An Appreciation: John Wayne's First and Final Starring Roles

Anson Mount, the actor who starred as Cullen Bohannon in AMC's action-packed Western series Hell on Wheels, has written a fun appreciation of The Big Trail (1930), John Wayne's first starring role, and The Shootist, Duke's final film, for the always interesting Cowboys & Indians magazine. It's worth a read.

It was 1930 when a 22-year-old Marion Mitchell Morrison was stolen off the properties crew of a John Ford film and screen tested for a Raoul Walsh project.Subsequently, he would be renamed “John Wayne” by the Fox Film Corporation’s publicity arm and handed $75 a week to take on the leading role in one of the riskier investments in Hollywood history. It is often reported that The Big Trail represents one of Hollywood’s earliest attempts to convert the movie experience into a widescreen format, [Continue reading]

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