The Heel with Charm: Zachary Scott

shadowsandsatin

The cad you love to hate.

Smooth-talking, darkly handsome and effortlessly sophisticated, Zachary Scott excelled at roles that depicted him as the charming cad you love to hate. In most of his nearly 40 Hollywood features, Scott was cast as the villain who achieved his nefarious ends through the use of his magnetic appeal. Although the actor once claimed to enjoy such roles (“provided that it is villainy with charm, evil with originality, and murder with music”), their frequency ultimately served to stagnate his once-promising career. As a result, while Scott displayed a genuine acting talent in a number of films, most notably as a sharecropper in search of a better life for his family in The Southerner (1945), he is best known for his work as a cad, and played this role to the hilt in his four films noirs:  The Mask of Dimitrios (1944), Mildred Pierce (1945), Danger…

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