Arts & Culture

10 Celebrities With the Most Marriages And Their Quotes About Finding Love

Ranked in descending order.
IMAGE WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
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The love lives of our darling celebrities have always been in the public eye, a favorite topic in conversations and gossip columns. The stars on this list (mostly from the Old Hollywood era) were not only famous for their looks, charm, and glamour but by the number of times they said ‘I Do.’ To jog your memory, or simply to keep you in check, here are 10 celebrities who have tied the knot at least five times. 

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1. Zsa Zsa Gabor (9 marriages)

Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

“A man in love is incomplete until he has married. Then he's finished.”

Zsa Zsa Gabor and Conrad Hilton
Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

Hungarian-American actress Zsa Zsa Gabor was a prominent figure in the ‘50s and ‘60s. She was known for her work in Nightmare on Elm Street and for her TV show guestings. Outside her career, she was known for her sophistication, beauty, and her marriage count. Her first marriage was to a Turkish politician in 1942, followed by an affair with the Turkish president, until they divorced after they moved to America. She married hotel magnate Conrad Hilton Senior with whom she had one child. Succeeding husbands were actor George Sanders, banker Herbert Hutner, Barbie doll designer Jack Ryan, and divorce lawyer Michael O’Mara. This was followed by her marriage to Mexican lawyer Felipe de Alba, and in 1986, she married Frederic Prinz von Anhalt and remained with him until her final days.

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2. Elizabeth Taylor (8 marriages)

Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton
Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

I’ve always admitted that I’m ruled by my passions.”

Elizabeth Taylor and Michael Wilding
Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

It’s not hard to imagine why Elizabeth Taylor lured in so many men (and battled a scandal or two). Her timeless beauty, elegance, and sensuality are striking on and offscreen. She married Conrad Hilton Junior in 1950, who was followed by Michael Wilding in 1952 with whom she had two children. In 1957, she married Mike Todd, and to the shock of many, then married Eddie Fisher who was Debbie Reynolds’ husband first. They divorced in 1964, the year she married Richard Burton, who was probably the love of her life. In fact, they married and divorced twice. He was followed by American politician John Warner, and last, construction worker Larry Fortensky (they met in rehab and were married at Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch). 

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3. Larry King (8 marriages)

Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

"When I look back, there are a few regrets. I certainly wouldn't have gotten married eight times. But I don't dwell on regrets."

Television show and radio host Larry King has made quite the name for himself for his work in the media, but unbeknownst to many is his marriage count. He first married his childhood sweetheart Freda Miller in 1952, followed by Annette Kay, then Playboy bunny Alene Akins. He was married to Mickey Sutphin for four years before marrying Akins a second time in 1967. He then wed Math teacher and production assistant Sharon Lapore, who was followed by businesswoman Julie Alexander. In 1997, he locked down his current wife, singer and actress Shawn Southwick.  

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4. Mickey Rooney (8 marriages)

Mickey Rooney and Martha Vickers
Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

“Always get married in the morning. That way if it doesn't work out, you haven't wasted the whole day.”

Mickey Rooney and Jan Rooney
Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

As popular as he was for being a vaudevillian, actor, and true comic, Mickey Rooney was never associated with successful romances. His first wife was fellow MGM actress Ava Gardner, whom he married in 1942 and divorced a year after.  She was followed by singer Betty Jane Baker (who did backup vocals for Elvis Presley) and they were together for five years. After which ensued a string of marriages with actresses, namely Martha Vickers, Elaine Devry, and Barbara Ann Thomason (her screen name was Carolyn Mitchell). He then married Marge Lane in 1966 and they were together for two years before he tied the knot with Carolyn Hockett in Las Vegas. His last spouse was actress Jan Chamberlin and they were together from 1978 to 2014. Throughout his marriages, Rooney fathered 11 children.

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5. Lana Turner (8 marriages)

Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

A successful man is one who makes more money than his wife can spend. A successful woman is one who can find such a man.”

Lana Turner with Stephen Crane
Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

Just like her contemporary Elizabeth Taylor, silver screen siren Lana Turner married the same man twice. Her first marriage, though, was to clarinetist and famous composer Artie Shaw. She then married restaurateur Steve Crane twice—once in 1942 and the year after. Her short-lived relationship with Crane was followed by a four-year marriage to Bob Topping. She married Lex Barker who played Tarzan in the movie franchise four times. The ‘60s saw Turner’s last three marriages: One to Fred May, Robert Eaton, and lastly, to Ronald Pellar who had been convicted of fraud and several criminal offenses. 

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6. Artie Shaw (8 marriages)

Artie Shaw and Evelyn Keyes
Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

“You have no idea of the women I didn't marry.”

Lana Turner and Artie Shaw
Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

Artie Shaw and Lana Turner’s marriage didn’t last long, but they were on the same page with regards to their marriage count. One of the great bandleaders of the Swing Era, Shaw was probably the only man who married the most number of movie actresses, or at least had the most number of relationships with them. The Atlantic even said, “he's rivaled only by Sinatra when it comes to the number of A-list Hollywood babes he got to see.”

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His first wife was Jane Cairns, followed by Margaret Allen, with whom he was married for three years. He then eloped with and married Lana Turner in 1940, while he was engaged to Betty Grable. He married Betty Kern, daughter of popular songwriter Jerome Kern, and they lasted for a year. Kern was followed by the author of Forever Amber Kathleen Winsor, and actresses Doris Dowling and Evelyn Keyes, whom he was with from 1957 to 1985.

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7. Jerry Lee Lewis (7 marriages)

Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

“When they look back on me I want 'em to remember me not for all my wives, although I've had a few, and certainly not for any mansions or high livin' money I made and spent. I want 'em to remember me simply for my music.”

The series of marriages under rock ‘n’ roll star Jerry Lee Lewis’ belt was mostly controversial. He first got married at the age of 16, wedding a 17-year-old girl named Dorothy Barton, a preacher’s daughter. He then married Jane Mitchum. They were married for four years and had two children together. Lewis’ third wife was the most controversial one yet. Her name was Myra Gale Brown, his 13-year-old cousin. After bringing her to a concert, the public discovered her age and the uproar escalated quickly. This “almost killed his career,” says CBS News. Their marriage lasted 13 years. His fourth wife, Jaren Elizabeth Gunn Pate, tragically drowned in a swimming pool at a friend’s home. Shawn Stephens was his fifth wife, whom he was married to for 77 days up until her mysterious death caused by overdosing on methadone. Some people even accused him of murder. In 1984, he married Kerrie McCarver and they divorced in 2005. He is currently married to Judith Lewis (née Brown).   

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8. Hedy Lamarr (6 marriages)

Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

I am not ashamed to say that no man I ever met was my father's equal, and I never loved any other man as much.”

Unbeknownst to many, Lamarr was more than just a beautiful actress. She was also an inventor who created the predecessor of wi-fi. (Thankfully, her scientific achievements will be recognized in a Showtime series starring Gal Gadot). As for her personal life, she married six times in a span of 32 years. Her first marriage was to fellow Austrian Fritz Mandi, whom she was with for four years. Husband No. 2 was Gene Markley, an American screenwriter and naval officer. From 1943 to 1947, she married a British actor who starred in many films in the ‘20s and ‘30s. For a year, she was married to “Germany’s Swing King,” Teddy Stauffer. Husband No. 6 was Houston oilman William Howard Lee, who was followed by lawyer Lewis J. Boies in 1963. 

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9. Tony Curtis (6 marriages)

Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

Someone said to me, ‘Hey, what's it like kissing Marilyn Monroe?’ I said, ‘It's like kissing Hitler. What are you doing asking me such a stupid question?’”

Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh
Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

Talented American actor Bernard Schwartz changed his name to Anthony Curtis after signing with Universal Studios. Although he had countless films from the late '40s until 2008, the peak of his career was in the late ‘50s and the ‘60s as well. His first wife was Janet Leigh, the beautiful actress with whom he had two children, namely, actresses Jamie Lee Curtis and Kelly Curtis. Leigh starred in the 1949 film adaptation of Little Women. They were married from 1951 to 1962. Curtis’ second wife was German-Austrian actress Christine Kaufmann. She was followed by Leslie Allen, his longest marriage, with whom he was married for 14 years. Wife No. 4 was American actress Andrea Savio, known for her ‘80s films such as Stryker. Curtis’ next marriage to Lisa Deutsch only lasted for a year. He then married his last wife, Jill Curtis (née Vandenberg) in 1998 and they were together until his final days.  

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10. Rita Hayworth (5 marriages)

Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

“I guess the only jewels of my life were the pictures I made with Fred Astaire.”

James Hill and Rita Hayworth
Photo by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

Gene Kelly once said that she was his favorite dance partner. Although Rita Hayworth achieved great success alongside screen partners such as Glenn Ford and Fred Astaire, she had many partners offscreen, too. The queen of the ‘40s and the top pin-up girl during the Second World War, Hayworth first married in 1937 to Edward Charles Judson, who later on became her manager. Husband No. 2 didn’t have a big name. He was just Orson Welles, one of America’s greatest film directors. Welles said she was his “great love.” She then married Prince Aly Khan, a son of Sultan Mahommed Shah, Aga Khan III. They had one child together, whom she had failed to gain custody of. Afterward, she tied the knot with Dick Haymes who was having financial struggles because of two other ex-wives demanding him to pay his debts. Eventually, Hayworth left him. Her last husband was film producer James Hill whom she divorced after three years due to their conflicting career interests.  

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