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Cary Grant

Cary Grant (born Archibald Alec Leach; January 18, 1904 – November 29, 1986) was an Anglo-American actor, known as one of classic Hollywood's definitive leading men. He began a career in Hollywood in the early 1930s, and became known for his transatlantic accent, debonair demeanor, light-hearted approach to acting, and sense of comic timing. He became an American citizen in 1942.

Born in Horfield, Bristol, England Grant became attracted to theatre at a young age, and began performing with a troupe known as "The Penders" from the age of six. After attending Bishop Road Primary School and Fairfield Grammar School in Bristol, he toured the country as a stage performer, and decided to stay in New York City after a performance there. He established a name for himself in vaudeville in the 1920s and toured the United States before moving to Hollywood in the early 1930s. He initially appeared in crime films or dramas such as Blonde Venus (1932) and She Done Him Wrong (1933), but later gained renown for his appearances in romantic comedy and screwball comedy films such as The Awful Truth (1937), Bringing Up Baby (1938), His Girl Friday (1940) and The Philadelphia Story (1940). Along with the later Arsenic and Old Lace (1944) and I Was a Male War Bride (1949), these films are frequently cited as among the all-time great comedy films. Having established himself as a major Hollywood star, he was nominated once for the Academy Award for Best Actor, for Penny Serenade (1941.

In the 1940s and 1950s, Grant forged a working relationship with the director Alfred Hitchcock, appearing in films such as Suspicion (1941), Notorious (1946), To Catch a Thief (1955) and North by Northwest (1959). Hitchcock admired Grant and considered him to have been the only actor that he had ever loved working with. Towards the end of his film career, Grant was praised by critics as a romantic leading man, and received five Golden Globe Award for Best Actor nominations, including Indiscreet (1958) with Ingrid Bergman, That Touch of Mink (1962) with Doris Day, and Charade (1963) with Audrey Hepburn. He is remembered by critics for his unusually broad appeal, as a handsome, suave actor who did not take himself too seriously, possessing the ability to play with his own dignity in comedies without sacrificing it entirely. His comic timing and delivery made Grant what Premiere magazine considers to have been "quite simply, the funniest actor cinema has ever produced".

Grant was married five times; three of his marriages were elopements with actresses—Virginia Cherrill (1934–1935), Betsy Drake (1949–1962) and Dyan Cannon (1965–1968). He has one daughter with Cannon, Jennifer Grant (born 1966). After his retirement from film acting in 1966, Grant pursued numerous business interests, representing cosmetics firm Fabergé, and sitting on the board of MGM and others. He was presented with an Honorary Oscar by his friend Frank Sinatra at the 42nd Academy Awards in 1970, and in 1981, he was accorded the Kennedy Center Honors. In 1999, the American Film Institute named Grant the second greatest male star of Golden Age Hollywood cinema.



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