10 Hollywood Memoirs That Take You Behind the Scenes

Hollywood is the home of countless fascinating stories, but none are as captivating as those from the people who have worked and lived in Tinseltown. From an icon of the silent era to one of today’s most outspoken opponents of the Church of Scientology, this list features several of the most scintillating celebrity memoirs by some of Hollywood’s biggest power players. If you’re obsessively watching Ryan Murphy’s new hit show FEUD about the legendary rivalry between Bette Davis and Joan Crawford, this reading list is your next obsession.

Lulu In Hollywood
by Louise Brooks

One of Hollywood’s earliest It Girls, Louise Brooks analyzes the rise and fall of her own career in this eye-opening and timeless collection of essays. With evocative and whip-smart prose, Brooks uncovers Hollywood’s cruelty toward its female stars and provides a clear-eyed, behind-the-scenes look at the machine that was Golden Age Hollywood.

Tab Hunter Confidential
by Tab Hunter

An inspirational and moving memoir of survival and fighting back against the power that movie studios exerted over their stars. TAB HUNTER CONFIDENTIAL chronicles his manufactured career, his struggle against his boy-next-door image, and how he came to terms with his sexuality.

Rita Moreno
by Rita Moreno

The only Latina to win an EGOT (two Emmys, a Grammy, an Oscar, and a Tony), Rita Moreno has broken down numerous boundaries yet also suffered from typecasting. Her story—from winning the Academy Award for “West Side Story” to her affair with Marlon Brando—is a dazzling and insightful tale of one of the greatest stars of stage and screen.

Troublemaker
by Leah Remini

From beloved sitcom star to Scientology’s fiercest critic, Leah Remini’s life has been an astonishing tale of survival. In her brave and outspoken memoir, TROUBLEMAKER, she opens up about her public split from the religion she had been a part of since childhood and her dedication to living honestly and freely with her family.

I Loved Her in the Movies
by Robert Wagner

With a career that has spanned more than 60 years, Robert Wagner has met and worked with many of the most beloved actresses Hollywood has ever produced. In this breathless collection of memories—featuring Bette Davis, Marilyn Monroe, and of course, his late wife, Natalie Wood—Wagner reflects on many stars and what made them so electrifying on the screen.

By Myself and Then Some
by Lauren Bacall

Lauren Bacall, remembered as one of the sexiest, sharpest, and most spirited actresses of her time, brings her wit and charm to this award-winning memoir. Intimate and frank, BY MYSELF AND THEN SOME explores her long and storied career in movies and theater, her love of New York City and her family, and her legendary romance with Humphrey Bogart.

Talk Show
by Dick Cavett

One of America’s most respected talk show hosts, Dick Cavett has interviewed everyone from John Lennon to Katharine Hepburn. Here he eloquently reflects on his illustrious career, explores his encounters with some of the most famous stars of the twentieth century, and makes his signature wry cultural observations.

I Blame Dennis Hopper
by Illeana Douglas

In this clever love letter to the movies, Illeana Douglas demonstrates that few art forms can be as life-changing as cinema. Here, she reflects on being raised by parents who were inspired by the hippie lifestyle in “Easy Rider” and her career—from working with Martin Scorsese on her first film to becoming an award-winning writer and director.

‘Tis Herself
by Maureen O'Hara

A fascinating life story from one of the most colorful and strong-willed stars of classic Hollywood, Maureen O’Hara. This candid and vivacious memoir features captivating anecdotes of her 70-year-long career and her work with legends such as Alfred Hitchcock and James Stewart. ’TIS HERSELF brilliantly reveals O’Hara’s strength, charm, and talent.

Me
by Katharine Hepburn

In Katharine Hepburn’s candid memoir, she opened up and reminisced about the highs and lows of her astonishing life and career. Witty, illuminating, lively, and charming, ME is like having a fascinating conversation with one of the most beloved icons of classic Hollywood.