Amid the flowers of June weddings and Father’s Day tomorrow, I wanted to take this opportunity to celebrate your influence. During the classic era of Hollywood surrounded by the tall, dark, and handsome actors like Gregory Peck, Cary Grant, and Jimmy Stewart, despite your diminutive size and homely name and features, your magical charisma made women desire you and men want to be like you. You defined for generations the concept of the Man’s Man.
Director John Huston sure loved you as his leading man. When you starred and he directed, the film became an instant classic.
Ouch! Look at that Post-Pearl Harbor paranoia in the poster.
Speaking of directors, you made Michael Curtiz famous with these winners:
Thank you, by the way, for starring in Casablanca. Your tough guy exterior and soft interior made you perfect on the screen. It is still THE best movie ever. Here’s more films directed by Michael Curtiz.
I liked your no-nonsense approach to life. These are some of your sayings that make me smile:
“I don’t approve of the John Waynes and the Gary Coopers saying ‘Shucks, I ain’t no actor — I’m just a bridge builder or a gas station attendant.’ If they aren’t actors, what the hell are they getting paid for? I have respect for my profession. I worked hard at it.”
“I came out here with one suit and everybody said I looked like a bum. Twenty years later Marlon Brando came out with only a sweatshirt and the town drooled over him. That shows how much Hollywood has progressed.”
“I made more lousy pictures than any actor in history.”
“The problem with the world is that everyone is a few drinks behind.”
“Acting is like sex: you either do it and don`t talk about it, or you talk about it and don`t do it. That`s why I`m always suspicious of people who talk too much about either.”
“A hotdog at the ballpark is better than a steak at the Ritz.”
With over fifty films to your credit, it was a shame you died of throat cancer at the age of 57. Your leading lady adored you. While the twenty-six year age difference seemed awkward, your devotion to each other made you Hollywood’s greatest couple. There’s only one Bogie and Bacall.
I’ve included a video highlighting Lauren Bacall’s WIN life-time achievement award with clips of your famous roles. Your adult children give a peek of your amazing wife and your fame together.
Lauren Bacall is now in her 80s and forever beautiful. I was moved to tears when she won the 2009 Academy Honorary Award. She had been nominated for Best Supporting Actress in 1996 for her role in The Mirror Has Two Faces, but lost to Juliette Binoche for The English Patient.
Thanks, Bogie and Bacall, for being the class act immortalized. Hollywood has always put out crappy movies and been the center for torrid affairs and ludicrous lives of the rich and famous, but you two symbolize the best of Hollywood, bringing integrity to characters who do the right thing and make the tough choices in the end. The direction by Huston and Curtiz remind me that films can be art forms which add beauty to my day and influence my life.
Your Favorite Fan