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mrsl

Tim Holt

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Years ago the Statler Brothers had a big country hit named "Whatever Happened to Randolph Scott", and in it there was a line that went:

 

'Whatever happened to Randolph Scott, Tim Holt, and Gene Autry . . . whatever happened to all of them is happening to the best of me'

 

I never knew who Tim Holt was, but today I found out. I loved his corny westerns, such a baby face playing the hero, almost as unbelievable as Audie Murphy. Can someone tell me more about him? Did he do other stuff or only Westerns? I love westerns and can't believe I've never seen him before. Please fill me in.

 

Anne

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His most famous role would be along side Humphrey Bogart in "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" I really liked him in that.

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I completely forgot about the Magnificent Ambersons, but I still think "The Treasure of The Sierra Madre" was a better role for him. He was the perfect compliment to Bogart in that.

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Mr. Holt also had good roles in "The Magnificent Ambersons", "My Darling Clementine", "Stagecoach", "Swiss Family Robinson", "Fifth Avenue Girl", "Back Street", and "Hitler's Children".

He was also Anne Shirley's love interest in "Stella Dallas".

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Tim Holt was just great in Treasure of the Sierra Madre.

 

Also, in the 1940s he made many westerns for kids. Every town had neighborhood theaters that had Saturday matinee shows for kids. They started at about 1 or 2 pm. They would show two or three movies, a serial or two, and one or two cartoons. So the parents could dump us off and have the afternoon to themselves.

 

In the late ?40s and early ?50s most of the kids movies were westerns. Some were jungle adventure, and a few were space-age adventure films.

 

The popcorn and candy and cokes were like 5cents or 10 cents so we would eat in the theaters. The hot dogs were about 15 cents.

 

There were about a dozen or more famous cowboys, such as Tim Holt, Lash Larue, Whip Wilson, Wild Bill Elliot, Gene Autry, Roy Rogers, and several others. Each of them had special talents and some had special side-kicks. Tim?s side-kick was an ?Irish-Mexican?.

 

At night, starting at maybe 6 or 7 o?clock, there would be the night films for adults and families. Sometimes they were westerns too, but with more adult type characters and usually higher budget films. On some Saturdays, we kids could see the matinee and the night films too and see 4 westerns in one day.

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I knew I d seen him somewhere else, but after all the westerns today, I couldn't picture him in anything but western clothing, but now I see him in Ambersons, thanks.

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I particularly liked him in a supporting role in Robert Mitchum's HIS KIND OF WOMAN. He was a pleasant, easygoing personality you enjoyed watching every time. And yes, I agree he was excellent---holding his own in heady company in TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE.

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Some other things not mentioned about Holt:

 

He starred in 47 B westerns for RKO starting in 1940, where he was esteemed as having one of the quickest draws on film. He took over as the studio's chief western star when George O'Brien hung up his holsters (as a series actor). Before starting his own series, Holt supported O'Brien and Leo Carillo in westerns, in addition to the A movies already listed by others. From 1940-1943, Holt starred in 18 westerns (6 per shooting season) with two sidekicks: a singer and an old codger. Ray Whitley handled the singing end of it, writing most of the songs for the movies, and Emmett Lynn and Lee "Lasses" White took turns as the talltale-telling windbag. Unlike Gene Autry and Wild Bill Elliott, Holt didn't play himself in his movies. He played a different character in most of them.

 

Holt then left the studio to participate in the War as part of the Army Air Corps (he was wounded on the last day of the War and received a Purple Heart), and RKO tried to fill his shoes with James Warren and Robert Mitchum (who quickly graduated to the A ranks). After the War and portraying one of the Earp brothers in MY DARLING CLEMTINE, Holt picked up where he left off at RKO. He made 29 more B westerns, usually sidekicked by, as Fred mentioned, Chito Jose Gonzalez Bustamente Rafferty--an Irish-Mexican (played by the wonderful Richard Martin).

 

The highlight of Holt's B career was THE ARIZONA RANGER (1948) in which Tim's real life father and veteran movie tough guy Jack Holt played his father. His younger sister, Jennifer Holt, also appeared in a number of B westerns. After concluding his B western series in 1952, Holt appeared in the cult sci-fi classic THE MONSTER THAT CHALLENGED THE WORLD (1957). He died in 1973 after a battle with cancer.

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I have friends who knew Holt very well in his final years here in Oklahoma City...I know there are some very interesting stories, but I want to call and make sure the details before I post

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I'm looking forward to it, Genius, and nice to see you back on the boards. Thanks again for getting me close to Dale Robertson. I hope all is well with him.

Gerb

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Fifth Avenue Girl - One of my favorite movies, ever! I knew his name from the movie - but somehow never made the connection with the same Tim Holt as all those westerns! He was so suave...Thanks for the reminder.

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