On this day, Swedish film star Ingrid Bergman was born in 1915; and it was on this same day she died in 1982 from breast cancer on her 67th birthday.
Bergman was one of the most accomplished and recognizable actors of the 20th century. Winner of three Academy Awards, four Golden Globes, two Emmys, and a Tony Award, Bergman is ranked as the fourth greatest female star of all time by the American Film Institute.
She is best known for her role as Ilsa Lund in Casablanca (1942), in which she starred alongside Humphrey Bogart. It was in that iconic movie that Bogart uttered one of the most famous lines in cinema to Bergman, “Here’s looking at you, kid.”
Bergman’s movie career spanned six decades from 1939 to 1982. She won the Academy Award for Best Actress for Gaslight in 1945, Anastasia in 1957, and A Woman Called Golda in 1982. She was nominated for an Academy Award in For Whom the Bell Tolls in 1944, The Bells of St. Mary’s in 1946, Joan of Arc in 1949, and Autumn Sonata in 1979. She won the Best Supporting Actress Award in 1975 for Murder on the Orient Express.
Ingrid Bergman was born in Stockholm in 1915 to her Swedish father, Justus Berman, and to her German mother, Friedel Berman. Her mother died when Ingrid was three. Her father, who was an artist and photographer, died when she was 13. She went on to live with two different aunts, and later studied at Stockholm’s Royal Dramatic Theatre School, where actress Greta Garbo had studied years before.
During the 1930s, Bergman starred in more than a dozen films in Sweden and one in Germany. Unable to speak English, she was brought to Los Angeles by Hollywood producer David Selznick in May 1939 to appear in Intermezzo: A Love Story. She fully expected to return to Sweden after the film, but the American public quickly accepted her as one of its most promising stars.
Biographer Donald Spoto described Bergman as “arguably the most international star in the history of entertainment.” She successfully acted in five languages and won top awards for her work on stage, screen, and television. Director George Cukor once said to Bergman, “The camera loves your beauty, your acting, and your individuality. A star must have individuality. It makes you a great star.”
Today, global appeal and individuality also are key to success in business. Identify what makes your product or service unique, and talk about it in a language that a customer can understand.
Like it did for Bergman, it will likely make your company a great star.