Beverly hills

Bugsy Siegel — the gangster straight out of a Hollywood movie

Benjamin ‘Bugsy’ Siegel was about as meta-gangsterish as a real life gangster could get. Born in the slums of Manhattan’s Lower East Side in 1906, he was still a teenager when he teamed up with Meyer Lansky to become a successful bootlegger and mob enforcer. But when Mayor La Guardia came along in the early 1930s to clean up New York’s underworld, Siegel moved to California, and began dressing the way film adaptations of gangsters were supposed to. He befriended actors who played characters like him, and even filmed a couple of test scenes of himself playing a gangster who was based on a gangster like him. (The studios feared