Of course, I never met Gregory Peck .. only on the silver screen. I’ve seen most of his films .. those that are available these days that is.
Two of my favorite films of his are “To Kill A Mockingbird” and “Keys of the Kingdom” and the respective characters in both of them. I believe his portrayal as Atticus Finch in “To Kill a Mockingbird” may have been the first film of his I saw — but that’s been some time ago.
What I remember is feeling as if Atticus and the man were one, and as I’ve learned more about his life, and most recently watched on TCM “A Conversation with Gregory Peck,” I’m convinced I”m correct. I just was blown away by how genteel, kind, and patient .. brimming over with integrity .. that I ever perceived in an actor. Further proof is the adoration of his children and wife, and palpable love and happiness that passes between the members of the family.
My favorite memory of Peck is as Atticus when he gives Scout her mother’s pearl necklace or tells of the giving to come… and just how tender and wonderful he was.
That integrity and persona of Gregory Peck still overflows onto viewers years, decades after the films were created. They can be enjoyed over and over and over again due to the sheer “in touch” feeling one has not so much with the characters in the films, but the man who created them.
I look forward to meeting him up above some day in that wild blue yonder. Happy 100th birthday, Atticus.