Bogie! Enough said, really!! He was everything and more the package offered. Reporters lived for his quotes .. and printed each without flaw.
Like so many .. he had an opinion on everything... and usually NOTHING was held back. Thus prompting reporters for statements varying from his collegues to his personal life. His philosophy's worked. Think of something?? Bogie had already done did it! As a quotes junky... if ever I am bored (which isn't often anymore sadly) - I can always find satisfaction in googling Bogie's quotes. Much like Samuel Goldwyn, & Chaplin's quotes ..there is NEVER a dull one!! No not one!! When it comes to Bogie, however, there appears to be one for each of lifes lessons. On the public ..."The only thing you owe the public is a good performance." On the House Un-American Activities Committee... "They'll nail anyone who ever scratched his ass during the National Anthem."
On meals ..."A hotdog at the ballpark is better than steak at the Ritz." On acting..."Acting is like sex: you either do it & don't talk about it, or you talk abou tit and don't do it. That's why I am suspicious of people who talk to much about either." On politics..."Democrat in politics, Episcopalian by upbringing, dissenter by disposition." On money..."The only good reason to have money is this: so that you can tell any SOB in the world to go to hell." "On death ..."I hate funerals. They aren't for the guy who's dead. They are for the guys who are left alive and mourning." On collegues ..."I don't approve of the John Wayne's & Gary Cooper's saying 'shucks, I aint no actor-- I am just a bridge builder or gas station attendant.' If they aren't actors... then what they hell are they getting paid for?? I have respect for my profession. I have worked hard at it." Indeed, he did. Fiercely loyal to Warner Bros. - he even commented on them ..."This studio has more suspensions than the Golden Gate Bridge." aaand even at the end, he had wits ...his reported last words were.. "I should've never switched from scotch to martinis." Now THESE are life's lessons ... take a look sometime if you need advice! Hell I do! As I have Lauren waiting in the wings .. I must now get on with Bogie's story ....
Bogie came into the world on December 25th, 1899, as Humphrey DeForest Bogart, in NYC, New York. (Although TOO MUCH speculation has been made as to his actual birthday being in January, it has been proven rubbish .. it stands as December 25th.. Merry Christmas!)
Lil Bogie was born into a family of intense wealth, and lived here, on New Yorks Upper West Side. A plaque hangs above the door. (The place is easy enough to find..) The family also held a 55-acre cottage in upper NY on Canandaigua Lake. A young imaginative Bogie (and friends), would put on a well-to-do play beside the lake. What I would've given to be a fly with a camera to capture THAT! Although imaginative ... showbiz wasn't yet in the cards for Bogie. He had aspirations to follow in the families footsteps of medicine. He had two sisters and as Bogie would recall, .."I was brought up very unsentimentally, but very straightforward. A kiss, in our family, was an event. Our parents didn't glug over my 2 sisters and me." Bogie's parents were very formal, very busy in their career, & often fought. Resulting in little emotion for the kids. Wealth begats properness! ALL that bullshit! Coming from a wealthy family, meant being educated at New York's finest. Bogie attended Delancy School until 5th grade ..at which time he was trasnsferred to Trinity School. Later he attended Phillips Acadamy, in Andover, Mass. Though an education opportunity of the finest merrit - Bogie had NO interest in school or those who taught it. "It seemed like a lotta bullshit to me," he later recalled. He was expelled from Phillips. His parents, had plans for his future, and were horribly upset with him for it.
Expelled... with pissed parents ... and a love for the sea... led Bogie to enlist in the US Navy in 1918. He would later recall... "At 18, war was great stuff. Paris! French gals! Hot DAMN!" It would almost seem Bogie had found his calling. He was a model sailor . Rumor states the Navy is where he developed his trademark lisp. Several stories surround that one. What HAS been clarified was that Bogie's lip got cut! BAD! By the time he recieved treatment from a doctor .. a scar was formed. Bogie later recalled ..."Goddamn doctor, instead of stiching it up, he screwed it up!" After his naval service - Bogie held jobs as a shipper, then a bond salesman (that is something else I'd like to have on video. Imagine Bogie knocking on your door.. <opens> ..would you like some Goddamn bonds?? Yes or no son, I aint got all day??!! I love the possibilities!!) Anyway ... whilst selling bonds - Bogie discovered a second love of being on-stage. While he'd been raised to believe actors were beneath a gentleman ... it was a love Bogie desparatly flavored well! He did, however, hate the trivial, effeminate, roles he had to play early in his career. He later referred to them as "White Pants Willie roles." Amidst the stock market crash in 1929, many actors were headed for Hollywood. While at first he enjoyed the absense of compitition on-stage .. he eventually auditioned and got his first film "The Dancing Town." A 2-reeler that was shot on a weekend budget. Whilst still performing on stage, he met and befriended, Spencer Tracey. The two became fast friends and drinking buddies. It was Spencer Tracey who first labeled him as 'Bogie.' As film goes, Bogie was hooked. He landed a job at a theater and then, landed a job with Fox Film Corp. for $750 dollars a week. He communted via trian back and forth from films in Hollywood, to the stage in New York from 1930-1935. His father died in debt in 1934 (a debt in-which Bogie eventually paid off.) His BIG BREAKOUT however, would come in 1934 as well... in the form of a play entitled "The Petrified Forest." A playright owned by a man by the name of Leslie Howard. Warner Bros. liked (and bought) screen rights to make the play into production. Those rights came with the condition that "Bogie" play the star. Warner, however, started auditioning others for the role. The star role went to, then, star Edward G. Robinson. When Bogie heard of the deal .. he cabled a note to Leslie Howard, who still held the rights to the production, in Scotland. Howard's cabled reply was not to Bogie, but to the attention of Jack Warner... "Attn Jack Warner. Insist Bogart play Mantee (the star part), or NO DEAL. L.H." And so it was! Warner caved and Bogie was cast. Bogie never forgot the effort of Leslie and even named his first daughter, Leslie .. after Leslie Howard. Warner Bros. heeded the benefit as well. Bogie stayed loyal to Warner throughout his career. To see Bogie's extensive long list of films throughout his career, go here. Cut to 1944. Bogie landed a part with a new-to-the-scene actress Lauren Bacall. "To Have and to Have Not." When the film was complete, Bogie was 44, Bacall... 19. Their chemistry was magic from the get go.
Lauren Bacall was born Betty Joan Perske, on September 16, 1924, in NYC. Her parents had money, but none to burn. They were considered middle class. Her parents divorced when Lauren was just 5. (This is especially hard on a kid at that age. Mainly due to the fact that they are too young to comprehend why the parents are acting like kids themselves. Mine divorced at age 4.) Anyhoo - they lived here... in this modest home in New York. From the beginning .. she had no doubt she was destined for the bizz of show!! Earliest memories she wanted to be a dancer. She later shifted gears and leaned into the actress gig. I think we can all agree... she was DAMN good at it!! Once outta school .. she headed into modeling. She had equisite beauty (duh, sorry) and in typical Hollywood fashion - was rewarded for it. She appeared on the cover of Harper's Bazzar. The wife of Howard Hawk saw her .. and demanded him give her a screen test. Wala ..the rest is history. Sorta. Kinda. Well?? Not exactly ... it's not history until Bogie comes into the picture, right??!! Back to that scene.... Though at first a silent romance due to the fact that both were in horrible marriages .. Bogart became a frequent norm on the set & in the career of Bacall whilst joking on set and quietly coaching her. Bogie let her steal scenes and even encouraged it. Enter a married Howard Hawks, who clearrrrly was in lust of her. Enter a fued between Willis and Bogie, annnd, Bogie wins! Jack Warner settled it. Both were divorced annnnd both married each other! As a couple goes... the two became a cultural icons!! Bogie... a member of the famed 'Rat Pack,' which he founded and icluded Frank Sinatra... and Bacall... named "Den Mother." Upon seeing the famed party aftermath in 1955 - Bacall was quoted as saying "You look like a Goddamn rat pack!" I love it!
Bogie and Bacall, truely, had it all! First living here ... then here, on Mapleton, in the posh hills of Beverly, where they lived till death did them part. According to longtime Bogie friend, famed director Richard Burton, Bogie owned a 16mm reel of the film "A Star is Born," which he would screen on his birthday every year. Bogie would sit and watch the film weeping. Finally, one year, Richard ask him "why?" After a brief silence.... "Because," Bogie explained, "I expected alot more of myself. And I'm never going to get it." In later years, Bogie confessed to Burton that he would like to play a Shakespearian role, but said, he regretted that the public would probably not take him seriously in such a role.
In the 1940's Bogie and Bacall were heavidly involved & protested the House Un-American Activities Committee. (Which was led by the ass of all assholes, J. Edgar Hoover.. the scummiest, sorriest, excuse of a federal employee I've ever seen.) Eventually - Boige and Bacall succumed to pressure and distanced themselves from the Hollywood Ten in a March 1948 magazine article penned by Bogie entitled, "I'm No Communist." Among my favorite of Bogie & Bacall moments..... Bogie was 'due to renew' his contract with Warner Bros. He was due to recieve a minimum of $5 million. When the documents were presented.. 68 pages long.. which his agent whittled down to 15 pages. Bogie noticed that the breakdown of payments added up to only $4,999,9999.25. Bogie refused to sign. Roy Obringer was the Warner Bros. attorney assigned to handle Bogie's contract. After moments of (I am sure intense) silence. Obringer reached into his pocket and put 75 cents, cold hard cash, on the table. Lauren Bacall allegedly picked it up to spend on herself.
In the late 50's, Bogie contracted cancer. of the esophagus. He almost never spoke of it and refused to see a doctor until January of 1956, and by then removal of his esophagus, two lymph nodes and a rib was too little, too late. Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy came to see him. Bogart was too weak to walk up and down stairs. He tried to joke about it: "Put me in the dumbwaiter and I'll ride down to the first floor in style.
Hepburn has described the last time she and Spencer Tracy saw Bogart: "Spence patted him on the shoulder and said, 'Goodnight, Bogie.' Bogie turned his eyes to Spence very quietly and with a sweet smile covered Spence's hand with his own and said, 'Goodbye, Spence.' Spence's heart stood still. He understood."
Bogart had just turned 57 and weighed only 80 pounds (36 kg) when he died on January 14, 1957 after falling into a coma. He died in Hollywood. His funeral was held at All Saints Episcopal Church with musical selections played from Bogart's favorite composers, Johann Sebastian Bach and Claude Debussy. Bacall had asked Spencer Tracy to give the eulogy but Tracy was too upset. John Huston gave the eulogy instead, and reminded the gathered mourners that while Bogart's life had ended far too soon, it had been a rich one. Huston said: "He is quite irreplaceable. There will never be another like him."
His cremated remains are interred in Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery, Glendale, California. Interred with him is a small silver whistle, which he had given to his future wife, Lauren Bacall, before they married. In reference to their first movie together, it was inscribed: "You know how to whistle. Just put your lips together and blow. Whistle should you need anything."
Bacall continued a nice film career after Bogie. She worked until 2004, when her health no longer allowed. She now has returned to her (and Bogie's) home of NYC, and lives in these condos in NYC.
"The trouble with the world is .. it's always one drink behind..Bogie"