Movie Article

Life Goes On

The real-life endings to biopic subjects -- Here's the rest of the story about Alexander the Great and Ray Charles that aren't shown in their films

Biopics can't possibly tell the entire story of their subjects' lives — they'd all be three times as long as Alexander. But this season, some cinematic slices of life are cut less generously (and more abruptly) than others. We dug up some details, after the credits rolled.

FINDING NEVERLAND There was no happy ending for J.M. Barrie's beloved Llewellyn Davies boys (five lads, by the way, not the film's four): George was killed in WWI, Michael drowned while an undergrad at Oxford, and Peter commited suicide in 1960. Oh yes, and dad Arthur Llewellyn Davies was prematurely bumped off in the film; he was very much alive when Barrie met the boys in 1898.

ALEXANDER In the wake of the Macedonian conqueror's death at 32, quarreling among his generals — one of whom killed both Alexander's wife and his posthumously born son in 310 B.C. — led to the collapse of his empire.

KINSEY After critics trashed 1953's Sexual Behavior in the Human Female, insomniac Kinsey became addicted to his ''recreational'' drugs, dying of a heart attack in 1956. His institute, however, published three more volumes based on his work.

RAY While Charles stayed clean and continued making hit records long after 1965, the year director Taylor Hackford's narrative ends, he also divorced ''true love'' Della Bea (who was actually his second wife) in 1977 and fathered a total of nine kids out of wedlock before passing away earlier this year.

THE MOTORCYCLE DIARIES After completing his South American tour with pal Alberto Granado in 1952, Ernesto ''Che'' Guevara earned an M.D., befriended and later broke from Fidel Castro, and led a doomed Bolivian revolt — only to be immortalized as a T-shirt.

Originally posted Dec 01, 1979 Published in issue #796 Dec 10, 2004 Order article reprints