Weird History
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Facts About Clark Gable We Just Learned That Made Us Say 'Really?'

Updated May 24, 2021 7.1k votes 985 voters 36.1k views11 items

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William Clark Gable was oft referred to as the 'King of Hollywood.' His charisma, good looks, and superb acting skills quickly allowed him to rise to fame and become an international film star. From the 1930s to the 1960s, Gable was a sought-after actor who worked alongside some of the greatest actors and actresses of this time. During his expansive 37-year long career, he achieved many great feats. He starred in more than 60 motion pictures and even won an Academy Award. Besides his impressive career, he influenced many lives, and because of this, there are many facts about Gable that many don’t know. This list will look at a few Gable facts to shine a light on this enigmatic actor’s life.

  • Photo: Gone with the Wind / Loew's Inc.
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    He Uttered The First Curse Word In A Movie While Filming ‘Gone with the Wind’

    Today, profanity has come a long way in movies and music and is even acceptable in a lot of instances on public radio and television. However, there are still some audiences who frown on uses of any curse words in entertainment. In the 1930s, swear words were almost unheard of in the media for all crowds, and no movies featured any actors swearing. But in 1939 this changed when the first swear word uttered in a film was spoken by Gable’s character Rhett Butler in the movie Gone with the Wind. Gable can be quoted as saying, “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn,” which has become an extremely popular and quoted phrase. The use of profanity shocked audiences and even earned the producers a hefty $5,000 fine.

    There were other aspects of the movie that were risque for the time as well, but producers Selznick and Lewton insisted that the phrase was a necessity. Nonetheless, the film creators came up with a number of substitutes should they decide not to include the famous line, including "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a straw."

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    He Wore Full Dentures By Age 32

    Famous Hollywood actor Gable’s iconic smile wasn’t as natural as it appeared. And unlike many celebrities in Hollywood over the years, while his smile was doctored, it's still surprising how he got his signature smile. The truth is Gable’s brilliant smile was because of a full set of dentures he had to get. At the age of 32, Gable developed a serious gum infection that led to him having to get almost all his teeth removed. A talented dentist fashioned a set of dentures for the actor and is behind his winning smile.

    This oral disease also allegedly made his breath smell disgusting, and Vivien Leigh dreaded kissing scenes with Gable during the filming of Gone with the Wind.

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  • Photo: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-1990-1002-500 / Wikimedia Commons / CC-BY-SA 3.0 DE
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    He Was Admired By Adolf Hitler So Much That A Reward Was Offered To Anyone Who Could Bring The Actor Unharmed To Germany

    It’s no secret that renowned Hollywood actor Gable was admired and loved by thousands of people - he did have the nickname 'King of Hollywood' after all. However, it's lesser known that Gable was also admired by one of the most notorious people to live: Adolf Hitler. The leader of the Third Reich was an avid fan of Gable’s and loved to watch private viewings of the actor’s movies.

    With such interest in the actor, it is unsurprising that he offered a $5,000 reward to anyone who could bring Gable to him unharmed while Gable was involved with World War Two. It's believed that the German leader wanted Gable brought to him alive so that he would have entertainment on a tour through Germany.

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