Home » 17 then and now photos of Sam Elliott and Katharine Ross that portray true Hollywood love story

17 then and now photos of Sam Elliott and Katharine Ross that portray true Hollywood love story

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Hollywood stars often get loads of attention from the public due to their glamorous, larger-than-life lifestyles. But there are others, such as legendary Hollywood star Sam Elliott, who have attracted attention for a very different reason: proving to the world that true love does exist.

When Sam Elliott met the love of his life Katharine Ross, she was already an established actress — and married. But for Elliott, it was love at first sight — and he knew he was going to have to be patient.

Now, 77 year old Sam Elliott has been married to his beloved wife Katharine Ross for no less than three long decades — and counting.

Sam Elliott certainly has countless female fans around the world. But the Hollywood heartthrob has eyes for only one woman: his wife of almost four decades, Katharine Ross.


Indeed, Sam and Katharine’s loving relationship could be taken straight out of a Hollywood romance movie.

The two met when Katharine Ross landed the leading role in the 1969 film Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Elliott, meanwhile, played a role he described as just a “shadow on the wall.”

Paul Newman and Katharine Ross in ‘Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid’, directed by George Roy Hill, 1969. Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images

Elliott was too shy to approach her at the time, telling AARP The Magazine: “I didn’t dare try to talk to her then. She was the leading lady. I was a shadow on the wall, a glorified extra in a bar scene.”

Sam Elliott and actress Katharine Ross attending the premiere of “The China Syndrome” on March 6, 1979. Ron Galella/Getty Images

Elliott was immediately taken by Ross, but it wasn’t until they met again on the set of The Legacy in 1978 that he finally dared interact with her.

Katharine Ross and Sam Elliott attending 45th Annual Golden Globe on January 23, 1988 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California.
Photo by Ron Galella/Getty Images
Katharine Ross and Sam Elliott in 1981
Ron Galella via Getty Images

The two hit it off immediately — and six years later, they were married.

In 1979, Ross divorced her then spouse and married Elliott in 1984.

Ross, who is five years older than Elliott, was married to her fourth husband at the time, while Elliott had never been married before.


The same year they married, Elliott and Ross welcomed their daughter, Cleo Rose, to the world.

Sam Elliott, actress Katharine Ross, and daughters Cleo Elliott and Rose Elliott attening “The Moscow Circus” on March 14, 1990 at the Great Western Forum in Inglewood, California. Photo by Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
Ron Galella, Ltd/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

After such a history of failed marriages, chances are that Ross couldn’t have felt so certain about how well her fifth (!) would go — but three decades later she can be sure she made the right decision.

Katharine Ross and Sam Elliott March in 1984.
Ron Galella/Getty Images

“We have a common sensibility, but we also work at being together. You work past the s–t; you don’t walk away from it. That’s how relationships last,” Elliott says.


Elliott and Ross even got to fulfill a dream they’d had during their relationship: to actually share the screen as husband and wife. They managed to do that twice: in The Hero as well as Love Letters, the latter of which Elliott calls a highlight of his career.

So how does Elliott explain the couple’s success?


“Through mutual love and a mutual respect,” he says, adding that Ross is “a pretty stable girl who has been around the block.”

At the end of the day, determination is key: “There are peaks and valleys like everything else, but you have to push on,” Elliott told the San Francisco Chronicle.


Here are Elliott and Ross recently, looking as glamorous as ever, at the 91st Acadamy Awards. Elliott was nominated for Best Supporting Actor for A Star Is Born.

Sam Elliott, Katharine Ross and daughter Cleo Rose Elliott are seen on June 05, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by gotpap/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)

What an amazing couple that seems so genuinely happy and in love!

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Tylor Miller

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