Showing posts with the label Not as Stranger

Charles Bickford and the Voice of an Era

Charles Bickford, a U.S. actor born in 1891, held several jobs at a young age, before entering the world of burlesque on a dare in 1911. Burlesque eventually led Bickford to Broadway, where he starred alongside James Cagney in  Outside Looking In , in 1925. Shortly thereafter, he enjoyed success playing the role of Macready, in the 1928 Broadway production of  Gods of the Lightning . The character Macready was based on the life of anarchist Ferdinando Nicola Sacco, who along with Bartolomeo Vanzetti, were tried and executed for armed robbery. Bickford’s intense, durable and dominating physical features, paired with his stern, authoritarian voice landed him several film, radio and television roles. After he was contacted by Cecil B. DeMille, Charles Bickford accepted a studio contract with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM.) It was not long before he became dissatisfied with the work and the studio. Reluctantly, MGM executives released the disgruntled Bickford from his contract obligations