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How much did Bogart get for making “Maltese Falcon” and “Casablanca”?

Dear Cecil:

How much was Humphrey Bogart paid for making The Maltese Falcon and Casablanca? I hope it was a lot.

Leslie B., Chicago

Cecil replies:

Bogart was under contract to Warner Brothers at the time he made his two most famous films–he was paid by the year, not by the picture. In 1941, the year of Maltese Falcon, Bogart received $96,525, which also covered his appearances in High Sierra and The Wagons Roll at Night. In 1942, he was paid $114,125 for his performances in All Through the Night, The Big Shot, Across the Pacific, and Casablanca. Even by the pre-inflationary standards of the time, it wasn’t exactly what you’d call “a lot.” Bogart had only established himself as a box-office draw (and a moderate one at that) with High Sierra; the biggest stars of the 40s–Gable, Cagney, and Cooper–were making three or four times as much. For those two years, Bogie actually checked in at somewhat below Mickey Rooney ($158,083 in 1941; $156,166 in 1942).

Cecil Adams

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