Basinger Comments on ‘Casablanca’s’ Legacy

Seventy years after Casablanca premiered at the Hollywood Theater in New York City, Jeanine Basinger discussed its lasting influence on The Takeawaya co-production of WNYC public radio and Public Radio International. Basinger says the Casablanca team had no idea their film would become such a major part of American history. She attributes the film’s durability to its technique rather than its content. “It’s about the myth of Americans as being heroic, as going out into fights that aren’t necessarily their own to fight, for people who are being treated unjustly,” she says. “The romantic hero of Rick represents that.”