Essay on John Wayne

This essay has a total of 732 words and 4 pages.

John Wayne


The Duke takes his place in history.
John Wayne, one of America's greatest actors and
directors of all time. His fame and superstardom led to many
problems in his career. His image as an icon of American
individualism and the frontier spirit has overshadowed his
career to such an extent that it is almost impossible for the
fans and writers to separate Wayne the legend from Wayne
the actor and Wayne the man.
Before the start of his movie career he played football
at USC under his birth name, Marion Michael Morrison. He
held many behind-the-scene jobs at Fox before moving in
front of the cameras in the late 1920's in a series of small
roles. Director John Ford, who befriended ' the Duke';,
recommended him for the lead role in Raoul Walsh's western
epic, The Big Trail. Wayne did not let the stardom go to his
head. He spent the rest of the decade making his way
through a series of low budget films whose failing budgets
and quick shooting schedules did little to advance his career.
In 1939 John Ford gave Wayne another break by
casting him as the Ringo Kid in Stagecoach. The roll threw
Wayne into the top ranks of the movie stars and finally, in
the 1940's, his legend began to take shape. Relieved from
military duty due to physical problems, Wayne became the
film industry's hard-core soilder, but had that compassionate
side. Movies released during the war, such as Flying Tigers

(1942), The Fighting Seabees (1944) and Back to Bataan
(1945) left Wayne with some pretty big shoes to fill.
The movies that he made at the end of the decade
were the ones that established him as an actor of merit.
Howard Hawks emphasized the willful side of Wayne's screen
persona by giving him the part in Red River (1948). He
played the part of Tom Dunson, a difficult, unlikeable yet
compelling character. Two other films directed by John Ford
quickly followed. Fort Apache (1948) and She wore a Yellow
Ribbon (1949).
For a good part of the 50's and 60's Wayne took part in
several small pictures. Standard western and action movies
but nothing too dynamic. Because of the numerous films
though he was financially in good setting. In 1969 he won
Best Actor Oscar for True Grit, a light-hearted if not
particularly impressive performance. Wayne's final role was
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