Robert Mitchum, the actor who was forged as a tough guy in prison

EiTB | A.A.

This week marks 100 years since the birth of actor Robert Mitchum, a tough guy who he was arrested twice throughout his life.

Next August 6 will be fulfilled 100 years from birth of the actor Robert Mitchum, a tough-looking classic Hollywood actor who starred in such films as “El Dorado,” “Hunter’s Night,” “Cape of Terror,” and “Ryan’s Daughter.” The program “La Noche De …” has reviewed his personal and professional career.

Mitchum rolled in total 133 movies and TV series, was nominated for an Oscar for the war drama “We are also human beings” and, already in his maturity, he received the Donostia award for the whole of his career. Despite his successful career, he gave the impression of being a most humble actor, since he despised fame by assuring that “being an actor is not a real job”. He claimed not to see his own films because “they pay me to shoot them, not to see them.” And he did not appreciate his qualities as a performer, saying that “I only have two ways of acting: with horse and without horse.”

However, those who really knew him assure that his apparent pasotism it was a pose; that she actually took her job very seriously, but didn’t want anyone to notice in order to keep her tough guy picture. For this reason, Robert Mitchum preferred to talk about how he smoked marijuana regularly or was able to have 50 glasses of whiskey before dinner.

Robert Charles Duram Mitchum He was born on August 6, 1917, in the state of Connecticut. But his family fled there to avoid legal trouble, the day his father nearly killed a bus driver over a traffic argument. The family moved to Charleston (South Carolina) and it was there that this actor grew up. His father found a job on the railroad, hitching and unhitching wagons, but soon became trapped between two of them and was crushed to death.

Traumatized by the accident, Robert began to write poetry, and it became so good that the newspapers published some of his poems. But Mitchum didn’t want to look like a softie so, at just 14 years old, he entered a gang of juvenile delinquents and left home. It was the time of the Great Depression. Young Robert traveled all over the country sneaking into trains of merchandise, as the tramps did then. In his travels, he discovered wild marijuana and was fond of joints forever.

This adventure ended in Savannah (Georgia) where it was arrested for vagrancy and sentenced to forced labor: they put him to build a highway chained to other prisoners. However, he was only there for 3 months, since in a mistake by the guards he managed to run away, while the policemen shot him. He was about to die, but managed to hide and return to his mother’s house.

When he returned, he met Dorothy Spence, the woman of his life. Perhaps to gain their respect, Mitchum went looking for work at the factories that were opening in Los Angeles, but once there, he discovered that in the film industry they paid much better. It didn’t take much effort for him to find work as a helper thanks to his five-foot-three feet, blue eyes, and stocky body.

After saving enough, he returned to the town to propose to Dorothy in a curious way, as his son Chris Mitchum explained in the documentary about his biography. He said: “Stay with me and you will fart under silk panties, you will shit in a gold toilet …”

The statement must have convinced Dorothy because they were married. They were together for 57 years, until the actor’s death, and they had 3 children. Although he had infinity of lovers during that time: Shirley MacLaine, Katharine Hepburn, Ava Gardner, Jean Simmons, Marilyn Monroe, Deborah Kerr… They say he slept with everyone he could since he became a star.

However, becoming a star was not easy. His first movie was a western from series B titled “Border patrol”. On the first day of filming, a helper was accidentally crushed by horses and died almost on the spot. At that moment, Robert Mitchum must have arrived at the filming and, with the corpse still in full view, they gave him the dead man’s hat to complete his look.

Little by little, he was getting better roles until one night, his fledgling career seemed about to be cut short when he was arrested for smoking marijuana at a party. Was sentenced to three months in jail and the scandal occupied the pages of all the newspapers. This news would have ruined the career of any other actor, but just the opposite happened: prison reinforced Robert Mitchum’s tough image and made him even more famous. When he left, asked what the prison was like, he replied with the calmness that characterized him: “It’s just like Hollywood, although the people are more classy.”

After years of work, Robert Mitchum he died at the age of 79 a victim of cancer lung. When he was diagnosed, the doctors ordered him to immediately quit smoking and drinking. But he ignored them, and the night he died he smoked a cigarette and drank a glass of whiskey just before he went to bed for the last time.

After his death, a rumor spread that his ashes had been scattered in a whiskey distillery. The rumor is not true, but it could have been, since Robert Mitchum requested that they do so. However, his family chose to throw them into the sea in a special ceremony.

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Robert Mitchum, the actor who was forged as a tough guy in prison

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