African Queen

The African Queen: Humphrey Bogart, Katharine Hepburn and John Huston (The Blacklist Episode #4) by Karina Longworth

Download this episode, or find on iTunes.

In the late 1940s, as the country was moving to the right and there was pressure on Hollywood to do the same, Katharine Hepburn, Humphrey Bogart and John Huston all protested HUAC in ways that damaged their public personas and their ability to work in Hollywood. Hepburn’s outspokenness resulted in headlines branding her a "Red" and, allegedly, audiences stoning her films. Bogart and Huston were prominent members of the Committee For the First Amendment, a group of Hollywood stars who came to Washington to support the Hollywood Ten -- and lived to regret it. With their career futures uncertain, the trio collaborated on the most difficult film any of them would ever make, The African Queen.

 photo candidkatehuston-1.jpg

Show notes:

Here is a list of published sources that the entire season draws from:

The Red and the Blacklist: An Intimate Memoir of a Hollywood Expatriate by Norma Barzman

Dalton Trumbo: Blacklisted Hollywood Radical by Larry Ceplair and Christopher Trumbo

Trumbo: A biography of the Oscar-winning screenwriter who broke the Hollywood blacklist by Bruce Cook

When Hollywood Was Right: How Movie Stars, Studio Moguls, and Big Business Remade American Politics by Donald T. Critchlow

Odd Man Out: A Memoir of the Hollywood Ten by Edward Dmytryk

City of Nets by Otto Friedrich

Hollywood Radical, Or How I Learned to Love the Blacklist by Bernard Gordon

I Said Yes to Everything by Lee Grant

Army of Phantoms: American Movies and the Making of the Cold War by J. Hoberman

Naming Names by Victor S. Navasky

Sources specific to this episode:

West of Eden by Jean Stein

By Myself and Then Some by Lauren Bacall

Tough Without a Gun: The Life and Extraordinary Afterlife of Humphrey Bogart by Stefan Kanfer

Kate: The Woman who was Hepburn by William J. Mann

Me: Stories of My Life by Katharine Hepburn

An Open Book by John Huston

John Huston: Courage and Art by Jeffrey Meyers

As Bogart Sees it Now” Milwaukee Journal, December 3, 1947

I’m No Communist” by Humphrey Bogart, Photoplay, May 1948

Special thanks to our special guest, Rian Johnson, who reprised his recurring role as John Huston.

This episode included excerpts from the following videos:

Episode 1 of Hollywood Fights Back:

Bogart on Episode 2 of Hollywood Fights Back:

Katharine Hepburn’s speech at the May 1947 Henry Wallace rally:

Humphrey Bogart’s Oscar acceptance speech:

This episode was edited by Henry Molofsky, and produced by Karina Longworth with the assistance of Lindsey D. Schoenholtz. Our logo was designed by Teddy Blanks

Blacklist Flashback: Bogey Before Bacall by Karina Longworth

Download this episodefind on SoundCloud or iTunes.

Humphrey Bogart was Warner Brothers' most valuable star in 1947, when he, his wife Lauren Bacall, his future African Queen co-star Katharine Hepburn, his friend and frequent director John Huston and many other stars actively protested HUAC. We'll get into that next week. This week, we're flashing back to our episode on Bogart from 2014, describing how the Casablanca star struggled to find his niche in Hollywood during the first part of his film career, the tough guy roles that changed things around, and finally his transformative romance with Lauren Bacall. 

This episode originally debuted in September 2014. The original show notes for the episode contains sources, soundtrack information and more. 

We’ve also previously discussed the careers of Katharine Hepburn and John Huston. In our 11th episode, from way back in July 2014, we talked about Katharine Hepburn’s rise and fall and rise again in the 1930s, and her relationship with Howard Hughes. Listen to that episode if you want to get a sense of how Hepburn was perceived as a star going into the Blacklist era, and for details as to what was going on in her personal life during the events that we’re going o talk about next week, check out episode number 64, which deals with Hepburn’s relationship with Spencer Tracy and their work together on such films as Woman of the Year. Finally, John Huston pops up here and there throughout our archive, but most prominently in episode number 35, which dealt with Huston’s service in World War II, and his relationship with actress Olivia de Havilland.