Cary Grant is a one of the most legendary actors in Hollywood history. There was no one like him before and there will be no one like him ever again. His presence on screen is something very few actors have. In one scene, he can make you laugh hysterically and another he can make you cry. In his era, no actor can charm you the way Cary Grant did. The best part about it was that it was so effortless. It didn't even look like he was trying. In this new series on The Movie Nerds, we take a look at some of the most influential actors and actresses in film history. We start with the legendary Cary Grant.
Cary Grant was not born as Cary Grant. He was born as Archie Leach on January 18, 1904 in Bristol, England. Before he became a big Hollywood star, he was in the Vaudeville group known as The Pender Troupe. The Pender Troupe was Grant's introduction to performing. Shortly after leaving the group, Grant started to attract Hollywood's attention. He made his film debut in This is the Night (1932). Grant's presence was immediately seen and Hollywood wanted more. He then starred in screwball comedies with the likes of Jean Arthur, Katharine Hepburn, and Rosalind Russell. His status as a leading man only grew over time and his films are some of the best of all time.
I saw Cary Grant for the first time in The Philadelphia Story with James Stewart and Katharine Hepburn. I was on a Jimmy Stewart binge at the time because I was obsessed with his acting. Going into the film, I wanted to focus on Stewart's performance but I found myself watching Grant's performance too. In my mind, I thought who is this guy. After that film, I was curious to check out more of his work. This led me to watch Charade with him and Audrey Hepburn. In that film, Grant does it all. He is the action star, charming man, comedic genius, and fantastic actor.
Today Hollywood's King of Charm is George Clooney but Clooney's influence has come from Cary Grant. Grant's charm in his films is legendary. There's a famous quote that says "Men want to be Cary Grant and women want to be with him." That quote perfectly describes Cary Grant. His witty one liners are legendary and his presence on screen will never be seen again.
Grant has worked with many legends but one sticks out in my mind. His collaborations with Alfred Hitchcock are legendary. Their best film together is their last collaboration North by Northwest. Grant plays advertising executive Roger Thornhill who mistakenly is wanted by the American government. That film has it all. It has great suspense, action, acting, and romance with Eva Marie Saint. The film also has one of the most famous scenes in film history with Roger getting chased by the airplane. That shot alone is worth watching the film. In total Grant and Hitchcock made 4 films together. Each one of those films are special in their own way. They capture the beauty of cinema and what films should be.
Grant's legacy will be live on forever. His movies are some of the best Hollywood has ever seen. His versatility as an actor is greatly underappreciated. The way he can fit in any role is remarkable. He can play the hero, the villain, the comedian, the action star, and the suave James Bond type. Because of that, Cary Grant is one of the best movie stars Hollywood has ever seen.
What is you opinion of Cary Grant? Let us know in the comments below.