Dave Ternowski
not widely known: former Cuban President Fidel Castro once attempted to become a Hollywood actor 1/18/2013 5:21PM Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Jerry Beeker, a talent scout with Paramount, was vacationing in Havana when he spotted a tall, athletic, and still clean shaven Fidel Castro at a night club. Introducing himself, he gave the young Castro his card and invited him to Hollywood for a screen test.

A few weeks latter, with the blessings of his parents, Fidel Castro boarded the ferry that would take him to Key West, just 90 miles away, in Florida. After catching a train for the west coast, Fidel was soon in Jerry Beeker's Paramount office. Needing a Latin lover type to deliver a single line in the soon to be completed production, Havana After Midnight, Fidel was cast as a Cuban gigolo. And his line, "Si Yanqui. Havana has the most beautiful and hot blooded women in the world. You'll like it here."

When the studio told him that his line had been cut, he went to the office of film editor Barney Pockler and demanded to know why he had been left on the cutting room floor.

For years, before his death, Pockler would tell this story. "This guy shows up in my editing bay, yelling about how Beeker had promised him he was going to be a movie star. I said, listen Ace. I called everyone Ace back then. It wasn't my decision to cut your scene. The director looked at the dailies and decided you was a stiff. So snip, snip and you're gone. End of story.

When he got to the door, the little grease ball turned around and told me that he had always loved America, but not anymore, and that we was all going to regret it. I always figured that if we hadn't cut the guys line, maybe there wouldn't have been a Bay of Pigs. I know when we all thought the Cubans was going to hit us with them Russian missiles, I kept thinking I might have killed myself."

Castro returned to Cuba. In 1963, the CIA confiscated Castro's out takes. They haven't been seen since.

california pride
RE: not widely known: former Cuban President Fidel Castro once attempted to become a Hollywood actor 1/18/2013 5:35PM - in reply to Dave Ternowski Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
cool story bro