991 historical drama Bugsy stars Warren Beatty as notorious gangster Bugsy Siegel, credited with making Las Vegas an entertainment destination. A major portion of the film explores the tumultuous romance between Siegel and actress Virginia Hill (Annette Bening).