Humphrey DeForest Bogart was born in New York City, New York, to Maud Humphrey, a famed magazine illustrator and suffragette, and Belmont DeForest Bogart, a moderately wealthy surgeon (who was secretly addicted to opium). Bogart was educated at Trinity School, NYC, and was sent to Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, in preparation for medical studies at Yale. He was expelled from Phillips and joined the U.S. Naval Reserve. From 1920 to 1922, he managed a stage company owned by family friend William A. Brady (the father of actress Alice Brady), performing a variety of tasks at Brady’s film studio in New York. He then began regular stage performances. Alexander Woollcott described his acting in a 1922 play as inadequate. In 1930, he gained a contract with Fox, his feature film debut in a ten-minute short, Broadway’s Like That (1930), co-starring Ruth Etting and Joan Blondell. Fox released him after two years. After five years of stage and minor film roles, he had his breakthrough role in The Petrified Forest (1936) from Warner Bros. He won the part over Edward G. Robinson only after the star, Leslie Howard, threatened Warner Bros. that he would quit unless Bogart was given the key role of Duke Mantee, which he had played in the Broadway production with Howard. The film was a major success and led to a long-term contract with Warner Bros. From 1936 to 1940, Bogart appeared in 28 films, usually as a gangster, twice in Westerns and even a horror film. His landmark year was 1941 (often capitalizing on parts George Raft had stupidly rejected) with roles in classics such as High Sierra (1941) and as Sam Spade in one of his most fondly remembered films, The Maltese Falcon (1941). These were followed by Casablanca (1942), The Big Sleep (1946), and Key Largo (1948). Bogart, despite his erratic education, was incredibly well-read and he favored writers and intellectuals within his small circle of friends. In 1947, he joined wife Lauren Bacall and other actors protesting the House Un-American Activities Committee witch hunts. He also formed his own production company, and the next year made The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948). Bogie won the best actor Academy Award for The African Queen (1951) and was nominated for Casablanca (1942) and as Captain Queeg in The Caine Mutiny (1954), a film made when he was already seriously ill. He died in his sleep at his Hollywood home following surgeries and a battle with throat cancer.
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