The Last Tango In Paris Rape Scene Is Just One Of Old Hollywood's Many Scandals

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It's easy to romanticize Old Hollywood as an era filled with glamour and grace. After all, don't we all love watching a charming black-and-white movie and daydreaming about a simpler, more dazzling time? But celebrities back then were hardly angels, and often found themselves embroiled in scandals that will completely shock you.

There were no tabloids or Twitter feuds to keep up with back then. So time may have forgotten some of these scandals...but we certainly haven't. We've all heard awful "casting couch" stories from recent years, and it turns out, Old Hollywood had its fair share of dirty secrets, from abortions to pedophilia.

Some of these stories are still hotly debated today (such as Woody Allen). But others are often forgotten. In light of resurfaced controversy about a nonconsensual scene 1972's Last Tango in Paris, it's time to look back at other celebrity scandals that went down long before Kim Kardashian clapped back at Taylor Swift, or Ryan Lochte hit Rio. Hollywood legends had plenty of skeletons they'd likely wish to keep in the closet.
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Marilyn Monroe & The Kennedy Family
These days, Marilyn Monroe is considered the epitome of Old Hollywood glamour, and many stars have tried to emulate her famous blonde hair, iconic good looks, and ineffable sex appeal. But Monroe was no stranger to scandal, having struggled with substance abuse and a rumored battle with depression. She had many famous suitors, but her most scandalous dalliances were affairs with then-President John F. Kennedy and his brother, Robert. We may never know the truth of Monroe's life and loves, but we do know that if she were here, she'd have plenty of stories to tell.
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Charlie Chaplin
Chaplin was one of the OG silent film stars, known for his slapstick humor and roles in Hollywood's earliest movies, but his reputation has always been tarnished by his numerous scandals. Chaplin was married four times and fathered 11 children, and his wives were often very, very young. According to The Huffington Post, "Chaplin was 29 when he married his first wife, who was just 16. The marriage was short-lived and Chaplin then moved on to another 16-year-old wife, who claimed that Chaplin married her after a pregnancy. This second marriage also ended in divorce and [his] second wife alleged that Chaplin tried to force her to have an abortion. The messy divorce hurt Chaplin’s reputation. Still, he went on to marry two more times, the third time to another young woman and for a fourth time to another teenager, 18, when he was in his 50s. It seems the fourth time was the charm for Chaplin, who stayed with his last wife until his death." Yikes.
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Elizabeth Taylor
The famous film star is known for her many marriages (eight marriages to seven husbands), but it was her extramarital affairs that plagued her reputation. Taylor was rumored to have had an affair with Richard Burton while still married to Eddie Fisher, whom she started dating soon after her third husband, director Mike Todd, died in a plane crash. Fisher and Taylor also had a sordid romance, as he was married to actress Debbie Reynolds during the time of his affair with Taylor. Are you dizzy yet? So are we. Taylor's scandals make the Brad Pitt-Angelina Jolie-Jennifer Aniston triangle look tame.
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Alfred Hitchcock
The beloved director is the mastermind behind some of Hollywood's best classic movies, including Psycho and The Birds. But the man behind the celluloid was known as a sexual predator, and reports have surfaced about his inappropriate sexual advances toward female stars. Tippi Hedren, star of Marnie and The Birds, said of Hitchcock's advances: "I don't know what to call it. It was something I'd never experienced before. It wasn't love. When you love someone, you treat them well. We are dealing with a mind here that is incomprehensible. And I certainly am not capable of discerning what was going through his mind or why. I certainly gave no indication that I was ever interested in a relationship with him." He was allegedly aggravated that she refused his repeated sexual advances.
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Natalie Wood
Wood was another of Hollywood's classic beauties, and her life and death were both marred in mystery. Wood was reportedly 16 when she began an affair with director Nicholas Ray to vie for parts in his movies. It's long been rumored that Wood was having an affair with fellow actor Christopher Walken, who was on a boat with her the night she tragically drowned. Wood's death has never been solved, and her husband at the time, Robert Wagner, claims her fall from the boat was an accident.
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Jack Ryan
Ryan was known for being the sixth husband of Hollywood legend Zsa Zsa Gabor, as well as being the creator of iconic toys like Barbie and Hot Wheels. But some disturbing stories have surfaced about him since his death in 1991. According to a book called Full Service: My Adventures in Hollywood and the Secret Sex Lives of the Stars by author Scotty Bowers, Ryan created Barbie as his vision of the ideal woman, with Bowers writing that he was "addicted to women...young, slim, attractive….[and] endowed with really big boobs." If that's not bad enough, Ryan also enjoyed inviting women over and luring them into a room with rose petals on the floor, only for them to find him lying in a coffin masturbating to "shock" them. So, there's that.
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Errol Flynn
The expression "in like Flynn" actually has some pretty gross undertones if Hollywood folklore is to be believed. Flynn was a known playboy and womanizer, and allegedly preferred underage girls. According to The Huffington Post, "In 1942, at the height of his career, Flynn met a 17-year-old girl named Betty Hansen who was an aspiring actress. After some partying, Hansen became sick from drinking and vomited. Hansen alleged that Flynn had taken her to a room under the guise of helping her clean up but then had seduced her. A complaint was filed and the actor was arrested." He was later cleared of all charges. He reportedly once claimed: "I like my whiskey old and my women young." Flynn also was rumored to have his house filled with peepholes and two-way mirrors to spy on women in his home. Despite all of this, he found his way back into the public's good graces before his death in 1959.
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Florence Henderson
This lovely lady was America's favorite TV mom thanks to her iconic role as Carol Brady on The Brady Bunch, but that doesn't mean Henderson herself was as spotless as her on-screen persona. Henderson revealed in her memoir that she got an STD after a one-night stand with then-New York City mayor John Lindsay, which happened while she was married. Henderson also sparked controversy after going on a date with her TV son Barry Williams, who was 20 years her junior and 16 at the time of the alleged interaction. Both Williams and Henderson remained good-humored about their "date," with Henderson writing on her official website, "That whole thing with Barry got blown way out of proportion. I guess in a sense it was a date, because Barry thought it was. But of course, I had no idea that his intentions were to 'date' me. It has made for a good story though!"
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Roman Polanski
One of Hollywood's most notorious scandals comes thanks to Polanski, who was arrested and plead guilty to raping a 13-year-old girl in 1977. He then fled to Paris to avoid the rape charges, and continues to live in France and Poland, avoiding a U.S. request for extradition. In a 1979 interview, Polanski reportedly said, "If I had killed somebody, it wouldn't have had so much appeal to the press, you see? But…fucking, you see, and the young girls. Judges want to fuck young girls. Juries want to fuck young girls. Everyone wants to fuck young girls!" He has since publicly apologized to his victim, saying that he "regrets" raping her, and continues to make Oscar-winning movies.
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Woody Allen
Allen is a more contemporary example of Hollywood scandal, but an important one to remember. Allen was accused of sexually abusing his 7-year-old adopted daughter, Dylan, by his then-partner Mia Farrow in 1992. The family then became embroiled in an intense legal battle, with the judge in the case reportedly telling Allen that his behavior toward his daughter was "grossly inappropriate and that measures must be taken to protect her." Allen was then involved in a subsequent scandal after Farrow discovered nude and sexually explicit photos of her adopted daughter, Soon-Yi Previn, who was 19 at the time. Allen and Previn soon began a relationship, and have since married.

For his part, Allen has vehemently denied any misconduct or misbehavior. “I didn’t find any moral dilemmas whatsoever,” Allen told Time about his relationship with Previn. “I didn’t feel that just because she was Mia’s daughter, there was any great moral dilemma. It was a fact, but not one with any great import. It wasn’t like she was my daughter.”
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Ronald Reagan
Before he became POTUS, Reagan was an actor who was reportedly abusive and predatory toward women. Actress Selene Walters claimed that in the 1950s, Reagan raped her, reportedly telling People of their encounter: "I opened the door, then it was the battle of the couch. I was fighting him. I didn't want him to make love to me. He's a very big man, and he just had his way. Date rape? No, God, no, that's [Kelley's] phrase. I didn't have a chance to have a date with him." Actress Piper Laurie, pictured here, also claimed in her memoir that Reagan took her virginity when she was 18 and he was 39, when he played her father in a movie.
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Clark Gable
Gable was one of Hollywood's original heartthrobs. His legacy has continued to last, even though he reportedly date raped actress Loretta Young when she was 23, impregnating her while he was married to another woman. Gable managed to hide the affair, the pregnancy, and the birth of their daughter from the public for more than a year. According to reports, Young didn't realize she had been date raped until she was 85, as she wasn't familiar with the term.
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Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle
Popular comedian Fatty Arbuckle was acquitted of charges stemming from the death of actress Virginia Rappe after a hotel party, during which Arbuckle reportedly violently abused and raped her. Suffering brutal injuries, including a ruptured bladder, Rappe died in the hospital days later. There wasn't enough evidence to charge Arbuckle, but his reputation suffered greatly after Rappe's death.
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Judy Garland
Garland is fondly remembered as one of Hollywood's most beloved actresses. But her life and legacy were shrouded in controversy due to her alleged substance abuse, which ultimately took her life at the age of 47. Garland is said to be the victim of the dark side of Hollywood, often cited for being exploited and mistreated by the public and people close to her in her life. Even at the height of her fame, Garland battled demons that the public only learned about in the decades after her untimely death.

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