The Truth About Jimmy Stewart's Relationship With His Wife Gloria McLean

One of the most recognizable faces from Hollywood's golden age was James "Jimmy" Stewart. He got his first taste of acting while attending Princeton, and really started to pursue it after he graduated when he joined the University Players (per Biography.) Within a few years he grabbed his first movie contract with MGM and that is where his film career really got started. Between 1935 and 1941 he starred in films such as "Born to Dance" and "The Philadelphia Story," for which he won an Oscar.

In 1941 Stewart took time off from the acting business to serve his country during World War II. Upon his return to the states, he was then cast in arguably his most well-known role, as George Bailey in the Christmas classic, "It's A Wonderful Life." As he became one of Hollywood's leading men, there was one thing that was still missing from his life: true love.

Jimmy Stewart had an impressive dating history

Before he met the woman who would become the love of his life, Jimmy Stewart was one of the most recognizable and sought-after men in Hollywood. Despite being viewed as the movie industry's most eligible bachelors, he seemed to have his share of trouble when it came to finding love. According to Closer Weekly, Stewart dated the likes of Ginger Rogers (above), Olivia de Havilland, and Marlene Dietrich — some of the film industry's most recognizable and successful artists. However, Stewart's first "love" was actress Margaret Sullavan. 

The two had worked on a series of movies together over the years, and reportedly Stewart was completely smitten with Sullivan. Though the co-stars remained friends through the years, unfortunately for Stewart, Sullavan was in love with his best friend and fellow actor, Henry Fonda. Fonda and Sullavan married, though the union only lasted a few months. Stewart remained friends with both of them over the years.

Despite his multiple failed relationships, Stewart did finally find love. It happened at a dinner party in 1948, when he met model Gloria McLean.  

Love at first sight

According to Fabiosa, the love story of Jimmy Stewart and Gloria McLean is one for the ages. When the couple met, McLean was a divorced mother of two boys, and Stewart was Hollywood's most well-known bachelor. That, however, did not stop Stewart from falling head-over-heels in love. In his own words, "it was love at first sight." The couple were married within a year, and Stewart adopted McLean's two sons, before the couple was blessed with their own set of twin girls.

The Stewarts went on to have a long, loving, and happy marriage, despite having a blended family and Stewart's fame. They remained committed to each other and very much in love for 45 years, until death parted them. McLean developed lung cancer and passed away in 1994 (per Fabiosa). Stewart was reportedly never the same after the loss of his beloved, and died three years later, with his last words being, "I'm going to be with Gloria now" (per IMDb). Their relationship could be considered one of Hollywood's greatest love stories.