“Play it, Sam. Play ‘As Time Goes By’”
And so, those were the words of the lovely Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman) as she finds herself in Rick’s in the 1942 classic, Casablanca.
Movie aficionados also know that Rick (Humphrey Bogart) never said “Play it again, Sam.”
He said, “You played it for her. You can play it for me. If she can stand it, I can. Play it.”
Even as I write this post, it strikes me that Casablanca was produced during the middle of World War II. I always assumed that the movie would have come out after the war was over, i.e. sometimes after 1945. But, that was not the case. Indeed, in 1942, the eventual outcome of World War II was in doubt.
Note: IMDB lists Casablanca as being made in 1942. However, Casablanca must have been released in 1943 because it was up for nomination at the 1944 Academy Awards.
Casablanca, starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, won three Oscars at the 1944 Academy Awards: Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Screenplay.
Also up for Best Picture in 1944 were such classics as “For Whom the Bell Tolls” and the original release of “Heaven Can Wait”. In the original version of “Heaven Can Wait”, the protagonist is a boxer.
You may recall that in the 1978 remake of “Heaven Can Wait”, Warren Beatty stars as Joe Pendleton, who strives to be the rich quarterback for the Los Angeles Rams. Also, Julie Christie stars as Betty Logan, the embattled spokesperson for a small town that has become the victim of Joe’s corporate greed.
But I digress.
Exactly how did Humphrey Bogart not win Best Actor; and, Ingrid Bergman not win Best Actress at the 1944 Academy Awards? You would think those two awards would have been slam dunks.
So, I did some research.
Best Actor award at the 1944 Academy Awards – and the Oscar goes to: Paul Lucas for “Watch on the Rhine”. I know we all remember that stirring performance. FYI, Humphrey Bogart was nominated for his role in “Casablanca”.
Best Actress award at the 1944 Academy Awards – and the Oscar goes to: Jennifer Jones for “The Song of Bernadette”. No comment. (No comment needed, except to add that Ingrid Bergman was nominated for Best Actress at the 1944 Academy Awards).
Also, as you are probably aware, there are two “Best Screenplay” categories, one based on original work, the other based on previously written work. Casablanca won “Best Writing – Screenplay” which differentiates Casablanca as a previously written work. So, my research was not complete.
Was “Casablanca” a book before it was a movie?
Well, no. Actually, the screenplay of Casablanca used for the movie was based on a play that had never been produced.
And, one more…
This whole post got me to thinking:
Where is Casablanca?
Casablanca is on the western coast of Morocco. It is also due south of Portugal, separated by the north Atlantic.