Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Happy Birthday, Paul Henreid!!
Today marks the 104th birthday of the suave, debonair, Austrian-born Paul Henreid (January 10, 1908-March 29, 1992)
While Paul Henreid is not one of my top 20 favorite actors, I definitely do like him. That European accent of his is totally delightful! What makes him stand out among all other actors (except for Claude Rains), is the fact that he stars in my two all-time favorite movies---Now, Voyager and Casablanca.
Now, Voyager (reviewed HERE), in which Henreid stars with Bette Davis, is my absolute favorite movie of all-time. I totally love that movie and try to watch it two or three times a year. In that film, he has this delightful habit of putting two cigarettes in his mouth, lighting them both, then handing one to Bette's character. While not a smoker, I find that action totally romantic. I learned that doing that was a longtime habit Mr. Henreid and his wife, Lisl, had, and although it wasn't part of the script, he just naturally did it. (Link to a YouTube video of a Now, Voyager scene where he does that...HERE)
Casablanca, in which Henreid is the supporting player to Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, is my #2 movie of all-time. Interestingly, I saw that movie way back when I was about 19 years old...and I absolutely hated it. (Not sure how I saw it since my family didn't have cable or a VHS player back in 1980.) However, when I watched the film as a more mature adult, I totally fell in love with it.
So, on this his 104th birthday, here's to you, Paul Henreid! You are the common thread in my two most beloved movies! (Claude Rains is a common thread as well, but it's not his birthday.) Thanks for beautifying my life by being part of those two great films!!