The Story About a Hollywood Couple Who’ve Been Married for More Than 60 Years, and Their Love Continues to Grow Stronger With Time
In a time when divorce rates are skyrocketing, true love stories seem to be going extinct. But there are those rare cases where true, everlasting love still exists. And one such story is the one between Kirk and Anne Douglas. Their love is truly inspirational, as they’ve been together through thick and thin throughout their 65-year-long marriage, and even after such a long time, their romance still hasn’t faded away.
We at Bright Side were amazed by this 6-decade long love story, and we wanted to share it with you.
The love story between Kirk Douglas and Anne Buydens wasn’t always perfect. In fact, their first meeting was pretty awkward. When they first met, in 1953, Kirk was already a popular movie star, used to sweeping women off of their feet with his charm and charisma.
At the time, Buydens was working as a film publicist. She was living in Paris when a photographer friend introduced her to Kirk on the set of his movie Act of Love. Kirk liked Anne, and he asked her for a date at the most romantic, expensive restaurant in all of Paris, La Tour d’Argent. That’s when Anne rejected him and said: “No thanks, I think I’ll go home and make myself some scrambled eggs.”
Kirk was surprised that he had been rejected for a date, but he hired Anne anyway. With no romance in the picture, Kirk just stopped trying to impress her. Kirk wanted to show Anne that he was different than the typical Hollywood star, but his efforts to woo Anne were in vain, or so it seemed. Weeks later, Kirk and Anne attended a charity gala at the circus where Kirk helped scoop elephant feces while dressed in a tuxedo.
Anne said that it was that single act that “Got her” and showed her that Kirk didn’t care about his fancy tuxedo and that he was a down-to-earth celebrity. It was during that night that their relationship reached a whole new level. Later on, they worked long hours together and became closer as Anne opened up about her painful past of being born in Germany and moving to Belgium right before the Nazi occupation.
Although the couple started spending romantic weekends together, the situation was complicated because Kirk was engaged to his on-screen partner, Pier Angeli, and Anne was married to a Belgian friend during World War II, for safety reasons. Kirk made it very clear to Anne that he intended to marry Pier and even brought Anne along to help pick out an engagement ring for Pier.
It wasn’t until Anne told Kirk that she was moving to Paris that he realized he didn’t want to lose her and that his heart belonged to Anne, and decided to break his engagement with Pier. And from that moment on, the path to their relationship became clear.
After some time, Kirk and Anne’s love grew deeper. They eventually got married in 1954 in Las Vegas and had 2 children together, Peter and Eric. In an interview, Kirk stated that he had to go through a lot of trouble to show Anne he was serious about her and that she was the most difficult woman he had ever met.
Even though their love story is inspiring, it is far from perfect. Kirk and Anne had to overcome a lot of obstacles, like the tragic loss of their youngest son at the age of 46, Anne’s battle with breast cancer, and Kirk’s depression after suffering a stroke. Their marriage was also turbulent, and they had many reasons to not be together, but it’s their devotion to persist and overcome these obstacles that make their love so special.
They even renewed their vows for their 50th anniversary and had a big wedding with around 300 guests, the kind they always wanted to have because the couple rushed their first wedding in 1954 when Kirk was in the middle of shooting a movie. And Anne even surprised Kirk by accepting his religion, Judaism, right before the ceremony.
In the book that they published in 2017, Kirk and Anne: Letters of Love, Laughter, and a Lifetime in Hollywood, the couple shared a compilation of letters they had sent each other during their marriage. The letters themselves, as well as Kirk and Anne’s vivid descriptions about when they were apart, reveal an incredible insight about their true love that has stood the test of time.
In one of the letters, when Kirk was away from home shooting a movie, he said to Anne, “If I live to be 100, there will still be so many things unsaid.” And on the celebration of his 100th birthday on December 9, 2016, he said, “As I have now reached that milestone, I can attest that it is still true.”
In the end, what makes their story so perfect isn’t the fact that they didn’t have problems, because they did, but it’s the fact that they stood by one another despite all the obstacles they had. They vowed to always stay with each other and that’s the secret that helped their marriage withstand the test of time.
Kirk is now 102 and Anne is 100, and their love is still growing stronger than ever.
What impressed you the most about Kirk and Anne’s love story? Do you agree that their story is truly one-of-a-kind? Share your thoughts in the comments below.