We know Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward as one of the first power couples in showbiz. They’re even thought of as “Hollywood’s golden couple”. Their work in front of and behind the camera has surprised us all, but their love story is truly something else. Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward were married for fifty years and, in an industry where love is often fleeting, their long marriage teaches us that true love can last forever.
We wants to share the story of this great couple, which inspires us to find a love worthy of being taken to the big screen.
Paul was born in 1925 and Joanne in 1930. Their story began when Woodward’s agent introduced him to another young actor, then unknown, named Paul Newman. After a while, they were working together as understudies for the 1953 play Picnic, which was Newman’s debut on Broadway.
Although they hit it off very well from the start, Newman was married to Jackie White back then, so the relationship between the two could be nothing more than a simple friendship.
However, their careers were only taking off: he would soon appear in Somebody Up There Likes Me (1956) and she landed a starring role in The Three Faces of Eve (1957).
A few years after they met, Paul and Joanne met again in 1957, during the shooting of The Long, Hot Summer (1958), in which they both stared. The chemistry between the actors was hard to deny, both in front of and behind the cameras. In fact, this led Newman to divorce his first wife in order to marry Woodward. The wedding took place in late January 1958 in Las Vegas and, after a few days in New York, they honeymooned in England.
The couple’s happiness and closeness did not end after they celebrated their wedding. They had three daughters and, in the following years, kept working on new movies, even starring in other films together, such as Paris Blues (1961) and Mr. & Mrs. Bridge (1990). Newman also explored a new passion, directing, and even cast his wife in Rachel, Rachel (1968). Her performance earned her a second Academy Award nomination.
The chemistry was just as clear in other aspects of their lives. Thanks to his wife’s support, Paul, along with a friend, created a foundation in 2005 that supports educational and charitable organizations. Newman also became a successful race car driver.
In an interview, Joanne Woodward said that, to her, Newman may have been very handsome and sexy, but all those things were not as important. In the end, “if someone makes you laugh, that’s where true love is found; and he really always made me laugh.”
On the other hand, Paul deeply admired his wife and all the things she was capable of doing, so he was constantly trying to get the world to see all the good in her. And she reciprocated by supporting him in all the projects he came up with.
According to Closer Magazine, Woodward is battling Alzheimer’s. USA Today reports that Joanne was diagnosed with the disease in 2007, just days before Paul Newman was diagnosed with terminal cancer.
Joanne once again found herself in the spotlight when Ethan Hawke’s intimate six-part docuseries about Woodward and Newman premiered in 2022.
Hopefully, Joanne could enjoy it.
”That’s why the family wanted me to do it now,” Hawke said in 2020 and continued:
”They wanted it to come out while she’s still alive and can see this, to support her”.
According to Closer, Joanne Woodward still lives in the Westport home in Connecticut, where her husband died in 2008 at age 83.