Humphrey Bogart’s Unconventional Diet Filming ‘The African Queen’ Saved Him From Dysentery

Humphrey Bogart is, to this present day, one of many largest names in motion pictures. Though the dashing main man died pretty early, at simply 57, he starred in a monumental variety of traditional movies. Of his many iconic performances, the one he lent to the notoriously troubled manufacturing of The African Queen is certainly one of his finest.

He pushed by a brutal shoot alongside the incomparable Katharine Hepburn. Forged and crew fell in poor health on the set one after one other. All, that’s, besides Bogart and director John Huston. How did that curious state of affairs come to cross?

‘The African Queen’ set was legendarily troubled

Humphrey Bogart towing the African Queen by the jungle swamp in “The African Queen.” Film nonetheless. | Bettmann / Contributor

The 1951 movie The African Queen set the template for an entire subgenre of movies. It’s nonetheless imitated to this present day, its mix of journey and comedy mirrored in latest motion pictures like Jungle Cruise and The Misplaced Metropolis. The lavish course and impeccable appearing got here at a extreme price to everybody who labored on it, although.

The Guardian reviews that the shoot was tough and messy in many various methods. Some had been preventable, like director John Huston’s erratic habits. Others had been unavoidable for the worldwide shoot. Chunks of the movie had been dealt with in Los Angeles studios and Florida labored as a stand-in for a number of the African places within the script.

However massive quantities of the film had been filmed within the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda. Huston’s solid and crew weren’t correctly ready for the surroundings. They had been stalked by crocodiles and bitten by tsetse flies. Shoots would wildly shift between heavy rains and searingly scorching sunny days. After which there was the notoriously tough habits of Bogart himself. 

How Humphrey Bogart’s eating regimen saved him from sickness on ‘The African Queen’ set

Bogart and Huston had been intense figures on any units they labored on. Collectively, whereas making The African Queen, their alcoholism led to fixed erratic habits and artistic clashes between the entire solid and crew.

The lead actor and his director bonded over one factor above all: scotch, in accordance with Bogart used to drink no matter he may get his palms on, however by this level gained the Rat Pack have an effect on of sipping on a glass of scotch. It changed most of his meals and drinks. When he and Huston did drink water, it tended to have a contact of the smoky liquor added to the glass.

This behavior, as unhealthy because it clearly was, saved the pair from dysentery. Your entire solid and crew had been stricken with the sickness from ingesting tainted water. One way or the other, Bogie and Huston ended up in one of many uncommon conditions in life the place a heavy each day ingesting behavior finally ends up being a optimistic.

Humphrey Bogart’s truncated profession stays one of many biggest runs in cinematic historical past

Tough shoots weren’t uncommon for the Rat Pack chief. Famously, almost everybody concerned with filming Casablanca thought they had been making a sloppy dud of a movie. Bogart was dismissive towards the script, the director, and plenty of of his costars agreed. It wasn’t till the second they noticed the ultimate minimize of the movie that they realized that they had one thing particular on their palms.

In line with the British Film Institute, his high movies nonetheless function examples of a number of the best work in a number of genres. He was most influential for noir movies, and the broader cinematic crime style. His gritty noir work in The Maltese Falcon is the mildew trendy crime dramas nonetheless try for.

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