Broken Arrow: Western Movie, Book, TV, and History Discussion

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 May 26 Birthday Wishes

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Manco

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PostSubject: May 26 Birthday Wishes   Sat May 26, 2012 11:21 am

Lesley Selander [1900 - 1979]

John Wayne [1907 - 1979]

Sam Edwards [1915 - 2004]

Jay Silverheels [1919 - 1980]

James Arness [1923 - 2011]
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Chain Lightning
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PostSubject: Re: May 26 Birthday Wishes   Sat May 26, 2012 1:12 pm

Howdy Manco!!

In a career that lasted over 30 years, between 1936-1968, director Lesley Selander never really made it into the top echelon of western directors like John Ford, Henry Hathaway etc. What he lacked in quality, he made up for in quantity, by directing over 100 western films. He came close with The Yellow Tomahawk, but that was about his best. He directed Hopalong Cassidy, Hopalong Rides Again, Bar 20 Justice, The Lone Ranger And The Lost City Of Gold, Laramie, with the Durango Kid and many many other enjoyable western films.

John Wayne was/is an American western film icon. First attracting attention in the 1939 version of Stagecoach, he would go on to star in 142 movies. He was the star of classic films like The Quite Man, Reap The Wild Wind, Red River, The Searchers, Hondo, The Alamo, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence, and the film that won him, his only Academy Award True Grit. His final film, The Shootist was a fitting tribute to this aging legend. He was voted the top grossing box office star of all time. Often competing against film giants like Henry Fonda and James Stewart, no one could imitate his voice, his walk or his style. When it came to playing a western hero, the Duke stands alone at the top.

Jay Silverheels was a Canadian born Mohawk Indian. He appeared in many great films during his career, like Captain From Castille, Drums Across The River, Broken Arrow and The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing. He even had a small part in the Duke's Oscar winning film, True Grit, but it is the role of The Lone Ranger's faithful friend, Tonto, that he will always be remembered for. Let us hope that Johnny Depp doesn't do an injustice to his memory in the new remake of The Lone Ranger.

James Arness was first off his landing craft at Anzio Beach in WWII, because he was the tallest and they wanted to determine how deep the water was. He was wounded in the leg and even after undergoing several operations, the leg continued to cause him pain all through his lifetime. After returning to the U.S., Arness got into radio and eventually was cast in a small part in the 1947 film The Farmer's Daughter, which led to his being cast in a couple of sci-fi films, The Thing and Them. He became acquainted with John Wayne and the Duke cast him in several of his films. When C.B.S. approached John Wayne in 1955, with the idea of spinning off the popular radio show, Gunsmoke into a t.v. series, the Duke turned it down, but suggested his friend James Arness for the part. I remember watching the premiere episode for Gunsmoke with the introduction by John Wayne. He was standing on the front porch of an old western building on C.B.S's studio lot. Arness went on to star as Marshal Matt Dillon for the next 20 years and when it was finally cancelled, he took on another series called How The West Was Won as Zeb McCahan. Arness would continue to return to the role of Matt Dillon, for the next 10-15 years, in several made for t.v. films, like Return To Dodge, The Last Apache. He saw this series go from a 30 minute broadcast to a 1 hour show and then to color and eventually, Arness formed his own production company and took over production of the series. Although he never appeared in many different westerns, he cemented his place in western history with his enduring association with this long running series.

Ed


Last edited by Chain Lightning on Sat May 26, 2012 2:37 pm; edited 6 times in total
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Tinhorn

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PostSubject: Re: May 26 Birthday Wishes   Sat May 26, 2012 1:24 pm

What can you say about the Duke that hasn't already been said? Same for James Arness.

Lesley Selander was a B Western director, and later directed episodes of Lassie, The Tall Man, Cannonball, and Laramie.

Sam Edwards was a character actor who played a lot of hotel clerks and store owners, and is probably best known as the banker on Little House on the Prairie.

Jay Silverheels, best know as Tonto, was born Harold J. Smith, the son a Canadian Mohawk chief. Besides playing Tonto, he was in several films and TV shows. If you look closely, he was one of the men that is hanged in True Grit. He also raised, bred, and raced horses as a hobby.
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Art Pepper

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PostSubject: Re: May 26 Birthday Wishes   Mon May 28, 2012 1:45 am

Wayne, Arness & Silverheels - what an iconic trio!
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