Movies - TV
The Classic Movie Moment That Was Too Real For Humphrey Bogart
While most of the people working on “The African Queen” worried about dysentery, Humphrey Bogart and director John Huston were the only two that didn’t get it as they drank alcohol instead of water. For Bogart, his fear was actually the leeches that he had to be covered with for a scene after he comes back aboard the titular boat after pulling it thru the Ulanga River.
Bogart wanted to use rubber leeches instead of real ones, but Huston brought in a leech breeder to stir up fear and panic in the actor. Just having real leeches on the set was enough for Bogart’s performance, and he ended up just being covered with rubber leeches when it was time to shoot.
In the movie, there is a close-up shot of a real leech on a body, but it is not Bogart’s body. So while it seems like Bogart was able to avoid interacting with leeches, his son, Stephen Bogart, shared to the NY Post that “when you're in the water, in the Congo, you're gonna get leeches. They put some on him in strategic places, but he was really walking through the bulrushes.”