Becoming Cary Grant (2017) Movie Script

the Academy, in order to
express its appreciation
for one of its members
for a unique screen career, has
voted an Oscar to Mr. Cary Grant
for sheer brilliance in the
acting business.
No one's brought more pleasure
to more people for as many
years as Cary has, and no one
has done more things well,
from light comedy to strong
drama, and made it look easier.
No one has been more admired
and loved by his fellow actors,
for skill, for finesse,
for subtlety, charm,
and for being Cary Grant.
Hello there!
Tell me, why are you
so good to me?
Shall I climb up
and tell you why?
(projector clicking)
NARRATOR: Cary Grant was
a very private man.
He only rarely spoke
to the media.
This film draws on his
unpublished autobiography
and extracts from interviews,
as well as little-known footage
he shot with his own camera.
He had a filmmaker's eye, and
his often very personal images
offer a window
into his inner world.
In the late 1950s,
at the height of his career
and hitting mid-life,
he faced an existential crisis.
(airplane engine whirring)
"For many years, I have
cautiously peered from behind
the face of a man
known as Cary Grant.
The protection of that facade
was both an advantage
and a disadvantage.
If I couldn't see out,
how could anybody see in?
All my life, I've been
going around in a fog.
You're just a bunch of molecules
until you know who you are.
You spend your time getting
to be a big Hollywood actor,
but then what?
All my life, I've been
searching for peace of mind.
I wanted to rid myself
of all my hypocrisies."
Now, Esther, don't you like
the way I'm doing this?
"It was a time when people were
attempting to find something
inside of themselves that
they felt they lacked.
I was so confused when I first
started seeing Dr. Hartman.
I'd explored yoga, hypnotism,
and mysticism.
Nothing really seemed to
give me what I wanted
until this LSD treatment.
WOMAN: One of the first things
you did when you got there
is you selected your music.
And the music would play,
whatever your music was,
and then you would gradually
begin going with it,
if you would.
This reality started
disappearing in another kind of
unconscious mind, or whatever.
We used to call it fusion.
Apparently, the idea was that
you would fuse with the sort of
universal concept of the world
and yourself in the world.
Some people found that very
difficult and didn't do it
at all and were quite resistant
or alarmed by it.
Cary was not.
Cary took to it instantly.
I don't recall ever being
at the pool with him,
or at a beach or anything,
I don't recall any of that.
The thing I think it's important
to remember about Cary, always,
is contained in that wonderful
thing he said about himself.
He said, "Everybody
wants to be Cary Grant.
Even I want to be Cary Grant."
And everybody laughed and
thought that was really funny.
But, for me,
that's the crux of Cary.
Cary invented himself.
I wonder if I could have just
a little bit more of your smile.
Oh, no, not at this hour
of the morning.
JUDY: Cary did a masterful job
of it, and, of course, it worked
superbly on screen
and in life, socially.
But he got to that place at 52,
without looking back
at what he had experienced as a
child, you know, and a teenager,
which must have had terrible
scars on him emotionally.
And the fact that the LSD
allowed him to open that
universe up and examine it and
put that into context with
the Cary Grant he had become,
was an extraordinary experience,
which is, I think, why he was so
-- you know, always spoke with
such respect about his
experience with LSD.
The sessions were scheduled
for five hours each,
and they were scheduled
once a week.
And then there were some
after-effects of the chemicals
that would stay with you
for a few hours afterwards.
So it was virtually a day
that you'd have to
give up for that.
"The action of the chemical
releases the subconscious so
that you can see what transpires
in the depths of your mind."
(waves crashing)
"During therapy, I passed
through seas of horrifying and
happy sights, through a montage
of intense love and hate,
a mosaic of past impressions
assembling and reassembling."
(water bubbling)
(baby crying)
(dog barking)
"I don't know what
I learned about love.
It took a long time for me to
even try to understand love.
I learned manners
from my parents.
They taught me to be
neat and organized,
which I am to this day.
I was born in Bristol
in a suburban house,
which, lacking modern
heating conveniences,
kept only one step
ahead of freezing.
(clock ticking)
My mother was a delicate
black-haired beauty
with olive skin,
frail and feminine.
What isn't apparent in the
photograph is the extent
of her strength and
her will to control.
My parents had another boy,
born before I was.
My mother accidentally closed
the door on his thumb.
He developed gangrene and died,
and she blamed herself
for the rest of her life.
She wasn't a happy woman.
I wasn't a happy child...
because my mother tried
to smother me with care.
She kept me far too long in
baby dresses and curls,
and perhaps, for a while,
I wasn't sure whether
I was a boy or a girl."
Think it matches?
Ask the gentleman to come in.
MAN: Clearly, his mother
was very aspirational.
She made sure that
he had piano lessons,
that he learned
good table manners,
that he said please
and thank you.
She punished him when he did
anything wrong at the table.
She was trying to make him
into the perfect gentleman
that he became in later life.
What do you think?
Fits rather well.
But are you sure it's what
you want, Dr. Fulton?
Well, tell me, do they ever
wear trousers to match?
Oh, very seldom.
Usually gray flannels.
Oh, these socks ought
to go well with it.
MARK: My father was an
incredibly smart dresser.
He apparently gave Cary --
I should say he gave Archie --
one piece of advice about
dressing that Archie and Cary
always remembered, which was,
if you're only going to have
one suit, make it a good suit.
My father was a handsome tallish
man with a fancy mustache.
He earned his money pressing
suits for a clothing
manufacturer, but progressed
in that firm too slowly
to satisfy my mother's dreams.
(kids laughing and playing)
(kids laughing and playing)
The relationship between
my mother and father
seemed to grow unhappier.
I came home from school one day,
and mother was gone.
My cousins told me
that she had gone to
a local seaside resort.
It seemed rather unusual, but
I accepted it as one of those
unaccountable things
that grownups do.
However, the weeks went by
and there was no further
explanation of mother's absence,
and it gradually dawned on me
that perhaps she wasn't
coming back at all.
There was a void in my life,
a sadness of spirit that
affected everything I did.
I always felt my mother
rejected me.
MARK: In some of the very
early interviews,
when he's still Archie Leach
on Broadway,
he makes reference to
his mother being dead.
When she's gone, he moved
to a more working class
neighborhood of Bristol
to live with his
paternal grandmother.
This is the point at which
the father went to South Hampton
to start his new family, and so
he's left there on his own.
He remembers being left to
fend for himself in an unheated
house, being hungry, so this
had a terrible impact on him.
You can imagine an 11-year-old
boy not knowing
why his mother had left,
where she'd gone,
why she hadn't said goodbye,
it would be devastating.
And so he would have trust
issues with women
for many, many years.
Ha, ha, ha.
MARK: His first two marriages,
for example, seemed to be cases
of him falling very much in love
with Virginia Cherrill,
and then with Barbara Hutton,
but then not quite
trusting them, not trusting
them to love him
and not trusting them
not to leave him.
Won't you say
Don't you like it?
I don't know.
I don't know whether
I like it or not.
"I regularly haunted
the Bristol wharfs.
I sat alone for hours watching
the ships come and go,
sailing with them to far places
on the tide of my imagination.
Trying to release myself
from the emotional tensions
which disarranged my thoughts.
Yet, coincidentally,
at such a dispirited time,
my science teacher's assistant,
an electrician,
invited me to
the Bristol Hippodrome,
in which he had installed
the lighting system."
25 of the boys
feeling gay and happy
Some of them married
and some of them not
All of them merry parties
Then without a warning to
their dame a heavy shot...
"The matinee was in full swing
when I arrived backstage,
and there I suddenly found
myself in a dazzling land
of smiling, jostling people
wearing and not wearing
all sorts of costumes,
and that's when I knew.
They happily traveled
and toured.
They were classless,
cheerful, and carefree."
You know me, fellas,
when things get tough,
when I feel a worry coming on,
you know what I do.
There, and then
the worries are over.
MAN: The Pender Troupe was a
very successful group of
acrobats, and they used to
play the Hippodrome.
In 1918, when he was
14 years old,
he hit the road with
this acrobatic troupe.
The boys became his brothers
and the Penders were like
parents to him.
When Bob Pender got a job
in New York for the troupe,
they all went out there
As long as he was Archie Leach,
he never came back to Bristol,
as if there was nothing
to come back for.
(ship horn blaring)
"Manhattan Island, that skyline,
there it was.
I was actually there.
Off we scurried to present
ourselves at the Hippodrome
on 6th Avenue.
It contained a revolving stage
a city block wide, on which
appeared the most renowned and
spectacular acts of the day."
MARK: After they had been there
for two years, Bob Pender
decided to go back to England,
and Archie didn't want to go.
There's incredible courage in
There's incredible ambition in
But there's also just
MAN: He was 18 years old and on
his own in a new country.
After years of struggle, he was
cast in a series of Broadway
musicals, always in the role
of the dashing leading man,
and over and over again,
the reviews of the shows say,
Archie Leach is so handsome,
sometimes they say too handsome,
but he can't sing.
"In the late 1920s, I tried
to emulate many people who
seemed, although they too were
self-educated in most cases,
to have reached a certain
strata in life
that I didn't belong to."
Boy, what a great day
to have good eyesight.
You better lay off
these, Goldie.
MARK: He made a test for
Paramount called "Singapore Sue"
in 1931, in which he plays
an American sailor.
Hey, sprechen
sie English?
Well, I sprechen sie
Chinese to you.
You and me, we chop suey
through the park.
We chow mein.
MARK: So at this point he had
been on the stage for many years
and he was used to projecting
his voice and doing facial
expressions for the back of
the top circle,
and he's doing that in the film,
and it simply doesn't come
across very well.
Look at this.
Okay, pal.
Hey, you and me
ought to get together...
(waves crashing)
"After having worked steadily
for more than three years,
I decided to take a vacation.
I set out for California,
the land of clear sunshine
and palm trees."
MARK: So he went to
Hollywood on his own.
And he had contacts there,
and he used those contacts
to get another screen test.
It apparently went very well,
because he not only got
a contract with Paramount, he
got a contract at $350 a week,
which was pretty good
money in 1932.
"You see the Paramount hierarchy
said I couldn't be
Archie Leach, nobody would
pay to see Archie Leach.
I'd played a character called
Cary Lockwood on Broadway,
so I said, "Why can't
I be Cary Lockwood?"
But there already was
a Lockwood in the business.
The following day, the lawyers
began preparing the contract.
From my younger man's
point of view, it promised
fame and fulfillment,
stardom and serenity.
I couldn't know then that
although I would gain the fame
of an actor, and the stardom,
such as it is, I would still
be seeking fulfillment and
serenity 30 years later."
Honey, I wonder if you realize
just how much you mean to me.
I've never been
so happy in my life.
You mean that?
I guess love is
a wonderful thing.
I've heard it
highly praised.
No one could be
half as nice you
MARK: Paramount cast him
in five or six films a year
for the first few years, and
you can see him getting better
and better and better.
The problem is the Paramount
roles are very flat.
He's simply good looking.
He's a bit of jewelry for
their big leading ladies,
for Marlene Dietrich,
for Mae West, for Kay Francis,
and others.
Maybe I ain't got no soul.
Oh, yes, you have, but you
keep it hidden under a mask.
You'll wake up and
find it sometime.
Haven't you ever met a man
that could make you happy?
Sure, lots of times.
(thunder crashing)
ANNOUNCER: As time went on,
in addition to Malibu,
many of the stars built big
homes further down the beach.
Sounds like Cary's
having a party.
"Surrounded by all sorts
of attractive girls,
I was never able to fully
communicate with them.
Most of the women with whom
I formed attachments
eventually made it
evident that I was,
from their point of view,
If I'd paid more attention
I might have found
contentment in marriage.
Looking back, it doesn't seem
possible that I was married,
and, alas, divorced three times.
My first wife was Virginia
Cherrill, the beautiful girl
who made such an impression
as the blind heroine
in Charlie Chaplain's
"City Lights."
(ship horn blaring)
MARK: Cary Grant and Virginia
Cherrill went to Bristol
in autumn of 1933 for Cary Grant
to show Virginia Cherrill
where he had grown up.
I don't think that he had
been back to Bristol,
or even to England,
throughout the 1920s,
and he arrives very much
as the film star.
They were in limousines.
They were dressed to the nines,
and they drive up to
the father's house and make
a huge show of themselves
and their wealth and success.
And clearly, he wanted to do
that, and needed to do that.
"I doubt if either of us was
capable of relaxing sufficiently
to trust the happiness
we might have had.
My possessiveness and fear
of losing her brought about
the very condition it feared,
the loss of her."
What's the matter
with you, Bones,
don't you think
it's fine?
Why, to be in an orchard with
the singing and the laughing
and the dancing and the wine
and the smell of the wet grass,
and all in the moonlight.
MARK: It's not until 1935, when
he's on a loan out to RKO,
that he plays in a film called
"Sylvia Scarlet,"
where George Cukor,
a very fine director,
saw, in Cary Grant,
something of the cockney.
He got wise to his little game,
passed the information
on to a customs officer.
Oh, recognizing you
as a man of public spirit,
chocks his moniker on your
baggage, and there you are,
soon it'll be in cargo
duty free.
The old sparklers.
MARK: It's not the glamorous
Cary Grant, but, nevertheless,
he demonstrated he could
act on screen,
and from that point onward,
his career really takes off.
"Because he didn't know who
the character was, George Cukor
let me play it the way I thought
it should be played.
In a manner of speaking,
that was my breakthrough.
It permitted me to play
a character I know."
Oh, there's plenty of room
for both of us here.
Come on, get your pajamas.
Let's get curled up.
But, uh --
But -- but -- but what?
But I'm afraid
I'll snore.
I'll cure you of that.
I'll give you a clump on the
head every time I hear you.
Yeah, but I kick too.
Oh, never mind
about that...
(clock ticking)
"My father died in 1935
of what was medically recorded
as extreme toxicity,
liver disease.
My own life at the
time of his death
was following a similar pattern.
My first wife, Virginia
Cherrill, was divorcing me.
LSD made me realize
I was killing my mother
through my relationships
with other women.
I was punishing them for
what she had done to me.
I was making the mistake
of thinking that
each of my wives was my mother.
Once you realize that you
have all things inside you,
love and hate alike,
and you learn to accept them,
then you can use your love
to exhaust your hate.
That power is inside you,
but it can be assimilated
into your power to love.
That moment when your conscious
meets your subconscious
is a hell of a wrench.
You feel the whole top
of your head lifting off."
(wind rumbling)
MARK: It seems likely that
his father never told him
where his mother was,
that his father couldn't admit
after all those years that
his mother was still alive.
So this is the admissions book
from the Bristol Lunatic Asylum,
as it was called then.
And we have it open to the page
where Archie Leach's mother,
Elsie, is being committed.
This is the day
that she was committed,
February the 3rd, 1915.
And it has her diagnosis here,
that she has a form of insanity
called mania, and below that is
"facts communicated by others,"
come from her husband.
She's being committed on his
testimony alone it seems.
So Elias Leach is saying his
wife, Elsie, has been queer
in her head for some months
and thinks that several women
are concealed in the house and
they put poison in her food.
She hears voices
through the wall
and thinks she's being watched.
It says she's not
a danger to others,
and it says that she's
not a danger to herself,
and yet she's being
put into the asylum,
and we know that she's going to
stay there for 20 years.
When I first came upon the book,
I was simply struck by
how little was involved in
having someone committed;
that someone could go into
the asylum on the testimony
of their husband alone.
And there's also something
slightly disturbing in that
we know that the husband had
left Bristol shortly after this
and went to South Hampton
to live with another woman,
and had a child
with another woman.
He would have been 11 years old
when he last saw his mother.
When he saw her again,
he was 30 years old, maybe 31.
There was no indication
that she had ever heard
of Cary Grant, because the way
the meeting has been described,
he had to convince her who
he was, and she said to him,
"Archie, is that really you?"
He arranged for her to
come out of the hospital,
and he set up a fund for her,
administered by lawyers
in London, so that she would
always be taken care of.
And he came to see her
as often as he could.
Oh, we're going to Wall Street
to see Old Man Topper
Ironbound Topper
That moss-covered Topper
I promise to be at this bank
at the annual meeting
Of the board of directors
at 10:30 in the morning
Too many words, honey.
That's what I thought.
MAN: No, no, no, that's
another vaudeville actor
who went into motion pictures,
Cary Grant.
Come on,
the music's swell.
I said the music's swell!
Can't hear you,
they're playing music.
That's what I said.
MARK: By the end of 1936, he's
made over two dozen films,
and his career takes off
because he leaves Paramount.
Weather clear,
track fast.
I made it.
MARK: So he becomes
an independent,
which is very rare at the time.
And by making those
sorts of individual deals,
he's able to choose his roles.
Come on.
Come on, boy, up.
That a boy.
So where's momma?
MARK: And because he's very
successful at that,
the first two films are
his biggest successes,
"Topper" and "The Awful Truth"
in 1937.
Nothing's going to
hurt me anymore.
Take it.
(dog barking)
You wouldn't mind
if I looked around?
You know, your husband is not
like the average American man.
He has more the
continental mind, yes?
Yeah, that's right,
I have a continental mind,
where you have an eggnog.
Oh, thank you.
MARK: What was different about
"The Awful Truth," for him,
was that Leo McCarey, a great
comic director, shaped his
screen persona, told him how to
hold himself, helped him develop
his comic timing, but also gave
him a kind of role model,
because Leo McCarey was himself
a very handsome,
dashing, ladies' man.
My, isn't this cozy?
MARK: It was a screen persona
that gave him a starting point
as to how to play a carefree,
debonair, urbane,
modern gentleman.
Gentlemen in movies before this
tended to be upper class.
They were stuffy.
Cary Grant's screen persona
is very democratic,
in the sense that you can
still hear and see
some of working-class Archie
in him.
MARK: Something anyone
can aspire to.
Oh, I --
Oh, so sorry!
Oh, hello.
You're sitting
on your hat.
You lied to me.
No. Well, I did.
Tell me a ridiculous
story about a leopard.
I didn't tell you a ridiculous
story, I have a leopard.
Well where is
the leopard?
It's right in there.
I don't believe
you, Susan.
But you have
to believe me.
I've been a victim of your
unbridled imagination once more!
Susan, we settled that question
once and for all.
But what about my leopard?
Hmm, that's your problem.
It's not all my problem.
(leopard growling)
Susan, Susan?
Susan, don't go away,
I've got the leopard.
DAVID: Something happens,
I think, in the late '30s
and Cukor is a part of it,
Leo McCarey,
but I think Hawks
is the key figure.
He senses some kind of
fascinating insecurity in Grant
that can carry him beyond
the sort of genre conventions
of attractive male acting.
It's almost as if Hawks,
particularly, says to himself,
this is a very strange guy.
This is not a
straightforward American,
but Grant is never American.
He's not English.
He's something else in between,
and it's as if he
and a few filmmakers saw this
and felt a confidence about it
and says we can go with this.
Who are you?
Who are you?
Well who are you?
What do you want?
Well who are you?
I don't know.
I'm not quite
myself today.
Well you look perfectly
idiotic in those clothes.
These aren't my clothes.
Well, why are you
wearing these clothes?
Because I just went gay
all of a sudden.
DAVID: It just develops,
I think, over the years,
and over the many films.
And, of course, by now,
it's what lies beneath
the inescapable but still very
unproven and uncertain sense
of his own sexuality, because
this is clearly a man
who appealed to men and women
equally on screen.
My intercostal
Your what?
My bone, it's rare,
it's precious!
What did you
do with it?
The bone?
Where did you
hide the bone?
No David, no,
not that way, no.
Now, George,
we're not angry, no.
David and Susan
need that bone.
It's a nasty old bone.
It's hundreds
of years old.
That's David's bone.
DAVID: I don't know the answer
to Grant's own life,
but to look back on it now,
there's no question that
this is a man who is exploring a
breakdown of gender safeguards.
You know, he's somewhere else.
He's placeless.
It's just like his social
status, his nationality status,
you can't pin him down.
I think he felt he was
there alone on the edge,
struggling to survive.
Now, of course, by the end,
long before the end,
people looked at Cary Grant
as the epitome
of accomplished,
sophisticated survival.
I'm not sure he felt it though.
Would you like to
go over to my room?
I've got some
memories from home,
pictures of my father
and mother.
Pictures of me the first time
I went up in the air.
Pictures of my first crash.
Any pictures of you
when you were a baby?
I don't remember.
(waves crashing)
WOMAN: "My darling son,
I was delighted to receive
your cablegram this morning.
Very early, I read in
the newspaper a suggestion,
you were thinking of changing
your nationality.
I hope and trust you'll
do what's right
in the sight of God.
I have always trusted in him.
I do, my darling,
so wish you were nearer.
I could see you more often
and do for you.
I felt ever so confused,
after so many years
you've grown such a man.
I'm more than delighted
you've done so well.
I trust in God you will
keep well and strong.
Hoping to hear from
you again soon,
I remain your
affectionate mother.
Fondest love,
wishing you all the best."
MARK: In the first letter she
wrote to him, the envelope
was addressed to Mr. A. Leach,
Cary Grant, actor,
Paramount Studios,
Hollywood, California, USA.
And that's as much as she knows
about where he is.
And when he writes back to her,
he signs it "Archie."
When he's with his mother,
he's always back to being
Archie Leach from Bristol.
He's not Cary Grant anymore.
Now it's said that she never
wanted to leave Bristol,
and that's why she didn't
come out and live with him
in Hollywood.
But there's a sense in which
he kept her at a distance.
I'd be very surprised if he
wanted the last person on earth
who called him Archie Leach
to come live with him
in Hollywood, where he was,
you know,
the most glamorous man in town.
See your tickets, please.
Thank you, Miss.
I'm afraid you're in the
wrong compartment, sir.
This is a first class
compartment, isn't it?
Yes, sir.
Well, then
I'm all right.
This is a third class
ticket, sir.
MARK: Hitchcock clearly
sees something very different
in Cary Grant, and something
much darker than
the other directors have seen.
Now Hitchcock was, himself,
a working-class cockney
who went to Hollywood
and remade himself.
So I think he recognized the
Archie Leach in Cary Grant
more than anyone else.
"Suspicion" begins, seemingly,
as a delightful comedy
about two glamorous people,
Cary Grant and Joan Fontaine.
Slowly, you begin to realize
there's something else
at work here, and he just
might be trying to
poison her for her money.
If you're going to kill
somebody, do it simply.
Am I right, Dr. Sedbusk?
You're right.
How would you
do it simply?
Oh, I don't know, dear.
But I'd use the most
obvious method.
The most important thing is
that no one should suspect me.
For instance?
Ah, arsenic.
I remember, in Gloucester,
where we exhumed a body
four years after, there
was still enough poison
even in the fingernails
and the hair.
Yes, but did you
get the murderer?
"You play yourself as much
as you can within a role,
if you can ever find yourself.
It takes a heck of a long time
to do that.
I think it's very difficult
to be one's self anywhere;
whereas, it's nice
and better when you relax
and just are yourself.
I think that's the most
attractive thing a person can
be, a person who lives without
artificiality of any kind."
Johnny, I'm in a state tonight,
I don't know why.
I'd like to be alone.
Would you mind sleeping
in your dressing room?
Of course I'd mind.
Please, Johnny, I haven't been
sleeping very well lately.
I understand.
DAVID: The Grant who will appear
in "Suspicion," "Notorious,"
and later on in
"North by Northwest,"
is, I think, an extension of
the Grant that Hawks and Grant
together found, because I don't
think that this was just
Grant being told what to do.
I think this was an amazingly
intelligent actor,
and a desperately insecure man
who had to find a self,
finding that self.
Feel better?
What do you care how I feel?
MARK: In "Notorious," he's a
character who is incredibly
suspicious, jealous,
and resentful of the woman
he's in love with, and he will
allow her to go through
any kind of danger and hardship,
ostensibly for her job as a spy.
Do you want me
to take the job?
You're answering
for yourself.
I'm asking you.
It's up to you.
MARK: It seems to be exploring
the idea that he is just
very emotionally damaged,
unreachable almost.
That you believe I'm nice
and that I love you
and I'll never change back.
I'm waiting for your answer.
DAVID: And you never quite
know where you were.
You never know how far
this quality of danger
is going to come out.
It doesn't ruin the likability,
but it qualifies it
all the time.
It's very hard to think of
another actor of that time
in an American film playing
a male lead who would come on
as tough and cold, and I think
he grasped it effortlessly.
Joe, take me with you,
please, darling!
I love you!
Please take me with you!
You don't belong with
a grifter like me.
You just got some mud
on your dress, that's all.
Give it time.
Let it dry.
It'll brush off.
Oh, no Joe!
Joe, I love you!
Please take me with you!
Joe -- please, Joe!
I was meant for you --
for you -- for you --
(record skipping)
DAVID: And then you notice
this film, "Penny Serenade,"
which is not as well known
as I think it should be,
a film George Stevens directed,
where he's with Irene Dunne.
He plays a man who is a failure.
He can't support
the child he's adopted,
so he risks losing the child.
And yet, he's desperate with
love for both the wife
and particularly the child.
What a grip...
for a girl, I mean.
DAVID: There's a scene where
he goes to the adoption agency
and really pleads for them
to continue custody
of this child they've adopted.
Children never meant
a great deal to me.
Oh, I liked them all right, I
suppose, but what I'm trying
to say is, Your Honor,
the first time I saw her
she looked so little
and helpless.
I didn't know babies
were so little.
DAVID: It's anguished,
it's agonized.
It certainly revealed
something about what Grant
must have felt about
wanting a child,
because it's really an amazing
scene in a way.
But the vulnerability that
suddenly spills out,
that's what I'm saying.
He did not often seem
vulnerable in films.
I'll beg,
I'll borrow, I'll --
Please, judge, I'll sell
anything I've got
until I get going again.
She'll never go hungry.
She'll never be without clothes,
not as long as I've got
two good hands
to help me.
We stroll away together
Left in the rain together
Sang love's refrain together
We'll always be together
(alarm ringing)
(breathing heavy)
"My darling son, I hope
you're not experiencing
the blitz like here.
We've not had the alert
for a couple of weeks.
This is the third war I've seen.
I'm still living much alone
with my little doggie.
Darling, if you don't come over
as soon as the war ends,
I shall come over to you."
MARK: When America did
enter the war in late 1941,
he took American citizenship,
and also had his name
legally changed to Cary Grant.
So World War II made him
Cary Grant, American citizen.
In 1942, he married
the Woolworths heiress,
Barbara Hutton,
who was the richest woman
in the United States.
She could not stand
living in Hollywood,
and couldn't stand
the people in Hollywood.
She said, "All they ever
talk about is movies."
In the two years that they were
married, he made five films,
and she complained that
when he came home, he wanted
to have dinner in bed and read
over his script for the next
day, where she had her socialite
friends and wanted cocktails
and repartee, and he wasn't
interested in that.
He was a very lone figure.
He didn't like crowds and
he wasn't a great partygoer.
"The first breakthrough came
when I realized I was the one
responsible for repeating the
same mistakes and patterns.
One day, when I was twisting
myself all over the sofa
in the doctor's office,
it was as if a light
finally went on in my brain.
I had to take command.
I finally realized all the pain
I thought my mother
had caused me,
I had caused her pain, too.
I doubt if anyone ever
understood Barbara.
But then, I doubt if Barbara
ever understood herself.
Our marriage had
little foundation
for a promising future.
Our backgrounds, family,
educational, cultural,
were completely unalike.
You're a little
flat there, hey.
What's the music called?
"None But the
Lonely Heart."
No, Russian.
MARK: "None But the Lonely
Heart" was based on a book
by Richard Llewellyn.
It's a very bleak film,
in which Cary Grant plays
the kind of man he would have
been had he stayed in Bristol.
It's the story of a bitter
unemployed cockney
who goes home to see his mother.
They have a very difficult
They're barely
on speaking terms.
I mean to do my best
by you, ma love.
Happy couple,
aren't we?
A bit of proper respect
is what's needed.
I get no more from you than I
got from that father of yours.
MARK: Not exactly the kind of
thing Hollywood liked to do.
But in 1943, he insisted that
RKO should buy the rights
to this novel so that
he could star in it.
And by that time, he had enough
star power in Hollywood
that he could do that.
Did you love my old man?
Love's not for
the poor, son.
No time for it.
MARK: Very strikingly, he put
his own father, Elias Leach,
he put Elias's photograph
on the wall
so that you can see
his own father there.
Morning, ma.
Morning, son.
MARK: As a way of saying, I
think, perhaps just to himself,
this is where I come from,
this is who I am.
What happened to you
last night?
Hit by a train,
head-on collision.
Half the wheel is still
spinning in me head...
Well I'm off, ma.
Have a good time, boy.
Thanks, ma.
Hey, hey, your hat's
on crooked.
You'll have this
shop for your own.
You're all fixed up
for a home.
Why don't you
look around?
Had too many
looks around.
And what an ugly
insanitary life it is.
It needn't be.
But it is.
Lots of love
in you, Ernie.
Wants an object,
something to lavish it on.
Oh, sorry,
after you.
Thank you.
How many have you?
I beg your pardon?
These, how many have you?
Why, none, fortunately.
I'm not married.
And when I first saw you,
I knew that all I wanted was
to cook little intimate dinners
for you the rest of my life.
Madison, when did
you really know?
I guess tonight, when I realized
you were going away
with old Joe and that
I'd never see you again.
MARK: He met Betsy Drake
on a ship coming back from
one of his trips to London.
He was apparently besotted
with her and pursued her
relentlessly, and she was
very reluctant because
he was, after all, Cary Grant.
He was older than her, but he
was also a huge figure to her.
I think she made him
young again
and brought new things
into his life.
"Betsy was good for me.
She patiently led me
toward an appreciation
of better literature.
Her cautious but steadily
penetrative seeking
in the labyrinths of
the unconscious mind
gradually provoked my interest,
just as she no doubt intended.
JUDY: She was funny and witty,
very quiet and very shy,
and all of the sort of
Cary Grant things about Cary
were just sort of
the opposite of Betsy,
and they were
wonderful together.
Betsy was into discovering
new things about
self-knowledge, self-awareness.
It was Betsy who eventually
went into LSD treatment
and therapy, then introduced
Cary to that.
"Until only a few years ago,
I had a recurring nightmare.
In the dream, I stand
on the lighted stage
of a vast theater facing
a silent waiting audience.
I'm the star, and I'm surrounded
by actors, each of whom
knows exactly what to do
and what to say.
(waves crashing)
I can't remember my lines...
(waves crashing)
...and I'm ashamed."
MARK: There was a period in
the early 1950s when his films
weren't particularly popular,
and at that point
he considered retiring.
But, magically, Alfred Hitchcock
offered him "To Catch a Thief"
at that point, and so,
he came out of retirement.
ANNOUNCER: Cary Grant, and this
year's Academy Award winner,
Grace Kelly, two exciting
personalities who were made
for each other, and now Alfred
Hitchcock brings them into very
close contact in this perfect
tale of romantic intrigue
filmed on the beautiful
French Riviera.
"Any film with Hitch was fun.
It was a collaboration
with an incredible man.
It was like being cradled
in your mother's arms.
Hitch and I had a rapport, an
understanding deeper than words.
He was so incredibly
well prepared
and nothing ever went wrong.
He knew the actor's business
as well as his own."
Who did you call me?
Ruby, John Ruby, one of the
world's cleverest jewel thieves,
known as the cat.
I read all about you
in the Paris paper.
You may have read about somebody
called the cat, but --
I thought you said
you were hungry.
I am.
Well the picnic basket's
in the trunk.
"Grace Kelly made it so easy.
Once we understood the sort of
characters we were supposed
to be playing, I could
say anything to her,
and she would have
the right answer."
Now, here comes some
of the clever part.
You're just not
convincing, John.
You're like an American
character in an English movie,
you just don't talk the way an
American tourist ought to talk.
"There are very few actresses
who really listened to you."
Give up, John.
Admit who you are.
Even in this light, I can tell
where your eyes are looking.
"Most women are
instinctively wiser
and emotionally more
mature than men.
They know about our
Men are so busy rushing around
trying to prove themselves
that they fail to
develop the interest
and curiosity shown by women.
Ever had a better offer
in your whole life,
one with everything?
I know I look
vaguely familiar.
You feel you've seen
me somewhere before.
Funny how I have that
effect on people.
It's something
about my face.
It's a nice face.
You think so?
I wouldn't say it
if I didn't.
Oh, you're that type.
What type?
Not really.
Good, because honest
women frighten me.
I don't know.
Somehow they seem to
put me at a disadvantage.
Because you're not
honest with them?
DAVID: "North by Northwest"
presents him as a very smooth,
suave, but rather irresponsible,
rather unkind person.
And, you know, he talks in
the film about having ex-wives
and secretaries and all
that kind of thing.
You feel the man has
never been attached.
And for Hitchcock, it's a film,
I think, about a reckless,
irresponsible man
who becomes attached.
There is a real moral core to
that film, and Grant, I think,
understands it totally and
does it most beautifully.
It's about a man who has
to grow up emotionally.
(airplane engine whirring)
"The shock of each revelation
brought with it an anguish
and sadness because of
what wasn't known before,
the wasted years of ignorance,
and at the same time,
the ecstasy of joy, being free
of the shackles of ignorance.
Now I know that I hurt
every woman I loved.
After weeks of treatment
came a day when I saw the light.
When I broke through, I felt
an immeasurably beneficial
cleansing of so many needless
fears and guilts.
I lost all the tension that
I'd been crippling myself with.
First, I thought of
all those wasted years;
second, I said, oh, my God,
humanity, please come in.
JUDY: It's hard for me
to imagine
someone with his childhood.
I mean, imagine, your mother
being sent away into a mental
institution and being told she
was dead and then finding out --
what was he, 31 years old
when he found out
that she was alive.
I mean, the sense of being lied
to and betrayed, I mean just
all of that, and that becoming
Cary Grant with no moment in
time to deal with Archie Leach,
no space and no part of
the universe that he lived in
that would give him
the opportunity to look at that.
Why do you keep
those pictures?
What pictures?
Those pictures of you
when you were a baby?
Jeff, you don't have to
be afraid of me anymore.
"Now, everything's changed.
My attitude towards women
is completely different.
I could be a good husband now.
I learned that my dear parents
couldn't know better than
they knew, and I shall think
of them always with love now.
At last, I'm close
to happiness."
Drip dry.
How often do you go through
this little ritual?
Oh, every day.
The manufacturer recommends it.
I don't believe it.
Oh, yes, it's great.
MARK: He aged amazingly well.
There are few people who
look as good as he did
at the age of 50,
at the age of 60.
He was known for it,
and it was still plausible
that Audrey Hepburn would
fall in love with him.
Stop treating me
like a child.
Well then stop
behaving like one.
Now if you want to tell me
what's troubling you, fine.
If not I'm tired, it's late,
and I want to go home to bed.
Do you know what's
wrong with you?
No, what?
[whistle blowing]
I'm sorry, we're all
out of whistles.
I told Harry
she could help us.
Help us do what?
Fix your boat.
Harry knows everything
about boats.
MARK: In "Father Goose,"
he plays an alcoholic, dejected,
elderly man who has really
given up on life
and wants to go off by himself
with a bottle of scotch.
It's at the end of his career,
he plays this role,
and it's a popular film,
but everyone's quite surprised
to see him this way.
You stepped on my foot!
You put it under mine!
Look out!
You're all a bunch of nuts.
MARK: It's the most
un-Cary-Grant-like role
he ever played.
Oh, now hold it.
And what have you
got there?
Oh, no!
MARK: He said, at this point,
that actually,
this is who I really am.
This is more like me than
any of the roles I've played.
Hey, what about
the necktie?
Well, now, this is no time
to talk about me.
Why not?
Why not?
Well, see, I thought they'd
be more interested in
what was inside a man's head,
not around his neck.
Then I noticed
they all wore ties.
They all looked alike and they
all behaved alike and they all
talked alike, but they were
all going the same way,
no matter which way they
said they were going.
So what was the use of teaching
them history, or anything,
they weren't learning by it?
Still creating the same old
problems, so I packed,
got on a boat,
and got away from them.
"During my LSD therapy,
I learned a great deal
and the result of it all
was rebirth.
I got where I wanted to go,
not completely, because
you cut back the barnacles
and find more barnacles,
and you have to get these off.
In life, there is no end
to getting well."
MARK: Whenever he came to
London, he would take trips
down to Bristol
to see his mother.
Friends who accompanied him
on those trips commented that
he set out very happily, excited
to see her, but approaching
Bristol, he would get more
and more somber and gloomy.
And they met the mother and
found her to be a rather quiet,
somewhat severe,
and unemotional person.
When they were together,
it seems as though
something didn't gel.
He tried to impress her.
He tried to appeal to her.
He bought her presents.
And by all accounts, she was
very reserved around him
and gave him a peck on the cheek
and didn't let him know
how excited she was to see him.
Whereas, in the letters,
she's full of praise for him
and full of emotion for him.
"I've made over 60 pictures
and lived in Hollywood
for more than 30 years, 30 years
spent in the stimulating company
of hard working, excitable,
dedicated, loving,
serious, honest, good people.
30 years ago,
my hair was black and wavy.
Today, it's gray and bristly.
But today, people in cars
stopped alongside me
at a traffic light
and smile at me.
I feel fine...
Alone, but fine."
Once he retired from film,
he took on all sorts
of activities,
none of them related
to making films.
So he became a spokesman for
Faberge at various events,
he traveled a great deal.
But the most important thing
in his life was his daughter.
He and Dyan Cannon had Jennifer.
That's the main reason
he wanted to retire.
He said I can't be spending 10,
12 hours a day on film sets.
I'm going to be a father, and
I'm going to be a full-time,
full-on father,
and he really meant it.
And she became
the purpose in his life.
The marriage to Dyan Cannon
lasted three years,
and after the divorce,
he kept in very close contact
with Jennifer, his daughter.
JENNIFER: I think one would
imagine that we were out at
parties and premiers,
things like that.
But really, we were
at home watching TV.
He loved television or playing
backgammon or cards
or listening to classical music,
taking the sun, swimming.
He was incredibly
protective of me.
I was his only child,
and a girl.
I think he had fears about,
you know, the male population
and how they would react to me
and what might happen
if I went out, and he did not
like me going out late,
because dad would worry, and
I could hear it in his voice.
First of all, he'd be angry
at me, then he'd give me
the silent treatment
if I didn't obey these rules.
But it was because he was
worried, and I knew it.
BARBARA: The age difference was
difficult for me to come over
here and totally change my life
but became immaterial because
I realized that to have someone
whom you really love
and who really loves you is
far more important than the age
difference, and also because
Cary was who Cary was,
not Cary Grant, but because he
was a man who was fascinated by
life and wanted to investigate
things the whole time,
read new things.
He did not have a closed
old mind at all.
His mind was probably
younger than mine.
But he was a little bit shy,
a little bit anxious,
a little bit wanting
to make sure that
I was the right person.
I had to prove that I was
worthy of him, because I think
he was a little bit
wary of women.
Somewhere in the depths of
his mind was the fact that
women were not always
going to be there.
Once he realized that I was in
his life for the right reason
and truly loved him, I think
then all that had not been
shown before was sort of
showered on me, thank goodness.
I mean, it was wonderful.
Cary's shyness was a strange
combination of someone who
used to be a particular way and
someone that he had become.
So there was still a little bit
of the old Archie Leach
that sort of stayed with Cary.
But he didn't really love being
out in the public too much.
I mean, he hated, for example,
having to get up
and make a speech,
absolutely hated it.
He wouldn't eat beforehand.
He would be terribly,
terribly nervous.
That's why he loved the
"Conversations with Cary Grant,"
because someone was
asking him a question.
He started the whole evening by
showing clips of many films
where backflips were done and
various other things were done,
and then he would tell a joke,
and then people will
ask him questions.
And so it was a format that
he came up with and loved.
(waves crashing)
Cary always used to have a
rehearsal, and he always
wanted me sitting in the
audience so that I could say,
"I can't hear you,
can hear you," or whatever.
And I was sitting in the
audience and he was going
through the lighting and going
through everything else,
and then his voice became
a little bit flustered.
His mind became
a little bit flustered,
and he beckoned for me
to come on stage.
So I went up to him, and he
asked me just to hold him tight
because he wasn't
feeling very well.
In the ambulance,
he was still conscious.
When we got to the hospital,
they wouldn't let me stay
with him unfortunately.
And they came back at one stage
and said that
he'd had a massive stroke.
(waves crashing)
He was cremated.
He didn't want a funeral
of any description.
He didn't want any party or
anything to do with his death.
So there was no funeral.
There was nothing.
Kirk Kerkorian took -- he did
want his ashes spread over
the sea, the ocean, and also,
over the house here,
and so Kirk Kerkorian took us up
in a helicopter, Jennifer and I,
up in a helicopter, and we did
exactly as Cary had wanted.
KENT: I've heard that you
worked as a lifeguard,
and did you have any ambition
to work on a ship or to work --
CARY: Yes, I had an ambition
to travel, I liked to travel,
and I was born in
a very old city, Bristol.
In those days, the ships came
almost into the center of
the city, so I was constantly
interested in what was going on
down there, and the fact that
those ships took people
all over the world.
KENT: Can you describe to me
what you're looking at
right now?
CARY: What I'm looking at right
KENT: Uh-huh.
CARY: Oh, how interesting.
Well, I'm in the bedroom.
It's a bedroom that still has
an unmade king-sized bed in it,
facing a TV set, and it looks
out upon Beverly buildings.
Well, it has a long sloping lawn
in front of it
going down to a swimming pool.
I look out to my right as far as
the ocean, but there are many,
many trees in my vision, and
then I look down to
the 20th Century Building.
It's a very nice
panoramic view up here.