July 27, 2017

Ingrid Bergman ~ The shy lion

Ingrid Bergman (Swedish pronunciation: [ˈɪŋːrɪd ˈbærjman] was a Swedish actress who starred in a variety of European and American films.        

Ingrid Bergman 
photographer unknown

She won three Academy Awards, two Emmy Awards, four Golden Globe Awards, a BAFTA Award, and the Tony Award for Best Actress. She is best remembered for her roles as Ilsa Lund in Casablanca (1942) . . .  

Casablanca - 1942 

. . . and as Alicia Huberman in Notorious (1946), an Alfred Hitchcock thriller starring Cary Grant and Claude Rains.     

Notorious - 1946 

After her American film debut in the film Intermezzo: A Love Story (1939), co-starring Leslie Howard, Hollywood saw her as a unique actress who was completely natural in style and without need of makeup. Film critic James Agee wrote that she "not only bears a startling resemblance to an imaginable human being; she really knows how to act, in a blend of poetic grace with quiet realism." 

Before becoming a star in American films, Bergman had been a leading actress in Swedish films. Her first film, Munkbrogreven (1935),  was at age 19.   

Munkbrogreven - 1935 

Bergman was often loaned to other studios. Apart from Casablanca, her performances from this period include the Victor Fleming remake of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941), For Whom the Bell Tolls (1943), Gaslight (1944) . . .

Gaslight - 1944

. . . and The Bells of St. Mary's (1945). Her last films for Selznick were Spellbound (1945) with Gregory Peck . . .

Spellbound - 1945

. . .  Notorious (1946) with Cary Grant, and Under Capricorn (1949), all directed by Alfred Hitchcock.    

Ingrid Bergman was born on the 29 of August, 1915, in Stockholm. She was named after Princess Ingrid of Sweden.     

14 years old

Bergman admired two films by Italian director Roberto Rossellini that she had seen in the United States and in 1949, Bergman wrote to Rossellini, expressing this admiration and suggesting that she make a film with him. This led to her being cast in his film Stromboli (1950). This was the first film of hers I saw when my mom took me when I was nine or ten so my recollection of it is a bit vague.  

 Stromboli movie poster

During production, Bergman fell in love with Rossellini, and they began an affair. Bergman became pregnant with their son, Renato Roberto Ranaldo Giusto Giuseppe ("Robin") Rossellini (born February  2, 1950).   

This affair caused a huge scandal in the United States, where it led to Bergman being denounced on the floor of the United States Senate. Ed Sullivan chose not to have her on his show, despite a poll indicating that the public wanted her to appear. However, Steve Allen, whose show was equally popular, did have her as a guest, later explaining "the danger of trying to judge artistic activity through the prism of one's personal life."    

photographer unknown

Bergman and Rossellini were married on the 24th of May, 1950. In addition to Renato, they had twin daughters (born 18 June 1952): Isabella Rossellini, who became an actress and model, and Isotta Ingrid Rossellini, who became a professor of Italian literature.  

Bergman once said, "I was the shyest human ever invented, but I had a lion inside me that wouldn't shut up!"       

Bergman died on 29 August 1982 on her 67th birthday in London, of breast cancer. Her body was cremated at Kensal Green Cemetery, London, and her ashes taken to Sweden. Most of them were scattered in the sea around the islet of Dannholmen off the fishing village of Fjällbacka in Bohuslän, on the west coast of Sweden, where she spent most of the summers from 1958 until her death in 1982. The rest were placed next to her parents' ashes in Norra Begravningsplatsen (Northern Cemetery), Stockholm, Sweden. Her headstone reads simply, "Ingrid 1915 - 1982"      

grave Ingrid Bergman,  Norra Begravningsplatsen

Viewfinder links:                   
Miklós Rózsa ~ Spellbound         
Gregory Peck ~ Mr Suave      
Net links:                    
The Guardian ~ Isabella Rossellini on Ingrid Bergman         
LA Times obit         
New York Times obit      
YouTube links:                    
A&E ~ A Passionate Life          
Ingrid Bergman Interview          
Spellbound (1945) complete movie (2 hours)      
If you took acting away from me, I'd stop breathing. 
                       ~ Ingrid Bergman

Styrous® ~ Thursday, July 6, 2017  

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