happy-birthday-audrey-hepburn-1Annex - Hepburn, Audrey (Breakfast at Tiffany's)_21

Audrey Hepburn was an iconic hollywood starlet of the 1950s. She is most recognizable from her film “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” which was made in the early 1960s. These two pictures were taken from Hulton Archive/Getty Images from, and both were photographed in the early 1960s. After her breakthrough role in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” Hepburn became an international icon for the era, and was “ranked by the American Film Institute as the third greatest female screen legend in the history of American Cinema.”

Long after her film career ended, Hepburn went on to fund and work for the UNICEF humanitarian organization, and eventually became the Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF. She was honored the Medal of Freedom from George H.W. Bush, while also receiving the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award. These were just a couple of awards and recognitions that Audrey Hepburn was awarded with for her efforts and hard work in UNICEF.

However, despite all these prestigious awards and honors, Audrey Hepburn is only recognized in the media as a “pretty face.” Media decides to portray Audrey as one that lived a happy life, who gained success and wealth because of her looks. The media fails to include all of her amazing and remarkable accomplishments in her humanitarian career, simply for the sake of keeping her as a beautiful Hollywood icon.

Audrey Hepburn’s portrayal in the media, although not necessarily untrue, is one major example of how media has the tendency to take history and “conveniently leave things out,” to make it seem different than it actually is. Yes, Audrey Hepburn was the hollywood icon of he 1950s and 60s, however the media does not attribute all of her humanitarian efforts after her career, simply because it wasn’t her image. Many people today who think of “Audrey Hepburn,” think of her role in “Breakfast at Tiffiany’s,” as they do not know about her post-career success in humanitarianism, all because of the media’s portrayal of her. Although it is easy to criticize the media now, media back then was completely different than it is today. What is important to take from this example is that as a society, we ourselves must constantly question the media around us, and take a careful look at how it is portrayed/relayed to us.

Audrey Hepburn was an amazing woman, with an incredible background, iconic filming career, and awe-inspiring humanitarian career, and she should be recognized for all aspects of her life, not just the “shiny” part.

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