January 18, 2009

Happy Birthday, Archie Leach!

Posted in Birthday, Cary Grant, Classic Film at 10:14 pm by aiwish472

I think it was in May when I first saw Bringing Up Baby. Maybe it was June.  It’s strange that I don’t remember, since Bringing Up Baby was a lot of firsts for me.  To start, it was my first screwball comedy – every old movie I’d watched before then was a film noir.  I’m grateful for that. Screwball comedies are one of my favorite genres of movies.  It was also my first movie with Katharine Hepburn.  I mean, that’s pretty damn important, since Katharine Hepburn is very important. (Yay Katie!) And then there was Katie’s co-star, the man playing David.  It was my first movie of his, too.

HAYYY.

So there was this guy and he talked kind of strange and he had a round face and despite his comedic act, he was positively charming and entertaining.

I figured out his name and went on a search for more of his movies.  The next one I saw was Notorious, a Hitchcock with film-noir flair – the complete opposite style of Bringing Up Baby, but a great performance by him. (I watched that today in his honor.  It’s my favorite movie.)

Then came Holiday and The Philadelphia Story and Arsenic and Old Lace and Indiscreet and Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House and North By Northwest and a few others…

"Everyone wants to be Cary Grant. Even I want to be Cary Grant."

The more I saw of him, the more I respected him. For his stellar acting, his undeniable class, his great humor.  For whatever performance I think is his best, he’d probably want to improve on it.  But that’s okay. It’s just an example of what a kind, humble, down-to-earth guy he was.  If there is anyone in this world who doesn’t like him, well… I’m just at a loss for words.  He’s just one of those actors who it seems impossible to dislike.

It got to the point where I admired him so much that I could say, “yeah. He is my favorite actor.”

That’s why I named my stuffed parrot after him. The parrot is Parry Grant.

The actor is Cary Grant. Real name: Archibald Leach.

Sadly, he’s not with us today to celebrate his 104th birthday. But he lives. He lives in his movies, his quotes, his photographs…

Happy Birthday, Cary.

Favorite picture ever.

Favorite picture ever.

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