Thanks to his appearances in films like Gilda and Blackboard Jungle, Glenn Ford was one of the biggest stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age. However, the star wasn’t quite as lucky in love as he was in the entertainment industry. Glenn hooked up with a staggering variety of Hollywood starlets over the course of his lifetime, though he only had one son. Glenn Ford’s only son is named Peter, and it’s Peter who keeps his father’s legacy alive. Join Facts Verse as Glenn Ford’s son reveals his intimate details.
Glenn Ford’s Early Life
Glenn Ford was born on May 1, 1916, in Quebec, Canada. The future star’s father was a successful railroad executive. When Glenn was still young, his family moved out to California. It was here that the boy first started developing a taste for the Hollywood lifestyle. During his high-school years, Glenn started appearing in plays. After he graduated, the actor believed that his future was in the world of theater. However, instead of aspiring to be the actor that he would eventually become, he aspired to be a stage director.
Though it was initially Glenn Ford’s dream to becoming a stage director, he changed his tune once he realized how much more money he might be able to make if he was an actor. It was at this point when Glenn officially decided that he wanted to start acting professionally. The future star’s wealthy father was supportive, but also realistic. Glenn’s father encouraged the young man to pursue his dreams of becoming a Hollywood star, but he also made sure that he knew some trades just in case his dream never came to fruition. At the behest of his father, Glenn became proficient in numerous trades before becoming a Hollywood actor.
Glenn Ford’s father was certainly being realistic when it came to pushing his son to learn a trade outside of the entertainment industry. However, Glenn thankfully didn’t end up needing to use any of the hard-laboring skills that he had developed! Fairly early on in his acting career, Glenn received a big break when an executive spotted him by the name of Harry Cohn. At the time, Harry was the studio head of Columbia Pictures. Up until that point, Columbia Pictures had mostly made movies with actors on loan. It was tradition in Hollywood at the time for actors and actresses to be signed to long-term contracts. Instead of signing their own actors, Columbia Pictures simply loaned performers out from other studios that already had them under contract.
Columbia Pictures Signed Glenn Early On
By the time Glenn Ford came around, Harry Cohn was looking to develop his own roster of contract players for Columbia Pictures. Given that Glenn was essentially an unknown at the time, he proved the perfect get. Harry was able to sign Glenn for a relatively small amount of money, and then he and his studio went about trying to turn the actor into a star. Around the same time, Harry Cohn also signed another actor. The other actor that Harry signed was William Holden. Harry only needed one male star, but he believed that either Glenn or Harry would end up messing up.
Harry Cohn was playing it safe by signing both Glenn Ford and William Holden. He believed that the two stars would become entangled in a rivalry, and that one of them would come out on top. Instead, Glenn and William ended up becoming good friends! Both actors proved successful signs for Columbia Pictures, and it now appeared as if Harry Cohn had two big stars on his hands. Glenn Ford’s first big role came via the 1939 film Heaven with a Barbed Wire Fence.
Glenn Ford would eventually become a big star, but he had a fairly hard time during the filming of Heaven with a Barbed Wire Fence. A man named Ricardo Cortez directed the film. Ricardo didn’t much like Glenn, and he let this fact be known during the picture’s filming. Ricardo would often chastise Glenn in front of the rest of the cast and crew, proclaiming that he was a terrible actor and that he regretted hiring him.
Glenn Was a Fighter and a Womanizer
Not much came of Heaven with a Barbed Wire Fence of Glenn Ford’s performance in it. Many years later, Glenn ran into the director and a restaurant. By this time, Glenn was a much more notable celebrity than Ricardo Cortez. However, he hadn’t let go of the grudge. Glenn nearly beat Ricardo up on this chance encounter. Thankfully, the lack of Heave with a Barbed Wire Fence’s success didn’t cause Columbia Pictures to give up on Glenn. A year later, the star was cast in the 1940 film The Lady in Question. In the film, Glenn got to appear alongside Rita Hayworth for the very first time.
As Glenn Ford’s profile was rising in Hollywood, so was his reputation for being a womanizer. Not only was Glenn rumored to have started up an extramarital affair with Rita Hayworth during the filming of The Lady in Question, but he was also rumored to have become romantically involved with another one of the film’s female star. That second star was Evelyn Keys. Glenn wasn’t yet married at the time that he appeared in the film, but Rita Hayworth was. At the time, Rita was married to first husband Edward C. Judson.
In 1941, Glenn Ford was given the chance to turn more heads than ever before via his performance in the film So Ends Our Night. The film is notable for being the first American feature with an anti-Nazi slant. The film came out during World War II, but predated America’s involvement. The depiction of Nazis as villains actually caused some controversy, though the film was generally successful. Critics praised Glenn’s and then-president of the United States Franklin Roosevelt loved the film so much that he ordered to have a private screening of the movie for his birthday.
Glenn Enlisted in the Marines During World War II
After America officially became involved in World War II, Glenn helped with the war effort by using his celebrity to sell war bonds. However, the actor eventually decided that selling war bonds wasn’t enough. It was during the filming of the 1943 film Destroyer that Glenn decided that he wanted to get more hands-on when it came to America’s war effort. The actor enlisted in the United States Marine Corps Reserve, which was a movie that surprised everyone.
Harry Cohn was one of the many people surprised by Glenn Ford enlisting in the United States Marine Corps Reserve. However, there was little that he could do to keep his star from travelling overseas. Harry managed to convince the United States Marine Corps Reserve to allow Glenn to finish the filming of the aforementioned Destroyer, but that was about it. After filming of the picture was over, Glenn was officially on his way to serving in World War II. Around this same time, Glenn met and married his first wife.
Glenn Ford’s first wife was a woman by the name of Eleanor Powell, who was actually a notable actress around the time. Eleanor decided to give up her career after marrying Glenn, believing that it was a wife’s duty to support her husband. Eleanor became pregnant just as Glenn was heading off to war. However, Glenn would end up becoming ill just before heading into combat. Glenn was found to have been suffering from ulcers, which necessitated five months of recovery. Because of this, Glenn never saw combat.
Glenn Was Welcomed Home with Open Arms
After returning home from World War II, Glenn Ford resumed his Hollywood career. The actor believed that he was going to have a hard time getting back into the spotlight after being away for so long. Despite this, he ended up finding more fame after the war than before it. In 1946, Glenn appeared alongside Rita Hayworth again in the film Gilda. Though the groundbreaking noir feature wasn’t a major commercial success, it was a huge hit with the critics. The critics were particularly fond of Glenn’s performance, and it seemed as if the actor was back on top in the Hollywood sphere.
Gilda proved that Glenn had a future in Hollywood after returning from World War II, but it also proved that he had a penchant for cheating on his wife. Glenn reignited his romance with Rita Hayworth while filming the picture. It became obvious to the tabloids that Glenn wasn’t being faithful to his wife. Another woman that Glenn would attempt to cheat on his wife with was Geraldine Brooks. Glenn starred alongside Geraldine in the film The Green Glove. When Geraldine refused his advances, Glenn nearly abandoned his wife and child to join the French Foreign Legion. Unsurprisingly, Glenn and his first wife ended up divorcing. Glenn and Eleanor divorced in 1959.
After divorcing from his first wife, Glenn Ford continued on with his Hollywood career and his high-profile affairs. He remarried three times, though he hooked up with many, many more women that just his three wives. Some of the other notable starlets that Glenn was romantically involved with at some point include Gloria Grahame and Barbara Stanwyck. Eleanor ended up getting custody of her and Glenn’s only son, who was named Peter. For many years, Glenn and Peter were estranged. Glenn kept his distance from his son and his ex-wife, with his contact being limited essentially to his modest alimony payments.
Glenn Tasked His Son with Carrying On His Life Story
In 1978, Glenn received his last big role via Superman: The Movie. In the movie, he played the titular superhero’s adopted Earth father. By the end of his life, Glenn had repaired his relationship with his only son. In fact, it was Peter who Glenn revealed all of his dark secrets to just before his death. Following his father’s death, Peter released Glenn Ford: A Life in 2011. Today, Glenn still loves reminiscing about his father’s many intimate details.
Glenn Ford was estranged from his only son for many years, but he ended up entrusting his son with his life story shortly before his death. Now it’s time to hear from you: did you know that Glenn Ford served in World War II, and that he had an affair with Rita Hayworth? Comment down below!