top of page
  • Writer's pictureCarrie Specht

TCM Honors the Late Lauren Bacall

On August 12, the legendary actress Lauren Bacall passed away at the age of 89. TCM will be dedicating 24 hours of programming to the remarkable woman who won the heart of Humphrey Bogart and was one of the last living links to the Golden Age of Hollywood. The Turner Classic Movies marathon of Bacall films starts Monday, September 15 at 5:00PM (PST) and continues right through the 16th, which would have been the actress’ 90th birthday. Of course, the twenty-four hour tribute will Include all four Bacall-Bogart pairings, as well as the Robert Osborne's Private Screenings Interview produced by and for TCM. Don’t miss this opportunity to see the work of a truly unique personality that will forever shine in the memories of classic film fans.

"Lauren Bacall was a wonderful and generous friend of ours at TCM, and a great connection to the 'golden age of cinema,'" said TCM host Robert Osborne. "Personally, I have to admit that she never failed to make my heart beat faster and my voice to stammer when we spoke. Talk about true star quality – that was Bacall. We are truly blessed to have had her as an integral part of our TCM family."

The remembrance scheduled for the 15th begins ingeniously with Bacall recounting many of her own memories for the TCM production of Private Screenings: Lauren Bacall. The special interview between TCM host Robert Osborne and Bacall was recorded in 2005 as part of that ongoing series. As usual with the series, it is an in-depth conversation with the star and Osborne as they reminisce about life on and off the screen and play clips from many movies. Then the films begin with Bacall's debut, the Howard Hawks classic To Have and Have Not. This is the film which of course introduced her to her future husband, Humphrey Bogart. Have Not is immediately followed by the famous couple’s second film together, The Big Sleep, but you’ll have to wait until the next day to catch the third and forth films, Dark Passage and Key Largo.

Of course, Bacall could do it all. Yes, she started out as just a pretty face as a young model who had turned to screen work, but she ended up proving she had the goods and then some. She gave what many consider the dramatic performance of her life in Young Man with a Horn (with Kirk Douglas and Doris Day). And her comedic turns in such films as How to Marry a Millionaire (with Marilyn Monroe and Betty Grable), Designing Woman (with Gregory Peck), and Sex and the Single Girl (with Tony Curtis and Natalie Wood) were remarkable, holding her own with the great talents with whom she costarred. If her talent had not reached beyond the ability to create a well-posed countenance she would have married the most famous actor who ever lived and that would have been that.

But one famous marriage (and later a second one to actor Jason Robards) was not all there was to Bacall. The elegant looking dame went on to enjoy a long and varied career starring opposite such icons as Gary Cooper in Bright Leaf, John Wayne in Blood Alley and Paul Newman in Harper. And of course there are those wonderful tear-jerking romance films she did with Rock Hudson and Robert Stack. And I absolutely adore her in the Agatha Christie classic, Murder on the Orient Express where she plays a boorish American millionaire-widow. Her range was really quite extraordinary. And although you won’t get the chance to see those last three films I mentioned during the TCM tribute, there’s no doubt they’ll play sometime soon. You can set your recording device to catch them the next time they air. And you’ll definitely want to for such an impressive talent as Lauren Bacall’s. You’ll see what Bogie noticed a long time ago, and you’ll see that it never faded.

The following is the complete schedule for TCM's tribute to Lauren Bacall (all times Eastern).

Monday, Sept. 15

8 p.m. – Private Screenings: Lauren Bacall (2005)

9 p.m. – To Have and Have Not (1944)

11 p.m. – The Big Sleep (1946)

1 a.m. – How to Marry a Millionaire (1953)

2:45 a.m. – Private Screenings: Lauren Bacall (2005)

3:45 a.m. – Harper (1966)

Tuesday, Sept. 16

6 a.m. – Bright Leaf (1950)

8 a.m. – Young Man with a Horn (1950)

10 a.m. – Dark Passage (1947)

Noon – Key Largo (1948)

2 p.m. – Blood Alley (1955)

4 p.m. – Sex and the Single Girl (1964)

6 p.m. – Designing Woman (1953)

bottom of page