Fighting Westerner

(Part 1 examined the evolution of Randolph Scott from generic leading man into the iconic Western star he would become through a series of low-budget Paramount Zane Grey adaptations directed by Henry Hathaway. The story continues:)

Just a year after he’d begun the Grey series, Scott had settled so effortlessly into the role of native Westerner that roles like Heritage of the Desert’s tenderfoot Jack Hare were already well behind him. The 1933 Sunset Pass, again with Harry Carey and Noah Beery, consolidated the image even further with his role as a young gunslinger falsely accused of murder – and in Man of the Forest that same year, he and Hathaway added the final ingredient to the persona that would make him a major box office attraction for the next 30 years.
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November 16, 2009 · Posted in Legends, Western  
    

Scott

By 1932, Randolph Scott was all washed up.

The young Virginian had come to California in pursuit of an acting career, but despite his good looks, charm and intelligence, after four years he’d landed nothing more than extra work and a couple of bit parts. As many frustrated film actors have done before and since, he’d hauled his 6’2” frame onto the live stage in search of exposure, and his performance in a drama called The Broken Wing finally earned him attention and a contract with Paramount.

However, by mid-’32 he’d been given only one decent supporting role, a single bit part, and humiliating extra work as one of the hybrid creatures in The Island of Lost Souls. Paramount clearly hadn’t a clue how to use him.
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October 5, 2009 · Posted in Legends, Western