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Hollywood Memorial

George Raft

Popular actor from the 1920s to 1980e was known as one of Hollywood’s sharpest dressed actors. Before acting, he started off as a prizefighter, and then moved on to dancing both on Broadway and then in Prohibition-era nightclubs. Signed by Warner Bros, he immediately slid into gangster portrayals and was type cast as the proverbial Hollywood gangster. He made bad decisions in choosing his roles turning down ‘High Sierra’ reportedly because he didn’t want to die on-screen, and nixed Sam Spade in ‘The Maltese Falcon’ because it seemed to him a lowly B picture even though both films went on to star another Warner Bros featured player, Humphrey Bogart, to stardom. He achieved some success appearing in ‘Some Like It Hot’ in 1959, again appearing as a gangster and continued to act until his death in 1980. At times when he was between pictures and down on his luck, the real Las Vegas gangsters hired him to be a celebrity greeter at their casinos, further enhancing his image and stereotype. In a crypt at Forest Lawn in Hollywood Hills.