Cary Grant is known for being one of the most iconic actors from the golden age of Hollywood. That’s why it has come as a surprise to many of his fans that Grant’s biographer is claiming that he actually struggled with being in Hollywood for decades, and only found peace once he left the industry in his final years.
“It was blissful,” Grant biographer Scott Eyman told Fox News. “He was 62 when he made his final film…He got a lot of offers, but he turned them all down. He had all the money he needed.”
“He relaxed for the first time, probably in his entire life. He didn’t have to worry about the terrible business of being Cary Grant,” added Eymnan, who wrote the book “Cary Grant: A Brilliant Disguise.”
The book details how Grant went from being part of a broken English family to becoming one of the most A-list stars in Hollywood. Despite all of his success in the movie industry, however, it did not bring him happiness. Grant spent years working on the stage before making his first Hollywood movie in 1932 at the age of 28.
“He’s blazingly handsome, but he doesn’t seem to know what to do with himself,” Eyman explained. “You can tell he’s awkward. It wouldn’t be until the late ‘30s that he settles into this role of Cary Grant, one that he went on to play for about 25 years.”
“Mae West once quipped after seeing him for the first time, ‘If he can talk, I’ll take him,’” the biographer continued. “He could talk very well and she made two films with him, which certainly upped his profile.”
Eyman also talked about the issues Grant had with women throughout his life, pointing out that he was married five times.
“Out of his five wives, three were actresses and they were all train wrecks,” said the author. “The last thing he really needed was an actress for a wife.”
Eyman went on to say that while he is aware of the rumors that Grant was gay, he doesn’t buy them.
“I don’t think a gay man gets married five times,” said Eyman. “As I wrote in the book, depending upon which team you’re rooting for, there’s evidence that he could have been gay, straight or bi… The truth is, Cary Grant didn’t play for any team, but his own… [And] I don’t think it’s the most interesting thing about him. I think it’s way down the list, considering how his life could be considered a triumph over terrible, terrible anxieties.”
Grant died in 1986 from a stroke at the age of 82, and Eyman said his years before that were the happiest of his life.
“He could simply be who he was,” the biographer explained. “It was a beautiful metamorphosis. He took time with people in a way that he never did before at the height of his career. He took time with people. He lingered with people. He tried to help people as much as possible. He was more like himself after he quit being an actor. Those years were really blissful.”