Monday, November 29, 2010


Speaking of alternate TV dimensions......

"Over There" - the only other dimension known by the Homeland Security off-shoot called 'Fringe' division - has several major differences with the main Toobworld. Homeland Security works out of the basement of the Statue of Liberty; there's a "Red Arrow" comic book instead of "Green Arrow"; and two classic Humphrey Bogart movies starred other actors. Cary Grant apparently was Sam Spade in "The Maltese Falcon" and Ronald Reagan played Rick Blaine in "Casablanca". (Reagan was the original casting choice for the movie when it was still in the development stages.) It makes one wonder if Bogie ever became an actor "Over There".......

Here's what Wikipedia has to say about that distinctive scar on Bogart's lip:

It was during his naval stint that Bogart may have gotten his trademark scar and developed his characteristic lisp, though the actual circumstances are unclear. In one account, during a shelling of his ship the USS Leviathan, his lip was cut by a piece of shrapnel, although some claim Bogart did not make it to sea until after the Armistice was signed.

Another version, which Bogart's long time friend, author Nathaniel Benchley, claims is the truth, is that Bogart was injured while on assignment to take a naval prisoner to Portsmouth Naval Prison in Kittery, Maine. Supposedly, while changing trains in Boston, the handcuffed prisoner asked Bogart for a cigarette and while Bogart looked for a match, the prisoner raised his hands, smashed Bogart across the mouth with his cuffs, cutting Bogart's lip, and fled. The prisoner was eventually taken to Portsmouth. An alternate explanation is in the process of uncuffing an inmate, Bogart was struck in the mouth when the inmate wielded one open, uncuffed bracelet while the other side was still on his wrist.

According to Darwin Porter's Humphrey Bogart: The Early Years, the scar was caused by his father, Belmont, during a terrible argument.

It doesn't matter what the truth is behind the scar as far as that "Over There" dimension is concerned. We know history is changed there.

So maybe that ship the Leviathan was destroyed when it was shelled; or at the very least, sailor Humphrey Bogart was killed in that explosion. So that would serve as the reason why Bogie never went on to make any movies.

No Bogie in "The Maltese Falcon", "Here's looking at you, Kid" would probably not have the same resonance without him in "Casablanca", no chance to recreate his Broadway triumph in "Petrified Forest" since he wouldn't have been around to do that either. (Edward G. Robinson was the original choice by the studio to transfer the role of Duke Mantee to the screen, so maybe that's how it still played out without Bogie's appeal to the play's producer to intercede.)

There would be no "Sabrina", no "Treasure Of Sierra Madre". And since he wasn't around to make "To Have And Have Not", the life of Lauren Bacall would have been significantly different as well. First off - since she wouldn't have been married to him, there would be no Stephen or Leslie Bogart in their world. Even her career would have been significantly different. If she didn't make a big splash in that movie (Great as she was in "To Have And Have Not", her star power was augmented by her romance with her much older co-star.), she might not have been offered the other roles that came along.

Or Bogie was alive and just didn't attain stardom; he could have lived but might have been seriously injured in that explosion. When the bandages came off... blerg.

Maybe he remained a stage manager and/or a struggling screenwriter......

Aren't you glad you live in the Trueniverse?



Anonymous said...

Actually, Reagan was never intended for Casablanca. That is a myth created by some press releases from Warner Bros. announcing a new film with Ronald Reagan. That was a trick of the studio system used to get the names of up-and-coming actors out in the media, so that their names were given free publicity.


Andy said...

Don't forget Eric Stoltz was in "Back to the Future."

Toby O'B said...

Right! In fact several different views of the movie marquee can be found online showing those credits!