Cary Grant: The Charismatic Leading Man

Hollywood has always been the epitome of glitz and glamor, and it has created a number of legendary personalities throughout the years. While most movie fans today are crazy about superstars such as Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise, and Johnny Depp; fans of old movies have their own objects of admiration too. During the early years of Hollywood, one actor was particularly admired for his great acting performances as well as his fascinating personality and style. His name was Cary Grant.

Cary Grant was born in Bristol, England on the 18th of January, 1904 with the name Archibald Alec Leach. He was the only child of Elias Leach and Elsie Maria Kingdom. When he was nine, his mother suffered from extreme depression because of the loss of a child, and she was admitted to a mental facility. In 1918, he was expelled from Fairfield Grammar School, and he decided to join the Bob Pender Stage Troupe. He toured around the US as a stilt walker, and then he spent some time performing in theaters before he went to Hollywood.

In 1931, he joined Paramount Pictures where he was given the screen name “Cary Grant”. This was the start of his illustrious career. He had charming looks and a captivating smile that could melt the hearts of single ladies and inspire envy in men. Classy and suave, he was the just the guy that Ian Fleming had in mind when he created James Bond. However, Grant would never play Bond and the role would instead go to Sean Connery. Grant starred in a mix of comedy and romance movies, which contributed to his status as a heartthrob. When his contract with Paramount ended in 1937, he decided to become a freelance actor so that he could choose his scripts. He was nominated for the Best Actor award in the 1941 and 1944 Academy Awards for Penny Serenade and None But The Lonely Heart. In 1950, he decided to start his own production company, and he got Universal Studios to distribute his films. Although he never won an Oscar for acting, he was given an honorary Oscar in the year 1970. Throughout his career as an actor, he had the privilege of co-starring with legendary female film icons such as Marlene Dietrich, Mae West, Katharine Hepburn, Irene Dunne, Ingrid Bergman, Grace Kelly, Audrey Hepburn, and Doris Day. When Grant retired from the movies, he worked at Fabergé as a member of the board of directors.

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Grant’s personal life was just as colorful as his movies; he had five marriages, and one of them resulted in his only child, Jennifer Grant. Like other actors, he also meddled with drugs, and he was accused of being a homosexual. There were also a lot of rumors that he was dating other prominent actresses. He was given an award by King George VI in 1947 for helping the British charities during the war. He was preparing for a show in Iowa when he suffered cerebral hemorrhage and died on the night of November 29, 1986. In 1999, the American Film Institute named Cary Grant the second greatest American male actor of all time, just behind Humphrey Bogart.

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