Robert Mitchum: Hollywood's First Bad Boy And Star Pothead, Stories And Scandals

By Kellar Ellsworth
Left: Actor Robert Mitchum smokes a cigarette outdoors, circa 1948. Right: Mitchum with Marilyn Monroe in 'River Of No Return' (1954). Sources: Hulton Archive/Getty Images; IMDB

Actor Robert Mitchum was the original Hollywood bad boy, a rough-and-tumble young actor who was even busted for marijuana, an unforgivable sin in an era when movie studios were hyper-protective of stars' images. It's now fairly standard for handsome up-and-coming actors to cultivate an air of rebellion and danger, hoping to be perceived as the next James Dean, Marlon Brando or Steve McQueen -- but Mitchum fit the description years before those kids came along. He was a fighter and a drunk who didn't seem to care who he offended. In trouble with the law from a young age, Mitchum was known for his lifelong contempt for authority figures. "The only difference between me and my fellow actors," Mitchum famously said, "is that I've spent more time in jail."