JackFavell wrote:Maybe BD was just a mean SOB ?
From what I've been able to find out about Brian Donlevy, I wouldn't characterize him as "a mean SOB", just a typical, wildly insecure actor. And, like many of his generation and profession, one with a drinking problem. But then, *sigh*, I'd drink too if I were stuck making Curse of the Fly and Gammera the Invincible after over forty years as an actor.
JackFavell wrote:I'd love to find a decent biography of him.
You might try the links below, one of which is a post I wrote about the actor. His off-camera behavior may not have been exemplary at all times, though I like the guy, for some reason. This probably has more to do with movies like The Great McGinty and Impact than any schoolboy bluster he may have exhibited on a movie set. Btw, in director William Wellman's autobiography, "A Short Time for Insanity: An Autobiography", he mentions the isolation and boredom that afflicted the all-male crew on the set of Beau Geste, (which grew even more acute for cast and crew after the local bordello burned down). So maybe some of the "let's take revenge on Donlevy's Markoff antics" was the product of this overwhelming atmosphere of machismo and stultifying frustration--which I suspect may have been fueled by the mischief maker in Wellman. Besides, Donlevy probably felt pretty threatened by the big, strapping, young guys surrounding his military martinet character in Beau Geste and in Wake Island.
Brian Donlevy Official Webpage
Brian Donlevy: "A Tough Guy, Not a Wrong Guy"