Grace Kelly 'transformed' Monaco's image says expert
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Grace Kelly had a hugely successful career at the time of her marriage. She was one of the highest-paid actresses in Hollywood and had won an Oscar for her work. When she married Rainier III, she was forced to give all of that up to pursue a life of public service in the Royal Family.
Did Grace Kelly really love Prince Rainier?
While no one can know the truth of Grace’s feelings for her husband except the actress herself, there were some clues about the marriage having some difficulties.
Before leaving home for her wedding in Monaco, Grace said at a press conference: “I think just taking the step of marriage is enough to give a girl a bit of a twinge and certainly leaving home to do it, well, it’s a very moving thing.
“I don’t know how to explain it. Comme ci, comme ça.”
The French term she used here means ‘so so,’ which could explain how Grace was feeling about the event to follow.
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On April 18 and 19, 1956, she married Prince Rainier in what was called the ‘wedding of the century.’
Her son, Prince Albert, told People magazine how the actress was said to have felt about the epic two-day nuptials.
He said: “Mom said it was ‘overwhelming,’ — that ‘excited’ or the word ‘overjoyed’ wasn’t strong enough to express her feelings. My father said so too.”
“It was such an incredible affair and it’s left such a mark on people.
“What it has meant for people has been incredible. For us… it was our parents getting married.
“But what it’s meant for Monaco, for people around the world, and, how their story continues to fascinate people, that’s something unimaginable.”
The pressure on Rainier III to ‘save Monaco’ was huge, so much so it was reportedly suggested he wed a Hollywood actress in order to help turn the fortunes of the country around.
Marilyn Monroe was the first suggestion, according to author Liz Smith, who said of this: “Everybody was highly amused by the idea.
“For about a week, Marilyn fiddled with the offer, though she laughed and continued to refer to her possible husband as ‘Prince Reindeer!’”
This could suggest the marriage was one of convenience, and its aim was to help Monaco rather than for love.
Financial expert Gemma Godfrey, who contributed to a documentary about Grace Kelly’s fortune, has spoken out on this, and the pressure the couple were under.
Speaking exclusively to Express.co.uk, she said: “There were other things at play there in terms of trying to help rebuild the finances of Monaco…
“He maintained certain freedoms and she just wasn’t necessarily so happy towards the end, which is a shame.”
However, Gemma has given a different idea on how the pair came together, which is based on Grace’s own free will.
She continued: “It’s interesting because, from her [Grace’s] perspective, she was a free agent.
“She did choose to enter into this relationship, so there must have been love there. There must have been the foundations of a relationship…
“At that point, she was the highest-paid actress at the time so she had suitors.
“She didn’t choose them. But it didn’t turn out, I guess, as they’d hoped.”
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