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Charles Boyer

1897 - 1978

The actor Charles Boyer began his successful film career in French silent movies, beside it he also appeared in some German silent movies too.

He made his film debut in "L'homme du large" (20). It followed "Le grillon du foyer" (22) and "Le capitaine Fracasse" (29). 

With the transition to the sound movies his roles became bigger. He already made his film debut in the USA in 1931 with "The Magnificent Lie" (31), where he later could continue his career very successful. To his European talkies belong "Le procès e Mary Dugan" (30), "Tumultes" (32), "Ich und die Kaiserin" (33), "I.F. 1 ne répond plus" (33), "Lilliom" (34) and "Le bonheur" (34).

Parallel to his European movies he could cement a second career in the USA. But the begin was hard. First he had to learn English, and for the Americans he was a completely unknown actor.
Maurice Chevalier wrote in his memoirs: "The directors took no notice of him. But ie Regisseure nahmen keinerlei Notiz von ihm. But Charles Boyer didn't care and I wondered how a celebrated star in whole France could bear this terrible lack of interest."

Months went by in which Charles Boyer studied English night and day. After all he got a tiny role as a chauffeur at Jean Harlow's side in "Red-Headed Woman" (32), but the appearance was enough to direct the attention to him. Charles Boyer - the great star in France - wasn't afraid of beginning at naught in the USA, but this attitude paid off. It followed engagements for "The Only Girl" (33) and "Private Worlds" (35) and he soon became a popular actor who was surrounded with a very special aura.

With his acting in "Shanghai" (35), "Mayerling" (36), "The Garden of Allah" (36), "Conquest" (37), "Algiers" (38) and "When Tomorrow Comes" (39) he became a great star in the USA who especially fascinated the female audience.

Charles Boyer was normally brought into play for so-called gentleman roles because of his French accent. Therefore he fought for more profound and more eventful characters from the 40's. In the next years he took part in "Tales of Manhattan" (42), "Flesh and Fantasy" (43) and finally he impersonated his most impressive role as a villain in "Gaslight" (44). 
Charles Boyer got the American nationality in 1942. 

Charles Boyer succeeded in the transition to "more mature" roles easily. He was convincing in "Confidential Agent" (45), "Arch of Triumph" (48), "The 13th Letter" (51), "Nana" (55), "Around the World in Eighty Days" (56) and "The Buccaneer" (58). Since the 50's he also appeared again in French productions like "Una parisienne" (57), "Les démons de minuit" (61), "Paris brûle-t-il? (66) and "Le rouble à deux faces" (68). Other well-known movies in those years are "Fanny" (61), "The Horsemen of the Apocalypse" (61), "How to Steal a Million" (66), "Casino Royale" (67), "Barefoot in the Park" (67) and "The Madwoman of Chaillot" (69).

He only appeared in few more movies in the 70's, so in "Lost Horizon" (73), "Stavisky" (74) and "A Matter of Time" (76).
When his wife, the actress Pat Paterson, died in 1978, Charles Boyer decided to follow her two days later. He commited suicide with sleeping pills (his son Michael also commited suicie in 1965 at the age of 21).

Charles Boyer was nominated for four Oscars during his career, in 1943 he got the Honorary Award for his cultural achievement with the foundation of the French Research Foundation in Los Angeles.

Other movies with Charles Boyer: 
Chantelouve (21) L'esclave (23) La ronde infernale (28) La barcarolle d'amour (29) Révolte dans la prison (30) The Man from Yesterday (32) L'épervier (33) Moi et l'impératrice (33) La bataille (33) Caravan (34) The Battle (34) Break of Hearts (35) I Loved a Soldier (36) History Is Made at Night (37) Tovarich (37) Orage (38) Love Affair (39) Le corsaire (39) All This, and Heaven Too (40) Back Street (41) Hold Back the Dawn (41) Appointment for Love (41) The Constant Nymph (43) Together Again (44) La bataille du rail (46) Cluny Brown (46) A Woman's Vengeance (46) On Stage (49) The First Legion (51) Serie "Four Star Playhouse" (52) Thunder in the East (52) The Happy Time (52) Madame de... (53) The Cobweb (55) La fortuna di essere donna (56) Serie "I Love Lucy: Lucy Meets Charles Boyer" (56) Paris, Palace Hôtel (56) Maxime (58) Serie "The Dick Powell Show: Days of Glory" (61) Julia, Du bist zauberhaft (62) Love Is a Ball (63) Serie "The Rogues" (64) A Very Special Favor (65) The April Fools (69) Serie "The Name of the Game: The Emissary" (69)