Whoa: Audrey Hepburn’s son had no idea she was a movie star

Elegance, poise, fashion, style, acting, humanitarian work, holding a cup of coffee while wistfully looking into Tiffany’s… the beautiful and perfect Audrey Hepburn is known for a lot of things. She is an icon, after all. But her youngest son, Luca Dotti, had absolutely no idea that his mother was known all over the world.

Luca — graphic artist, father of three, and son to Audrey’s second husband, Andrea Dotti — recently published a book called Audrey at Home that we have totally added to our summer reading list. According to People, the book features Audrey’s fave recipes, never-before-seen family pics, and the private side of Audrey that none of us ever witnessed on the big screen.

“To me, my mother was Audrey Dotti,” Luca said, according to People. “I never realized she was Audrey Hepburn. I didn’t know she was a movie star. She always looked at my father like he was the center of attention.”

Luca was often approached by journalists as a child, and they’d ask about “Audrey Hepburn”—which, at the time, he did not understand. “I’d say, ‘I don’t know who you are talking about. You must be mistaken. My mother is called Dotti,’ ” Luca explained. “I didn’t know she was Audrey Hepburn until I was 6 or so.”

So how exactly did Luca discover his momma was a fabulous movie star? By watching one of her movies, Love In The Afternoon, during a family movie night! “Suddenly, there was my mother kissing Gary Cooper,” he explained, according to People. “I remember perfectly because I was so embarrassed and I ran to my father and said, ‘Dad, this is serious. You should be upset. Mommy is kissing another man.’” Okay, that’s SUPER cute, TBH.

So why did Luca include some of his mom’s fave recipes in the book? To illustrate just how real and normal she was, says Luca. “She was a simple country girl,” Luca said of his mother, according to People. “Her favorite dish was spaghetti with tomato sauce… She stayed true to herself throughout her life. It shows in how she lived her life and her choice of recipes. She never wanted to overdo. She wasn’t interested in making fancy, important dishes. She preferred dishes that were easy to make and healthy for her kids.”

And even in regards to fashion, Audrey kept it low-key during her time at home, favoring comfortable, casual clothes. “If you imagine my mother in fashion, she started with Givenchy and Valentino, but at that end of her life, she was happier in jeans and a T-shirt,” Luca explained. “It was the same in how she cooked at home. It was back to the basics. She didn’t have to impress anyone, really. It was what she loved and how she lived.”

Audrey was — and remains — a beloved icon, but this wasn’t who she was as a person. In reality, she was a mother, a friend, and a woman who wanted to enjoy the simple things in life. “[She] wasn’t living her life as an icon,” Luca said, according to People. “She didn’t live in a castle behind bars. She wasn’t driven in a limo. She was walking with her dog most of the time.”

A percentage of the proceeds of Audrey at Home will be donated to the Audrey Hepburn Children’s Fund. We are so touched at how genuine and real Audrey was, and how hard she tried to give her children a normal and happy life, sans-paparazzi. Thanks, Luca, for sharing such an intimate part of your — and your mother’s — life.

(Images via IMDb)