Less than a day after the world learned of the shocking death of Robin Williams, another Hollywood icon has passed. Lauren Bacall, whose wavy brunette locks and brassy attitude, has died at the age of 89. The cause of death was a massive stroke. The Humphrey Bogart Estate confirmed the news via Twitter.
"With deep sorrow, yet with great gratitude for her amazing life, we confirm the passing of Lauren Bacall." - The Humphrey Bogart Estate
Bacall was a newcomer to the screen, when she starred in 1944's To Have and Have Not with her soon to be husband, Humphrey Bogart. She was only 19 years old but she delivered a line that will go down in the annals of celluloid history.
"You don't have to act with me, Steve. You don't have to say anything, and you don't have to do anything. Not a thing. Oh, maybe just whistle. You know how to whistle, don't you, Steve. You just put your lips together and...blow."
With that line, she stole the already married Bogart's heart and the worlds. The two would marry in 1945 and remain together until Bogart's death in 1957. The couple had two children together, Stephen Humphrey Bogart and Leslie Howard Bogart. Leslie was named in honor of actor Leslie Howard, who had pushed to cast Bogart early in his career in The Petrified Forest. It would later turn into a noir television show more than 15 years later starring both Bogart and Bacall.
While married, Bacall continued to shine in solo acting pursuits. She garnered rave reviews for her work with Marilyn Monroe in How To Marry A Millionaire and the Gregory Peck vehicle, Designing Women, displaying her comedic chops and proving that she was more than just film noir's husky voiced siren. After Bogart's death from esophageal cancer, her career sputtered. She spent most of her time on Broadway and was cast in a few notable films like Murder On The Orient Express and John Wayne's last film, The Shootist.
She continued to act in the 80's, 90's and 2000's, this time with a more mature appearance and a perfectly coifed silver mane. In 1997, she was nominated for a best supporting actress Oscar for her role in The Mirror Has Two Faces opposite Barbara Streisand. Bacall played Streisand's ballsy but classy mother and housemate as Streisand's character navigated the middle aged dating scene. Bacall would lose her Oscar bid to Juliet Binoche for her work in the The English Patient. However, she did take home the Golden Globe that year. She would not take home an Oscar of her own until 2009 when the Academy honored her with an honorary Oscar.
Personally, Bacall remarried to Oscar winning actor Jason Robards, Jr. in 1961, but the two divorced just 8 years later. She gave birth to her third child, Sam Robards, in her first year of marriage. To date, Bacall remains the only Oscar winning actress to have married two fellow Oscar winning actors.
Through it all, Bacall will be remembered as the girl with grit who could charm the pants off of any man with just a tilt of her chin. She was born Betty Joan Persky and now she has a name that is etched in Hollywood history. She ranks as number 20 on the American Film Institute 100 years...100 stars list and her 4 films with Bogart solidified her as one half of Hollywood's original power couples. Rest in peace, Mrs. Bacall.