28. Leach. Archibald Leach.
Cary Grant was born Archibald Alexander Leach in Bristol, England.
What an amazing name; I mean Archibald is great on its own, but Archibald Leach?
Also, pay attention the next time you watch Arsenic and Old Lace or His Girl Friday. It seems he couldn’t resist making a joke at his own expense.
27. He worked with the greats of his time…
Katharine Hepburn, Ingrid Bergman, James Stewart, Deborah Kerr, Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, Doris Day, Claude Rains, Ginger Rogers, Frank Sinatra, Rosalind Russell, Ralph Bellamy, and Douglas Fairbanks to name a few.
26. …including Alfred Hitchcock, who freaking loved him.
Alfred Hitchcock once said he was “the only actor I ever loved in my whole life.”
The famous director “tried to convince him to come out of retirement to star in one movie. “Don’t count on it, Hitch,” Grant said at first. Hitchcock finally enticed him…” and now we have To Catch a Thief (1955). (Evenings With Cary Grant)
In the end, they worked together on 4 films, all of which earned Academy Award nominations.
Also, I’m pretty sure they were bros.
25. He was a bit of a comic genius…
He ran away and joined a vaudeville troupe as a kid, learning how to use stilts and, apparently, getting his comic timing down to an art.
Some of his most famous and popular work was comedy including…
24. The Philadelphia Story (1940)
“You’ll never be a first class human being or a first class woman until you’ve learned to have some regard for human frailty.”
Cary Grant + Katharine Hepburn + Jimmy Stewart = WIN
Grant as C.K. Dexter Haven is rather unforgettable and the film stands at #44 on the AFI’s list of 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time. (2007)
23. Arsenic and Old Lace (1944)
“Look I probably should have told you this before but you see… well… insanity runs in my family… It practically gallops.”
This movie is my go to feel-good-and-laugh film. The screwball humor and the faces Grant makes are spectacular.
22. His Girl Friday (1940)
“Take Hitler and stick him on the funny page.”
The banter in this is non-stop and hilarious. Also, it’s free to watch on the Internet Archive.
Well, what are you waiting for?
21. I Was A Male War Bride (1949)
“My name is Rochard. You’ll think I’m a bride but actually I’m a husband. There’ll be a moment or two of confusion but, if we all keep our heads, everything will be fine.”
I think the picture says it all but just in case, yes that is Cary Grant cross-dressing and yes he’s fabulous.
It’s a somewhat bizarre, obscure film, that certainly isn’t his finest work, but oh my god Cary Grant in a skirt and wig trying to pass as a woman is hilarious.
20. Bringing Up Baby (1938)
“How can all these things happen to just one person?”
A paleontologist (Grant), a leopard, and a more than slightly crazy lady who seems determined to ruin said paleontologist’s life (Hepburn).
This movie is a true joy and once again features a rather daintily clad Cary Grant.
Plus, it’s #88 on the AFI’s 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time.
19. Besides comedy, he also had a whole spy-thriller, suspense thing going on.
Dude worked with good ol’ Hitch, remember?
18. To Catch a Thief (1955)
“It’s sort of a hobby of mine - the truth.”
17. Suspicion (1941)
“If you’re going to kill someone, do it simply.”
16. North by Northwest (1959)
” I didn’t realize you were an art collector. I thought you just collected corpses.”
North by Northwest is #55 on the AFI’s 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time and for good reason.
15. Fun Facts: He never played a villain. Ever.
According to IMDB: “The closest Grant came was the original version of Suspicion (1941), directed by Hitchcock, in which Grant’s character poisoned his wife, but the film was recut so that Grant wouldn’t be a bad guy.”
14. He gave his salary from Arsenic and Old Lace to the U.S. War Relief Fund.
Speaking of feel-good… “Cary Grant donated his entire salary, $100,000, to the U.S. War Relief Fund.”
$100,000 in 1944 = $1,319,545.98 in 2013
(Turner Classic Movies) and (DollarTimes.com)
13. And his $137,000 Philadelphia Story salary went to the British War Relief Fund.
“Hepburn approached Cary Grant for the role of Tracy’s former husband and Grant accepted on two conditions. First, that he receive top billing and second, that he be paid $137,000 which was considered an extremely generous salary at the time. Interestingly, upon receiving his salary, Grant donated the entire amount to the British War Relief Fund.” (TCM)
$137,000 in 1940 = $2,246,809.79 in 2013.
12. He was almost James Bond in Dr. No.
But he didn’t want to commit to more than one movie.
Can you see it? He might be a touch too debonair/suave/dashing…
11. He ranks #2 on the AFI Male Legend list.
In 1970 he won an Academy Award for Lifetime Achievement. Strangely enough, he never won a regular, garden variety one. (Think Leo DiCaprio)
Pretty much everybody agreed that he was awesome though. AFI ranks him just behind Humphrey Bogart in their list of “50 Greatest American Screen Legends.”
10. “My formula for living is quite simple. I get up in the morning and I go to bed at night. In between, I occupy myself as best I can.” ~ Cary Grant
9. “I think making love is the best form of exercise.” ~ Cary Grant
I’m just going to leave that quote there.
No, wait, I’m going to add this, from his third wife:
“When we were married we were fucking like rabbits.” ~ Betsy Drake