Released in 1953 when Hollywood wasn’t as trashy and mass-produced as it is now, Roman Holiday was the romantic comedy of the time. And as we all know, everyone loves a rom-com – especially when it’s about a royal princess discovering Rome all by herself.

Roman Holiday is one of those tongue-in-cheek films, with Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn making a perfect and delightful duo. The film is so distinctive that the United States National and Film Registry said it was “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant” when it was selected for preservation in the Library of Congress in 1999.

Furthermore, Roman Holiday was also the beginning of Audrey Hepburn’s huge film career. Hepburn won an Academy Award for Best Actress due to her effortless and stylish portrayal of Ann, the crown princess of an unspecified country. Throughout the course of the film, Hepburn has two different hairstyles, many different outfits but only one kiss – a completely unusual concept for a rom-com in this day and age. It was said that Gregory Peck knew that Roman Holiday would propel Ms Hepburn to stardom as he told the designers of the promotional posters it should be her name above his, not the other way around. And low and behold, she became a star, and rightfully so.

The romantic love affair begins when Princess Ann is given a sedative from her doctor to calm her down after she becomes frustrated and emotional about her tightly-packed schedule while touring Rome. So she sneaks our of her country’s embassy and ends up falling asleep on a bench when Peck’s character, Joe Bradley, finds her. Later when he realises it’s the princess, Bradley realises he could exploit her for a news story when she wakes up, but it goes terribly wrong and his conscience catches up with him. In the end, he (obviously) falls in love with her and realises he couldn’t sell a story about her as sentiment gets the better of him.

All in all, Roman Holiday is adorably sweet and charming with Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck’s sublime acting making it so. The chemistry between the two is electric and the reason why Roman Holiday is still remembered today.