Peter Turner Opens Up About A Tragic Love Affair With Hollywood Star, Gloria Grahame
In 1978, she was a fading Hollywood star at 54 years old, enjoying the remnants of her fame and struggling to find acting jobs. He was a starting 26-year-old actor from Liverpool. Despite the nearly 30 years of age difference, Gloria Grahame, the “tart with a heart” of It’s a Wonderful Life and Oklahoma!, and Peter Turner fell in love, but their romance ended with the actress’ death.
Gloria Grahame passed away from cancer when she was 57. Turner told that they met during a British stage production in 1978.
It was the most wonderful relationship. It changed my life enormously and resonates with me even now.
Before meeting Peter, Gloria had faced a lot of hardships with love. She already had four failed marriages, including to director Nicholas Ray and his son Tony Ray.
The Hollywood Reporter revealed the scandalous story on how Nicholas had supposedly caught Grahame in bed with his 13-year-old son, Tony, from his first marriage. It was reported that this caused the marriage to end in 1952. The magazine also added that the actress married Tony nine years later and they had two children. They divorced in 1974.
In her final years, Gloria focused on raising her children away from Hollywood and working focusing on television and British theater.
Turner reflected on the scandal:
It affected her big time, and I don’t think it’s anything she ever got over. But she was brave, courageous, and continued trying to work as an actress… The idea of love meant a lot to her. She wrote me a lovely letter that said, ‘In this life, when we die, it’s only loving that’s important.’
According to Closer Weekly, Graham and Turner had been together for more than three years. And when the actress was diagnosed with terminal breast cancer, she stayed with Turner in Liverpool. It was previously reported that she passed away at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Manhattan after arriving aboard a commercial flight from London.
Their love story, which the British writer and director depicted in his memoir, “Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool,” has been turned into a film of the same title. It stars Oscar-nominated actress Annette Bening as Grahame.
Turner said that Grahame would be honored and proud of the film because it could help the audience to understand who she really is.