What are the defining features of a pop icon? Someone with notoriety whose character captures the essence of an era. Someone a little dreamy, a little elusive, a little larger than life….someone like Humphrey Bogart.
What I love most about Bogart is that he didn’t get his first movie break as leading man until he was in his 40s and yet he rose to the heights of fame. He has been ranked American cinemas greatest male star and his impression may well last forever.
He looks damn good in a trench coat, with a cigar, drinking in a bar, holding a gun, hanging out in the smog, swanky bars, with leading ladies and always in a tailored suit. He might not have always had the most ideal figure but his eyes, his mannerisms, and his well clad clothes made him powerful, enigmatic, and alluring.
Two things I take from Bogart, one keep on doing what you love no matter how long it takes to get a break. Never let a passion fall by the waste side.
Two, own yourself and your character. Become someone. Figure out what your passions are, what you value and what you believe in and then become the very essence of all of that. It’s okay to not do everything in any traditional way, to make mistakes, to not be perfect.
Bogart smoked and drank and sadly he contracted cancer of the esophagus, but Bogart was Real. He wasn’t perfect, he was a man. I love Bogart, I love his characters, and I love the sadness and the confidence that always loomed in his eyes because it spoke and said I’ve lived, I’ve felt, and I’ve continued on. This is me, I am who I am, take it or leave it.