BIRTH: August 31, 1897
DEATH: April 14, 1975
AGED: 77 yrs
DIED FROM: Prostrate Cancer
REAL NAME: Ernest Frederick McIntyre Bickel- his mom’s last name was Marcher and he wanted a better name plus he believed that his lucky number was 12 so he dropped the K from Frederick and the “er” from Marcher to get his new name.
MARRIED: Twice- Ellis Baker(1921-1927) and actress Florence Eldridge 1927-1975(his death)
AFFAIRS: Many as he was a real lech often grabbing women by their butt or breast right in front of cast and crew. Shelley Winters said that he was a great actor for emoting so much sadness on his face while grabbing her ass. Evelyn Veneble punched him in the face after he grabbed her breast. Claudette Colbert, Olivia DeHavilland etc…would slap him for his groping. Greta Garbo, knowing his reputation, wore garlic inside her clothing and munched on it to put him off. My favourite is what Carole Lombard did…when he sat beside her he placed his hand under her skirt and as his hand crept up closer he got a rude shock when he touched a dildo! Hahahaaa. He never touched her again!! Sylvia Sidney acted with him more than once but never took his talk about her boobs or ass seriously and laughed it off thinking he was just joking. I think he struck out more than he got action but…still reprehensible.
CHILDREN: 2 kids-adopted
OSCAR WINS: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde-1931and Best Years Of Their Lives-1946 for Best Actor
OSCAR NOMINATIONS: Royal Family Of Broadway-1930; A Star Is Born-1937; Death Of A Salesman-1951
TALENT: his acting, to be honest.
KNOWN FOR: his prolific letter writing.
This is a man who was well loved by his children who found him loving, thoughtful and fun and, yet, today, his career would be done because of his lecherous ways with so many women. His excellent acting is now overshadowed by the most recent revelations about his asshole behaviour…oops, I swore but he deserved all he got from his many co-stars. He served in WW1 and, afterwards, was heading to become a banker but, listening to his landlady, a former actress, talk about her times on the stage made him change his mind and become an actor. He had great diction and, with his good looks, became an early matinee idol adept at drama and comedy winning his first Oscar for a horror movie. In fact, the make up, was so severe that he ended up in the hospital for 3 weeks and he was lucky that he suffered no permanent scars.
His wife, an acclaimed actress in her own right, often worked with him on the stage but, when they appeared in a real stinker, he actually took out an apology in the papers for the lousy play. In a weird way, he was protective of her ( yeah…I know how stupid that sounds) and often wanted her to act opposite him in movies as well the theatre. For some reason, she never left him even though she knew all about him but it could be the times back then.
He was able to go from romantic leads into character roles with ease and his acting prowess was noted by Marlon Brando and William Holden as an inspiration. I do still really enjoy watching his films especially one of my favourites, “The Best Years of Our Lives.”
1. Merrily We Go To Hell-1932
2. Design For Living-1933
3. Death Takes a Holiday-1934
4. The Barretts Of Wimpole Street-1934
5. Les Miserables-1935
6. Anna Karenina-1935
7. The Dark Angel-1935
8. Nothing Sacred-1937
9. I Married An Witch-1942
10. Inherit The Wind-1960