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Birth Name: Charles Boyer
Born on August 28, 1899 in Figeac, France
Died on August 26, 1978


 

Charles Boyer had studied philosophy before he went to the theatre where he gave his debut in 1920. Although he had at first no intentions to enforce a career at the movies (his first movie was Homme du large, L (1920) of 'Marcel L'Herbier') he used his chance in Hollywood after several filming stations all over Europe. His classically handsome features and Gallic charm naturally made him one of the silver screen's greatest cinematic lovers. Trained at the Paris Conservatoire, Boyer enjoyed success as a romantic lead of screen and stage in France before making two attempts to break into Hollywood (his first attempt, from 1929 to 1931, was unsuccessful). He eventually became a star after his appearance in Garden of Allah, in 1936, and after that, he starred in classics of unrequited love opposite the most luminous leading ladies of the era, including Ingrid Bergman, Bette Davis, Olivia de Havilland, and Greta Garbo. Boyer's establishment of the French Research Foundation during World War II earned him a special Academy Award in 1942 for his achievements in encouraging French-American relations (he never won an Oscar for acting, though he was nominated four times). Boyer earned the title of "the last of the cinema's great lovers" by virtue of his incredible longevity in the romantic-lead niche. With Dick Powell, Ida Lupino, and David Niven, Boyer co-founded Four-Star Television in 1951, and remained busy in the company's TV productions during the fifties and sixties, though his output dropped off considerably after his son committed suicide in 1965. When Boyer's wife of over forty years, British actress Patricia Peterson, died of cancer in 1978, he took his own life by swallowing an overdose of barbiturates.

 
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