Catherine Zeta-Jones’ heartwarming bond with late father-in-law Kirk Douglas revealed

Catherine Zeta-Jones wed Michael Douglas in 2000, and through their marriage, she was also introduced to his father, the late Hollywood legend Kirk Douglas. While the Spartacus actor sadly passed away in 2020, Catherine has continued to cherish their time together and more recently, she marked Father’s Day with a heartwarming post to her father-in-law – aka “Pappy”. 

We’re taking a closer look at their unbreakable bond…

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During an interview with Jimmy Kimmel, Catherine recalled how she could sit for hours with the actor, talking about his time in Tinseltown. “When you think of the Hollywood system back then, boy, it was tough! It’s tough for women today, but it was really tough then, all these women… and men were thrown into the stable and they were all pitted against each other to see who would get the role of the season, if the script was coming in,” she explained, showing her huge admiration for Kirk. 

Catherine Zeta-Jones and father-in-law Kirk Douglas, recipient of the "Milestone Award," pose for photographers at the Producers Guild of America 12th Annual Golden Laurel Awards March 3, 2001© Getty
Catherine loved speaking to Kirk about his time in Hollywood

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On his 103rd birthday in 2019, Catherine also revealed her adorable nickname for Kirk on Instagram. Posting a sweet photo of the two of them together, the 53-year-old wrote: “This guy on my knee, is 103!!!!! Happy Birthday Pappy!!! I love you with all my heart.”

Kirk Douglas and his daughter-in-law/actress Catherine Zeta-Jones arrive at the premiere of "The In-Laws" at the Cinerama Dome May 19, 2003© Getty
The actress nicknamed her father-in-law “pappy”

Prior to his passing, Kirk and Catherine had attended several red carpet events together and in 2018, the pair teamed up on stage at the Golden Globes to present the award for Best Screenplay – Motion Picture. 

Prior to announcing the result, the duo shared a heartwarming interaction. Beginning her presentation by calling her father-in-law a “living Hollywood legend,” Catherine said: “In 1991 my father-in-law, this living Hollywood legend Kirk, was recognised by the Writer’s Guild Of America for his role in ending the Hollywood Blacklist.”

Catherine Zeta-Jones and Kirk Douglas on stage at the Golden Globe Awards© Getty
Catherine and Kirk on stage at the Golden Globe Awards

Responding to Catherine’s kind words, Kirk eventually took the reins, replying: “Catherine, you said it all. I want to say a speech but I don’t want to say it because I could never follow you.” Kirk and Catherine also held hands during their appearance on stage.

On 5 February 2020, Catherine’s husband, Michael, released a statement on Facebook, confirming that his father Kirk had passed away at the age of 103. 

Catherine Zeta-Jones with her husband Michael and father-in-law Kirk in 2011
Catherine with her husband Michael and father-in-law Kirk in 2011

Following the news, the mom-of-two shared a black and white photo which showed her giving Kirk a kiss on the cheek. In the caption, Catherine wrote: “To my darling Kirk, I shall love you for the rest of my life. I miss you already. Sleep tight…” 

Since her father-in-law’s passing, Catherine has continued to post about him on Instagram. Back in June, the actress shared a photo of Michael and Kirk chatting with her children Carys and Dylan, to mark Father’s Day. 

“Happy Father’s Day to my husband @michaelkirkdouglas the best father my children could ever have. And to my father-in-law Kirk, we love you and miss you,” she captioned it. 

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