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Creator / Lauren Bacall

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"You know how to whistle, don't you, Steve? You just put your lips together... and blow."
"Slim" (Lauren Bacall) to Steve (Humphrey Bogart), in To Have and Have Not

Lauren Bacall (born Betty Joan Perske; September 16, 1924 – August 12, 2014) was an American actor known for her distinctive voice and sultry looks, as well as her range that allowed her to do everything from serious, dramatic films noir such as The Big Sleep (with her first husband, Humphrey Bogart) to ridiculous comedies of errors like How to Marry a Millionaire (with Betty Grable and Marilyn Monroe).

Bacall's acting career could be best described as "right place, right time" or the idyllic lifestyle that any aspiring actor would want. After her parents' separation when she was a child, her mother encouraged her to make it big in show business. Her name was changed (due to "Perske" sounding too Jewish, apparently... although "Bacall" was from her mother's family's equally Jewish name of "Bacal-Weinstein") and her hair was dyed; she was "discovered" by Harper's Bazaar columnist Diana Vreeland, and appeared on the cover of that magazine's March 1943 issue (posing outside of a Red Cross blood donation office); and her screen debut, alongside Bogart in 1944's To Have and Have Not, was one of the most successful movies of the year. She would go on to appear in three more films with Bogart, whom she first met when she was nineteen and married despite his being more than twenty years her senior.

Starting in The '60s, she stopped regularly appearing in films, but had a rather successful career on Broadway, starring in productions such as Cactus Flower and Applause, and as a liberal activist. She also provided voice-overs for station idents created for PBS between 1996 and 2002 (in one version, Bacall herself appeared, as that series of idents had people like Chris Rock lifting a disc with the "P-Head" symbol over their faces as small acrobats appeared around them). For 53 years she lived in the Dakota Apartments in New York City, and thus was a neighbor of John Lennon prior to his 1980 murder.

She is the mother of actor Sam Robards, from her second marriage to Jason Robards.

Incidentally, Bacall was a cousin of Shimon Peres, former Israeli president and prime minister, who won the Nobel Peace Prize with Rabin and Arafat for trying to fix the Arab–Israeli Conflict. Peres was born Szymon Perski. One wonders what their family reunions (if any) were like.

She died on August 12, 2014 at the age of 89 in New York City from a stroke.

Partial filmography:

Her career displays examples of: