"Roman Holiday" Is Released
Roman Holiday is a 1953 romantic comedy.
The film introduced American audiences to Belgian-born actress Audrey Hepburn, who won the Academy Award for Best Actress. Gregory Peck and Eddie Albert co-starred. The movie was directed and produced by William Wyler. It was written by John Dighton and author Dalton Trumbo. As Trumbo was on the Hollywood blacklist, he was not credited; instead, Ian McLellan Hunter fronted for him. Trumbo's name was finally digitally added to the film's credits when it was released on DVD in 2003.
In the 1970s, both Peck and Hepburn were approached with the idea of a sequel, but the project never came to fruition. The film was remade for television in 1987 with Tom Conti and Catherine Oxenberg, who herself came from a European royal family.
Audrey Hepburn became a star with this film, in which she played Princess Anne, weary of protocol and anxious to have some fun before she is mummified by "affairs of state." On a diplomatic visit to Rome, Anne escapes her royal retainers and scampers incognito through the Eternal City. She happens to meet American journalist Joe Bradley (Gregory Peck), who, recognizing a hot news story, pretends that he doesn't recognize her and offers to give her a guided tour of Rome. Naturally, Joe hopes to get an exclusive interview, while his photographer pal Irving (Eddie Albert) attempts to sneak a photo. And just as naturally, Joe falls in love with her. Filmed on location in Rome, Roman Holiday garnered an Academy Award for the 24-year-old Hepburn; another Oscar went to the screenplay, credited to Ian McLellan Hunter and John Dighton but actually co-written by the blacklisted Dalton Trumbo. The 1987 TV movie remake with Catherine Oxenberg is best forgotten. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide