Darrelyn Gunzburg
March 2005

On 27th February, 2005, at the 77th Academy Awards, Cate Blanchett won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal of Katharine Hepburn in the movie “The Aviator”. No-one who sees Blanchett’s work can doubt her ability to forge believable, enjoyable and complex characters in the films she chooses. Whilst we do not have a timed birth for Blanchett (noon chart used above – see “Sun” Newspaper, Melbourne, Australia, 1969), one of the striking elements of their charts is that both women have their Suns in Taurus within 20 of each other.

Clearly the rest of their chart will be different but utilising the parans of Starlight, we can ask: how do the ancient star myths – the parans that sit underneath these two Suns – make these Taurus Suns distinct?

Hepburn has Alcyone in paran with her Sun from birth:
Starlight says of this star and planet combination –
The ruthless visionary, a passionate and arrogant person

This combination stays with her for her whole life and as she matures, so it matures. She does not pick up new parans to her Sun until the end of her life:

Hepburn has Zuben Eschamali in paran with her Sun as her life’s summation

Starlight says of this star and planet combination –

The ability to influence society through one’s work

Hepburn’s Sun in Taurus is in the 7th house conjunct the Moon (New Moon), trine Mars in Capricorn (exalted) and sextile Saturn. A compulsive relator, she seeks the security of the material world (Sun in Taurus) through a business partner or intimate relationship. This could have been someone who married young (Sun in the 7th) and was then afraid of stepping out of the security of that relationship (Sun in Taurus).

However, Hepburn’s Sun rules the 10th house and is connected to the Cross of Matter (square to the MC): as a result of her career (Sun ruling the 10th) Hepburn became highly effective at creating business opportunities for herself which required responsibility and authority (Sun sextile Saturn), practicality (earth trine between Sun and Mars) and the determination never to sit back on her laurels (exalted Mars) and take what she had achieved for granted.

When a star is rising with the Sun, the issue is firstly going to be contained by the person’s father figure. Hepburn was determined, vibrant and distinctive, the daughter of a doctor who treated venereal disease and who encouraged his children in all forms of physical strength and sport: golf, tennis, diving, swimming, wrestling, gymnastics, running, jumping, biking (Sun trine Mars). He didn’t believe Hepburn’s acting career would last, so when she sent money home from her early successes in Hollywood, he invested it well so she would always have a nest egg (Sun in Taurus). The best support he gave her was his advice: “Paddle your own canoe.”

Here we see the passion and what could be called the arrogance of independence of Alcyone. This had later repercussions when Hepburn entered the conservative, controlling world of male-dominated Hollywood. Alcyone’s “ruthless vision” and passion gave her a reputation for being outspoken and demanding and unlike many of her contemporaries, Hepburn never changed her name.

In her adult years Alcyone’s ruthlessness and passion steered her practical, relationship/ business-oriented Sun in Taurus to take a risk which paid off – an uncomfortable action for most Taurus Suns. In 1938 a major exhibitor’s report labelled her “box-office poison” when a string of her movies failed to pull audiences. Enraged, Hepburn settled her contract with the studio and left Hollywood for the stage, vowing only to return on her own terms. She starred in the stage play The Philadelphia Story, written especially for her, and was a huge success. When MGM came to claim the movie rights, it was Hepburn who owned them. The head of the studio conceded defeat, gave in to her salary demands and hired her choice of leading men. To this day The Philadelphia Story is the screen’s supreme comedy of manners and it reinstated Hepburn’s place as a leading lady in movies permanently. The passion and determination of Alcyone had won! Her new contract (Sun in the 7th house) even gave her script and director approval. From then on she continued to dominate in the cinema and won four Academy Awards. No other actor to date had more than two. Her first and last Oscars were 48 years apart. Here is the maturing Sun in paran with Alcyone developing, growing stronger and affecting her whole life.

Zuben Eschamali, the ability to influence society through one’s work,
is the star that enters the stage in her later years.


Hepburn was one of the first movie stars to take control of her career while still working within the confines of the studio system. Her career spanning over fifty years in comedy, drama, adventure suffered its share of ups and downs but Hollywood learned never to write her off. In her seventies she was active in lead roles in great movies with classic leading men when most actresses had retired or were severely limited in their work options. As she grew older so she was able to influence society through the characters she played and she became one of the few working actresses allowed to show age on screen through great parts, not as adjuncts or accessories to leading men. 

In contrast, Blanchett’s Taurus Sun is in opposition to her Neptune

Blanchett’s Sun in Taurus opposition Neptune gives her the ability to merge with and take on the skin of her characters. It also offers her a lifelong struggle (the opposition) between the security of the material world (Sun in Taurus) and the need for emotional happiness through surrender to the enchantment of the non-material world (Sun-Neptune). Hence she will always be confronted with issues of faith, trust and honesty (Sun-Neptune) in her pursuit for the safety of the known world (Sun in Taurus). As long as she maintains her integrity and does not yield to the seduction of the physical world alone, she can be both creative and secure. Indeed Blanchett has been quoted as seeing her craft as “a process of accumulation and elimination” and that what drives her is not the money but the desire to experience new things through the characters she inhabits.

Blanchett has two stars pouring their ancient mythology into her Taurus Sun:

The Sun with Pollux active from birth:

Starlight says of this star and planet combination –

To be considered a researcher or inventor

Blanchett also has The Sun with Ankaa active from birth:

Starlight says of this star and planet combination –

The desire to alter and transform

Like Hepburn, this star rising with the Sun is projected onto her father figure. Blanchett’s father, a Texan advertising executive, died of a heart attack when she was ten. This is the symbolism of the Sun-Neptune being seen as the father-figure who makes money (Sun in Taurus) from working in the world of illusion (Sun-Neptune), as well as the lost or weakened father-figure (Sun-Neptune).

However, when we look at the parans sitting underneath this Taurus Sun, we start to understand how Blanchett sees her father and what he is reflecting back to her. Blanchett experiences him as the inventor (Pollux) and transformer (Ankaa), the magician, the one who researches ideas and transforms them into packets of illusion. She’s learnt a magical or shamanistic skill from her father, captured in her chart by not only her Sun-Neptune but emphasized by her Sun in paran to Pollux and Ankaa. Instead of advertising, she chooses acting.

Then in her Prime Blanchett has The Sun with Mirfak:

Starlight says of this star and planet combination –

The enthusiasm of the warrior

Blanchett’s Sun in Taurus could have stayed within the safety and security of the small theatrical world of Australia. However, as she matures, her Taurus Sun picks up new parans to Mirfak, the warrior, so her Taurus Sun also takes risks. It is in this current period of her life that she can push forward with her creativity, taking advantage of opportunities and setting up creative challenges for herself. She is also known for her charitable work on behalf of women’s and children’s causes, another interpretation of the Sun-Neptune (women’s issues) connected with Mirfak, the warrior.

So what lies ahead of her?

In her latter years Blanchett has two stars flooding her Taurus Sun with their ancient stories:

The Sun with Ras Algethi

Starlight says of this star and planet combination-

Seeking the natural order of life; balance in diet and life habits

The Sun with Alcyone

Starlight says of this star and planet combination –

The ruthless visionary, a passionate and arrogant person

This suggests that her work on behalf of women and children may well take a greater precedence alongside her acting later in her life as she strives to find a natural balance which will give her life greater fulfilment (Ras Algethi).

However, there is fascinating correlation to this tale. Two Suns, both alike in flavour, vastly different in how they have been expressed as a result of the parans which sit underneath them, come together through Alcyone, for what life offers Blanchett in her latter years (Alcyone, “The ruthless visionary, a passionate and arrogant person ”) is the same energy underpinning Hepburn‘s Sun in her youth. One could surmise that the gift Hepburn gives to Blanchett is not only her first Oscar but also a way of standing firm on issues which are important to her. Hepburn and Blanchett have more in common than just their Taurus Suns. They have the charisma and passion of Alcyone.


Hepburn, Katharine (1991) Me: Stories of My Life,London : Viking.

“THE SUN” Newspaper, Australia – Thursday, MAY 15th, 1969. BLANCHETT (Gambie) – To June and Bob a daughter (Catherine Elise) at James McPherson, May 14th. Both Well.