Source: Mr. X via

These two foreign born acting legends, one of whom actually had a brief affair with this still living permanent A list mostly movie actor back in the day had the longest feud in Hollywood history.

It all went back to when the slightly older, but less famous of the two had a torrid romance with the younger alliterate actress and then dumped her. The younger actress never forgave this and threatened to have the older actress killed if she ever tried to talk to the younger actress again.

Slightly older actress: Marlene Dietrich

Younger actress: Greta Garbo

A list actor: Kirk Douglas

Marlene Dietrich – Did they have an affair?

For ages, there is this rumor of an affair between Garbo and Marlene. This rumor had its highlight in 2000 when writer Diana McLellan released her book The Girls: Sappho goes to Hollywood. The author wrote that, while doing her researches, she found proof of a never-before-reported affair between Garbo and Dietrich and wrote that their lifelong claim to be strangers was a lie. She wrote that they met in Berlin 1925 while Garbo was filming The Joyless Street and Marlene had a little part in the film.

The author wrote that Dietrich and Garbo met in 1925, had a love affair that ended badly – and spent the next 60 years denying they even knew each other. Their affair had ended with such a deeply hurtful betrayal of Garbo, that GG flatly refused to acknowledge Dietrich’s existence for the rest of their lives – even when the two women simultaneously shared lovers in Hollywood.

The screen legends met in post-World War 1 Berlin. Garbo, an agonizingly self-conscious 19-year-old, was here to appear in the film The Joyless Street. Dietrich, a 23-year-old mother – then black-haired and sexually voracious – had a small part in the movie. She was only too happy to steer Greta around Berlin’s gay and lesbian bars, sex circuses and sleazy cabarets. Their affair began… and it ended just weeks later, in part because of cruel gossip by Dietrich, fuelled by jealousy of the rising star – one who seemed to gain in mere months what Marlene had struggled years to attain.

Marlene, educated and snobbish, had quickly realized that Greta, who grew up dirt poor with little formal education, was shockingly narrow-minded, ignorant and provincial. Marlene made her opinion known not only to Greta but to others in her circle. Marlene even revealed that Greta wore “dirty underclothes.”

Garbo was wounded, shamed and traumatized. And when both performers went to work in Hollywood, a mutual friend, actress Salka Viertel, negotiated a deal between the feuding stars – they agreed not to mention each other’s name or spill any secrets. The two enemies shared the most intimate friends and lovers, writer Mercedes de Acosta, actor John Gilbert, actress Dolores Del Rio, and others, without so much as a word passing between them or speaking each other’s names in public. Finally, in the summer of 1945, Marlene decided it was time to attempt a reconciliation with Garbo.

After all, peace had just been sealed between the deadliest enemies on earth; it had been 20 long years since her own conquest and humiliation of Garbo in Berlin. Surely their war was over. Dietrich proposed a meeting an neutral territory, arranged by Orson Welles at the home of Clifton Webb. Marlene oozed charm. She paid Garbo extravagant compliments and larded on the flattery – to which all Garbo would say was, Thank you. Eventually, Marlene gave up and fled. World War 2 was over, yes. But Dietrich and Garbo would never sign a treaty.- Source

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