John Wayne
John Wayne
John Wayne made a guest appearance as himself in the appropriately titled episode "Lucy and John Wayne" in Season 5.
Vital information
Birthname: Marion Robert Morrison
Born: (1907-05-26)May 26, 1907
Birthplace: Winterset, Iowa, U.S.
Died June 11, 1979(1979-06-11) (aged 72)
Deathplace: Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Actor, director, producer
Years active: 1926–1976
Family and Personal information
Spouse(s): Josephine Alicia Saenz (1933–45)
Esperanza Baur (1946–54)
Pilar Pallete (1954–73; separated)
Related to: Patrick Wayne (son,actor)
Character/Show information
Appeared on/
involved with:
I Love Lucy
Episodes appeared in/
involed with:
"Lucy and John Wayne" in Season 5
Appears as: Himself
I Love Lucy Wiki Script

John Wayne (born Marion Robert Morrison; May 26, 1907 – June 11, 1979) appeared as himself in the Season 5 I Love Lucy episode "Lucy and John Wayne", as well as being an accomplished film actor, was also a director and producer.[1] An Academy Award-winner, Wayne was among the top box office draws for three decades. [2][3] An enduring American icon, he epitomized rugged masculinity and is famous for his demeanor, including his distinctive calm voice, walk, and height.

Life and careerEdit

Wayne was born in Winterset, Iowa, but his family relocated to the greater Los Angeles area when he was four years old. He found work at local film studios when he lost his football scholarship to the University of Southern California (USC) as a result of a bodysurfingaccident.[4] Initially working for the Fox Film Corporation, he mostly appeared in small bit parts.

Early career rolesEdit

While working for Fox Film Corporation in bit roles, he was given on-screen credit as "Duke Morrison" only once, in Words and Music (1929). In 1930, director Raoul Walsh saw him moving studio furniture while working as a prop boy and cast him in his first starring role in The Big Trail (1930). For his screen name, Walsh suggested "Anthony Wayne", after American Revolutionary War general "Mad Anthony" Wayne. Fox Studios chief Winfield Sheehan rejected it as sounding "too Italian". Walsh then suggested "John Wayne". Sheehan agreed, and the name was set. Wayne himself was not even present for the discussion.[5] His pay was raised to $105 a week.

The Big Trail was to be the first big-budget outdoor spectacle of the sound era, made at a staggering cost of over $2 million, using hundreds of extras and wide vistas of the American southwest, still largely unpopulated at the time. To take advantage of the breathtaking scenery, it was filmed in two versions, a standard 35mm version and another in the new 70 mm Grandeur film process using an innovative camera and lenses. Many in the audience who saw it in Grandeur stood and cheered. Unfortunately, only a handful of theaters were equipped to show the film in its widescreen process, and the effort was largely wasted. Despite being highly regarded by modern critics, the film was considered a huge box office flop at the time.[6]

After the commercial failure of The Big Trail, Wayne was relegated to small roles in A-pictures, including the Columbia Pictures film The Deceiver (1931), in which he played a corpse. He appeared in the serial The Three Musketeers (1933), an updated version of the Alexandre Dumas novel in which the protagonists were soldiers in the French Foreign Legion in then-contemporary North Africa. He played the lead, with his name over the title, in many low-budget "Poverty Row" westerns, mostly at Monogram Pictures and serials for Mascot Pictures Corporation. By Wayne's own estimation, he appeared in about eighty of these horse operas from 1930 to 1939.[7] In Riders of Destiny (1933) he became one of the first singing cowboys of film, albeit via dubbing.[8] Wayne also appeared in some of the Three Mesquiteers westerns, whose title was a play on the Dumas classic. He was mentored by stuntmen in riding and other western skills.[9] He and famed stuntman Yakima Canutt developed and perfected stunts and onscreen fisticuffs techniques still used today.[10]

1930's-1940's breakthrough rolesEdit

His first leading role came in the widescreen epic The Big Trail (1930), which led to leading roles in numerous films throughout the 1930s, many of them in the western genre. His career rose to further heights in 1939, with John Ford's Stagecoach making him an instant superstar. Wayne would go on to star in 142 pictures, primarily typecast in Western films.

1950's-70's Latter career rolesEdit

Among his best known later films are The Quiet Man (1952), which follows him as an Irish-American boxer and his love affair with a fiery spinster played by Maureen O'Hara; The Searchers (1956), in which he plays a Civil War veteran who seeks out his abducted niece, played by Natalie Wood; Rio Bravo (1959), playing a Sheriff with Dean Martin; True Grit (1969), playing a humorous U.S. Marshal who sets out to avenge a man's death in the role that won Wayne an Academy Award; and The Shootist (1976), his final screen performance in which he plays an aging gunslinger battling cancer.

Wayne moved to Orange County, California in the 1960s, and was a prominent Republican in Hollywood, supporting anti-communist positions.[11] He died of stomach cancer in 1979. In June 1999, the American Film Institute named Wayne 13th among the Greatest Male Screen Legends of All Time.


  1. John Wayne News, by Dove Kehr for The New York Times, accessed 2011-07-30.
  2. John Wayne, The Numbers, accessed 2012-03-29.
  3. Quigley's Annual List of Box-Office Champions, 1932-1970 published by Reel, accessed 2012-03-25.
  4. Roberts, Randy, and James S. Olson (1995). John Wayne: American. New York: Free Press. pp. 63-64. ISBN 978-0-02-923837-0
  5. Roberts & Olson, p. 84.
  6. Template:Cite book
  7. Clooney, p. 196.
  8. Template:Cite book
  9. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named JWBio-TQL
  10. Canutt, Yakima, with Oliver Drake, Stuntman. University of Oklahoma Press, 1997, ISBN 0-8061-2927-1.
  11. Jim Beaver, "John Wayne". Films in Review, Volume 28, Number 5, May 1977, pp. 265–284.

External links Edit

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