Next: Ben Johnson role of Tector Gorch …
A powerful and unique movie.
Not a Favorite, but worthy.
Originally posted on Tim Neath - Visual Artist:
A few months ago I was reading a book at work about the depiction of Native Americans in the western genre. There was a chapter that discussed a revisionist western where an Englishman is captured and assimilated into their culture over the course of the film. Observing how this was dealt with in comparison to others in the past which were treated more as rescue stories, returning the captured white man back to civilised society. Whilst also considering the damage that their time with a native trie will do to the individual, will they be scared and damaged as we found this horrifyingly in The Searchers (1956), or should they be abandoned or shot in Two Rode Together (1961), these are just two examples of a discussion that was going on in the 19th century. The effect of one primitive culture on a more advanced one (as we…
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“You always have two choices: your commitment versus your fear.”
– Sammy Davis Jr.
- I Gotta be Me – Sammy Davis Jr.
I’m sure a few people were surprised to see Sammy Davis Jr. listed as one of the Actors that Sam Peckinpah had considered for the role of Dutch Engstrom in The Wild Bunch, which was eventually played by Ernest Borgnine.
But I’ll tell you something – I bet Sammy would have done a great job.
Firstly Sammy Davis Jr. was one of the greatest Entertainers who ever lived. He could do anything:
Stage and Screen, Stand up, Impressionist, Dance, Sing, Recording Artist, played several musical instruments … ???
Immensely talented – the consummate performer.
Also like many American kids of his era, it appears that Sammy loved Westerns – that probably dreamed of being Cowboy like many of us did.
I have plenty of evidence to support my claim:
Sammy’s Gunhandling / Twirling talents were legendary in Hollywood and he showcased them often.
Sadly, apart from sporadic notable incidents like the Klondike Gold Rush, most
of Canadian Western History was not recorded in any manner.
Nor did we have a Film Industry …
Ah well …
Seems to me that many of the early Western actors were deliberately selected because they were genuine cowboys/horsemen. Somewhere along the line this eventually changed however, whereby acting talent and charisma replaced authentic expertise in the saddle.
Originally posted on The Western Film Preservation Society:
Part 2: Those Silver Screen Cowboys who were good riders or became good riders
A couple months ago, I started a series on the riding abilities or lack thereof of our silver screen heroes. Part 1 discussed the heroes who really were great horsemen from the start. Unfortunately, my computer crashed and was out of service for 6 weeks and my articles were on the hard drive. Everything seems back normal now and I can continue on with the series. Sorry for the delay buckaroos and buckarettes! On to part 2!
I rate Gene Autry as a good rider and horse person. Some people questioned his riding ability to which he responded: It doesn’t bother me—you are always going to have somebody write stuff like that. What the hell? I don’t know where they get that stuff, though. I was raised on a cattle ranch, and my…
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Richard Jaeckel …. Unique recollections from Garry Armstrong.
Originally posted on SERENDIPITY:
I don’t remember the exact date, but it was warm. We shot in shirtsleeves in the lobby of the TV station. I couldn’t get a studio and was being urged to get the shoot finished as quickly as possible. The “suits” were unimpressed with Richard Jaeckel. James Coburn was the hot interview on the circuit as “Pat Garrett and Billy The Kid” was being pushed by publicists. Richard Jaeckel was very pleasant and friendly even before we rolled the camera.
He asked about what I did. I gave him a snapshot biography back to my radio days and shooting my own film at a previous TV station. He grinned and said it was good to be working with a “grunt”. The rapport was established.
I mentioned having interviewed Gregory Peck a decade earlier, how well we got along. Jaeckel segued into working with Peck in one of his earliest…
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