Katharine Hepburn performances

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Katharine Hepburn, circa 1941

Katharine Hepburn (May 12, 1907 – June 29, 2003) was a major American actress of the 20th century who appeared in 44 feature films, eight television films and 33 plays for over 66 years. Hepburn began her career in theatre in the late 1920s, and later appeared on the stage in every decade up until the 1980s. Productions Hepburn played in ranged from Shakespeare, to Philip Barry comedies, work by George Bernard Shaw, and a musical. Hepburn made her film debut in A Bill of Divorcement in 1932. Over the next six decades, she appeared in a range of genres, including screwball comedies, period dramas, and adaptations of works by notable playwrights Tennessee Williams, Eugene O'Neill, and Edward Albee. Her final appearance in a theatrically released film was a supporting role in Love Affair in 1994. Hepburn first appeared in a television film in 1973, and later continued to appear in the medium until she gave the final performance of her career in One Christmas in 1994. Hepburn also presented two documentaries for television, and narrated two short documentaries.


Feature films[edit]

Year Title Role Notes Director
1932 A Bill of Divorcement Sidney Fairfield Drama George Cukor
1933 Christopher Strong Lady Cynthia Darrington Drama Dorothy Arzner
1933 Morning Glory Eva Lovelace Drama Lowell Sherman
1933 Little Women Josephine "Jo" March Period drama George Cukor
1934 Spitfire Trigger Hicks Drama John Cromwell
1934 The Little Minister Babbie Period drama Richard Wallace
1935 Break of Hearts Constance Dane Romantic drama Philip Moeller
1935 Alice Adams Alice Adams Drama George Stevens
1935 Sylvia Scarlett Sylvia Scarlett Comedy George Cukor
1936 Mary of Scotland Mary Stuart Period drama John Ford
1936 A Woman Rebels Pamela Thislewaite Period drama Mark Sandrich
1937 Quality Street Phoebe Throssel Period comedy George Stevens
1937 Stage Door Terry Randall Comedy drama Gregory La Cava
1938 Bringing Up Baby Susan Vance Comedy Howard Hawks
1938 Holiday Linda Seton Comedy George Cukor
1940 The Philadelphia Story Tracy Lord Comedy George Cukor
1942 Woman of the Year Tess Harding Romantic comedy George Stevens
1942 Keeper of the Flame Christine Forrest Mystery George Cukor
1943 Stage Door Canteen Katharine Hepburn Musical Frank Borzage
1944 Dragon Seed Jade Drama Jack Conway
1945 Without Love Jamie Rowan Comedy Harold S. Bucquet
1946 Undercurrent Ann Hamilton Film noir Vincente Minnelli
1947 The Sea of Grass Lutie Cameron Western drama Elia Kazan
1947 Song of Love Clara Wieck Schumann Period drama Clarence Brown
1948 State of the Union Mary Matthews Drama Frank Capra
1949 Adam's Rib Amanda Bonner Comedy George Cukor
1951 The African Queen Rose Sayer Adventure John Huston
1952 Pat and Mike Patricia "Pat" Pemberton Comedy George Cukor
1955 Summertime Jane Hudson Romance David Lean
1956 The Rainmaker Lizzie Curry Drama Joseph Anthony
1956 The Iron Petticoat Vinka Kovelenko Comedy Ralph Thomas
1957 Desk Set Bunny Watson Comedy Walter Lang
1959 Suddenly, Last Summer Violet Venable Drama Joseph L. Mankiewicz
1962 Long Day's Journey into Night Mary Tyrone Period drama Sidney Lumet
1967 Guess Who's Coming to Dinner Christina Drayton Comedy drama Stanley Kramer
1968 The Lion in Winter Eleanor of Aquitaine Period drama Anthony Harvey
1969 The Madwoman of Chaillot Aurelia, The Madwoman of Chaillot Comedy drama Bryan Forbes
1971 The Trojan Women Hecuba Period drama Michael Cacoyannis
1973 A Delicate Balance Agnes Drama Tony Richardson
1975 Rooster Cogburn Eula Goodnight Western Stuart Millar
1978 Olly Olly Oxen Free Miss Pudd Adventure Richard A. Colla
1981 On Golden Pond Ethel Thayer Drama Mark Rydell
1985 Grace Quigley Grace Quigley Comedy Anthony Harvey
1994 Love Affair Ginny Romantic drama Glenn Gordon Caron

Television films[edit]

Year Title Role Notes Director
1973 The Glass Menagerie Amanda Wingfield Drama Anthony Harvey
1975 Love Among the Ruins Jessica Medlicott Period comedy George Cukor
1979 The Corn Is Green Lily Moffat Period drama George Cukor
1986 Mrs. Delafield Wants to Marry Margaret Delafield Romantic comedy George Schaefer
1988 Laura Lansing Slept Here Laura Lansing Comedy George Schaefer
1992 The Man Upstairs Victoria Brown Comedy drama George Schaefer
1994 This Can't Be Love Marion Bennett Romantic comedy Anthony Harvey
1994 One Christmas Cornelia Beaumont Drama Tony Bill

Short subjects[edit]

Year Title Role Notes Director
1941 Women in Defense Narrator Documentary
1946 American Creed Narrator Documentary Robert Stevenson

Box Office Ranking[edit]

  • 1934 - 11th
  • 1935 - 23rd
  • 1968 - 18th
  • 1969 - 9th
  • 1970 - 20th
  • 1982 - 12th


Hepburn as Rosalind in the Theatre Guild production of As You Like It (1950)
Hepburn as Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing, on tour with the American Shakespeare Theatre, 1958
Year Play Role Theatre Notes
1928 The Czarina A Lady-in-Waiting Baltimore, Maryland
1928 The Cradle Snatchers A flapper Baltimore
1928 The Big Pond Barbara New York City, New York Released after one performance
1928 These Days Veronica Sims Cort Theatre, New York City
1928 Holiday Linda Seton Plymouth Theatre, New York City Understudy
1930 A Month in the Country Grazia Guild Theatre, New York City Understudy
1930 A Romantic Young Lady Katia; Viera Alexandrovna The Berkshire Playhouse, Stockbridge
1930 The Admirable Crichton The Berkshire Playhouse, Stockbridge
1930 Art and Mrs. Bottle Judy Bottle Maxine Elliott Theatre, New York City
1931 Just Married Ivoryton
1931 It's a Wise Child Ivoryton
1931 Alias the Deacon Ivoryton
1931 The Cat and the Canary Ivoryton
1931 Let Us Be Gay Ivoryton
1931 The Man Who Came Back Ivoryton
1932 The Warror's Husband Antiope Morosco Theatre, New York City March - May 1932
1932 The Bride the Sun Shines On Ossining, New York
1934 The Lake Stella Surrege Martin Beck Theatre, New York City
1936–1937 Jane Eyre Jane Eyre On tour
1939–1941 The Philadelphia Story Tracy Lord Schubert Theatre, New York City Played New York March 1939 - March 1940;
Toured Washington, D. C., and Chicago October 1940-1941;
Revival in Washington in 1942
1942–1943 Without Love Jamie Coe Rowan St. James Theatre, New York City Toured first; New York, October 1942 - February 1943
1950 As You Like It Rosalind Cort Theatre, New York City Toured after New York
1952 The Millionairess Epifania New Theatre, London, UK;
Schubert Theatre, New York City
Played Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Manchester before London;
New York dates: 17 October - 28 December 1952
1955 The Taming of the Shrew Katherina Australia tour May - November 1955
1955 Measure for Measure Isabella Australia tour May - November 1955
1955 The Merchant of Venice Portia Australia tour May - November 1955
1957 The Merchant of Venice Portia American Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford
1957 Much Ado About Nothing Beatrice American Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford
1960 Twelfth Night Viola American Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford
1960 Antony and Cleopatra Cleopatra American Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford
1969–1971 Coco Coco Chanel Mark Hellinger Theatre, New York City Played New York 18 December 1969 - 3 August 1970;
Toured in 1971
1976–1977 A Matter of Gravity Mrs. Basil Broadhurst Theatre, New York City Began with a 12-week pre-Broadway tour;
After New York, toured U.S. for 6 months
1981–1982 The West Side Waltz Margaret Mary Elderdice On tour Toured U.S. before ending at Ethel Barrymore Theatre on Broadway

See also[edit]


  • Katharine Hepburn performances on IMDb
  • Katharine Hepburn performances at the Internet Broadway Database
  • Dickens, Homer (1990). The Films of Katharine Hepburn. Citadel Pr; 1st Carol Pub. ISBN 0-8065-1175-3.
  • Edwards, Anne (1985). A Remarkable Woman: A Biography of Katharine Hepburn. New York: William Morrow & Company, Inc. ISBN 0-688-04528-6.
  • Hepburn, Katharine (1991). Me: Stories of My Life. Knopf. ISBN 0-679-40051-6.