Cary Grant: The Making of a Hollywood Legend

In Features by Samuel Love

Archibald Alec Leach, known to millions as Cary Grant, was one of classic Hollywood’s definitive leading men. But the story of how he became that unforgettable icon of the screen is something more fascinating than anything Hollywood could ever conjure up.

Grant’s debonair charm is stripped back in a fascinating new account from film historian Mark Glancy to reveal the star’s working-class background in the backstreets of Bristol and how a sad, neglected child became the suave, glamorous star of films like North by Northwest and An Affair to Remember. The first biography to be based on Grant’s own never-before-examined personal papers, this extensive and detailed account provides an authoritative source on the star, with incredible insight into the making and reception of each of his beloved films.

Impeccably researched and leaving no stone unturned, Cary Grant: The Making of a Hollywood Star highlights Grant’s life – perhaps even more interesting than the accounts of his illustrious career are the insightful looks at his private life, illuminating the legendary actor’s many loves and family with remarkable candour. The book is written in a compelling and accessible way by Glancy, himself a Reader in Film History at Queen Mary University of London. Also the editorial consultant on documentary Becoming Cary Grant, Glancy is certainly an authority on Grant and his knowledge shines through in this remarkable book.

Anybody with an interest in cinema history would be wise to seek out this incredible and insightful tome, which brings Cary Grant’s fascinating life and career into focus like never before. Those seeking juicy nuggets of Hollywood history will be delighted with the unheard anecdotes littered throughout, while the tender portraits of Grant’s private life offer a compelling study of celebrity and fame. 

Cary Grant: The Making of a Hollywood Legend is the definitive account of the life and work of the beloved actor, and one that you should find a home on your bookshelf for immediately. 

Mark Glancy is Reader in Film History at Queen Mary University of London. His book, Cary Grant: The Making of a Hollywood Legend, is published by Oxford University and available now.