Charles Boyer (1899 - 1978)

Charles Boyer
1899 - 1978
updated November 05, 2019
Charles Boyer was born on August 28, 1899 in Figeac, France. He died on August 26, 1978 in Phoenix, Arizona at 78 years of age.

Charles Boyer, the suave, French-born actor who courted a bevy of leading ladies in films during the 1930s and 1940s and became one of Warner Bros.' top stars, died Saturday at a local hospital.

His death came just two days after the death of his wife of 44 years, Pat.

Boyer, who would have turned 79 on Monday, had been found unconscious at his home and was rushed to St. Joseph's Hospital by paramedics. He died a short time later, a spokesman said.

Dr. Thomas Jarvis, Maricopa County coroner, said he would conduct an autopsy today. A hospital spokesman said a heart attack was suspected.

Boyer became the top-salaried star at Warner Bros. in 1945.

During the 1930s and 1940s, he epitomized the Continental gallant-suave, impeccable of manner and dress. He played the polished lover to many of the movies' leading ladies, yet had the strength and authority to be convincing also as a man of action.

Unlike many a romantic star, he moved easily into character parts with middle age. In one film, he portrayed the father of Leslie Caron. He had no vanity about his appearance and willingly played roles in which he looked older than he was, even at times appearing without his toupee if the character called for it.

Perhaps he is best remembered for his role as the thief Pepe le Moko in "Algiers."

Among his later films were "Is Paris Burning?," "How to Steal a Million," "Casino Royale" and "Barefoot in the Park."

Boyer, who was born in Figeac, France, found himself at the age of 7, when he began getting major parts in school plays. The son of a farm machinery dealer, Boyer used his father's granary as a theater, and, at age 12, learned passages of long plays and rehearsed with self-written scripts.

After studying at the Sorbonne and the Paris Conservatory, Boyer made his stage debut in Paris' Theatre Antoine in "La Bataille" and soon became a leading stage star. He made his film debut in 1920.

Although French producers did not consider him photogenic, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer brought him to Hollywood to do French versions of successful English-language films when dubbing was unknown.

Not until 1931 did he make his first major picture with an English-speaking role, "The Man From Yesterday," with Claudette Colbert.

He also signed to do "The Red-Headed Woman" with Jean Harlow, but thought his imperfect English would hamper him, so he returned to France to polish it.

He was brought back to Hollywood in 1934 and kept a date with success and the woman who later became his wife, British actress Pat Paterson. He met her on a studio lot and they were married that year.

Leading ladies he courted in films as he rose to fame included Greta Garbo, Irene Dunne, Bette Davis, Ingrid Bergman, Jennifer Jones and Hedy Lamarr, as well as Miss Colbert.

Charles Boyer Biography

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Charles Boyer
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Charles Boyer was born on in Figeac, France
Charles Boyer died on in Phoenix, Maricopa County, Arizona US
Charles Boyer was born on in Figeac, France
Charles Boyer died on in Phoenix, Maricopa County, Arizona US
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Charles Boyer
Born August 28, 1899 in Figeac, Lot, France
Died August 26, 1978 in Phoenix, Arizona, USA (suicide)
Nickname The Latin Lover
Height 5' 9" (1.75 m)
Charles Boyer studied philosophy before he went to the theater where he gave his debut in 1920. Although he had at first no intentions to pursue a career at the movies (his first movie was L'homme du large (1920) by Marcel L'Herbier) he used his chance in Hollywood after several filming stations all over Europe. In the beginning of his career his beautiful voice was hidden by the silent movies but in Hollywood he became famous for his whispered declarations of love (like in movies with Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich or Ingrid Bergman). In 1934 he married Pat Paterson, his first and (unusual for a star) only wife. He was so faithful to her that he decided to commit suicide two days after her death in 1978.
- IMDb Mini Biography By: Volker Boehm

Spouse (1)
Pat Paterson (14 February 1934 - 24 August 1978) ( her death) ( 1 child)
Took a fatal dose of barbiturates two days after his wife's death, which was also two days before his own seventy-ninth birthday.
Had one son: Michael Charles Boyer (born December 9, 1943); committed suicide September 21, 1965. He apparently played Russian roulette with a .38-caliber revolver after quarreling with a girlfriend.
He was awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6300 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California on February 8, 1960.
Following his death, he was interred with his wife Pat Paterson at Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City, California.
Received a degree in philosophy from the Sorbonne.
Half bald by his twenties, he only wore a toupee for his movie roles. Out in public, he never wore it.
Won a special Tony Award in 1952 "for distinguished performance in 'Don Juan in Hell', thereby assisting in a new theatre trend". He was also nominated for Broadway's 1963 Tony Award as Best Actor (Dramatic) for "Lord Pengo".
Vice president of the jury at the Cannes Film Festival in 1964.
Off-screen was a happily married bookworm; referred to by his friends as a "stick-in-the-mud".
Chuck Jones used his French voice and mannerisms when he created famed cartoon skunk Pepé Le Pew.
Boyer was the first choice of director Claude Chabrol in 1959 for "A Double Tour", but the role was ultimately played by Jacques Dacqmine.
Anatole Litvak thought Boyer was the best actor he ever worked with.
Boyer reportedly turned down offers to star in If I Were King (1938), The Great Waltz (1938), Wuthering Heights (1939).
His favorite film was the romantic drama Love Affair (1939).
Became a naturalized citizen of the United States in 1942.
In addition to English and French, he spoke German, Italian and Spanish.
Always considered the right side of his face to be the more expressive, and was consistently photographed from that side, right up to the end of his film career.
Appears in six Oscar Best Picture nominees: Love Affair (1939), All This, and Heaven Too (1940), Hold Back the Dawn (1941), Gaslight (1944), Around the World in 80 Days (1956) and Fanny (1961), with Around the World in 80 Days the only winner.
Lost the Best Actor Oscar to Spencer Tracy twice consecutively for films released in 1937 and 1938.
Often associated with the catchphrase "Come with me to the casbah", though he never actually said it on screen.
Signed with Ufa in 1928 to make French versions of German films in Berlin.
Personal Quotes
Mostly I've played other roles, but even when I've played other parts people see me differently. In America, when you have an accent, in the mind of the people they associate you with kissing hands and being gallant. I think that has harmed me, just as it has harmed me to be followed and plagued by a line I never said.
That love at first sight should happen to me was Life's most delicious revenge on a self-opinionated fool.

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Charles Boyer died on August 26, 1978 in Phoenix, Arizona at 78 years of age. He was born on August 28, 1899 in Figeac, France. We are unaware of information about Charles's family or relationships.
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1899 - 1978 World Events

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In 1899, in the year that Charles Boyer was born, the meaning of Chinese "oracle bones" was rediscovered. Farmers in China had been turning up the bones in their fields for generations but most often they were ground up and sold as medicine. The chancellor of the Imperial Academy and a friend noticed, before they ground the bones, that they had writing. The bones had been used around the second millennium BC for divination.

In 1906, Charles was only 7 years old when English biochemist Frederick Hopkins concluded that vitamins are essential to the human body and that a lack of vitamins caused scurvy and rickets. Scurvy and rickets were both huge problems in sailors that were at sea for extended time and the addition of vitamin C, vitamin D, and calcium in their diets helped eradicate the problem.

In 1936, by the time he was 37 years old, on November 3rd, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was reelected to a second term. He ran against Republican Governor Alf Landon (Kansas), defeating Landon in the popular vote by 60.8% to 36.5%. Vermont and Maine were the only two states in which Landon won. John Nance Garner IV became the Vice-President in this election.

In 1941, at the age of 42 years old, Charles was alive when on June 25th, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 8802, prohibiting racial discrimination in the defense industry. EO 8802 was the first federal action to prohibit employment discrimination - without prejudice as to "race, creed, color, or national origin" - in the U.S. Civil Rights groups had planned a march on Washington D.C. to protest for equal rights but with the signing of the Order, they canceled the March.

In 1978, in the year of Charles Boyer's passing, on July 25th, Louise Brown, the first "test-tube baby", was born at Oldham Hospital in London. Louise was conceived through IVF (in vitro fertilization), a controversial and experimental procedure at the time.

Other Biographies

Other Charles Boyers

Unknown - Unknown
Unknown - Nov 23, 1919
around 1928 - Unknown
around 1927 - Unknown
around 1920 - Unknown
around 1919 - Unknown
around 1919 - Unknown
around 1905 - Unknown
around 1902 - Unknown
around 1920 - Unknown
around 1915 - Unknown
around 1906 - Unknown
around 1923 - Unknown
around 1924 - Unknown
around 1922 - Unknown
around 1913 - Unknown
around 1912 - Unknown
around 1919 - Unknown
around 1917 - Unknown

Other Boyers

Jan 12, 1769 - Mar 28, 1853
Unknown - Unknown
Oct 20, 1764 - Dec 17, 1812
Nov 12, 1718 - Feb 11, 1769
Unknown - Unknown
Unknown - Unknown
Unknown - Unknown
Unknown - Unknown
Unknown - Unknown
around 1800 - Unknown
around 1802 - Unknown
around 1804 - Unknown
Unknown - 1913
Unknown - Unknown
Unknown - Unknown
Unknown - Unknown
Unknown - Unknown
October 1780 - Apr 13, 1864

Other Bios

Oct 7, 1665 - Feb 16, 1708
Feb 2, 1722 - Apr 19, 1733
Mar 28, 1729 - May 11, 1729
around May 15, 1694 - around Nov 17, 1785
May 23, 1733 - Jun 16, 1733
Aug 14, 1735 - Aug 26, 1735
Sep 10, 1741 - Jan 2, 1832
Mar 11, 1649 - Jun 24, 1650
Dec 20, 1661 - Mar 30, 1703
1715 - Mar 22, 1761
1330 - Aug 1, 1370
May 30, 1632 - Unknown
May 12, 1599 - Oct 17, 1662
Sep 14, 1590 - Nov 14, 1679
1560 - Jan 6, 1601
around 1540 - 1601
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