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Ben Johnson, Someone to remember


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> {quote:title=JackFavell wrote:}{quote}

> It must be in another book, I'm having trouble finding it.

>

> Anyway, according to someone, maybe Mildred Natwick, Joanna Dru was a lively girl, and they got to comparing the attributes of the actors in the picture they were working on. I think it was SWAYR, but I'm not sure. Anyway, they came to the conclusion that John Wayne ON a horse was as sexy as all get out, but that OFF the horse..... nothing.

>

> I can't for the life of me understand it. :)

 

 

Hahahaaaa! I think I do remember that "discussion". I think I may be in the minority

but I have never been as impressed with Wayne's riding as I am with many others, Coop

for one and your Ben for another or Joel McRea. The one exception is True Grit which

is admirable just because the sheer effort and stamina he had to exert at that age for those

scenes (the showdown and the fence jumping) are remarkable---particularly given his weight

at the time.

 

Now when he was really young in those "B" westerns, he showed more skill with a

horse and looked better, but no, I have always thought his body language when he

is standing still to be much more magnetic than his riding. If that makes sense.

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I agree. Of course, my comparisons are few, not being as up on westerns. Coop in the saddle... mmmmm. (Or out of the saddle). Ben in the saddle is like a god. I keep reading things that call his riding "poetry" or "the best rider ever" and I think it's true. And he is so gorgeous, it is always a pleasure to watch him.

 

I have been watching Wayne more closely lately, and although he certainly holds his own, doing some good hard riding and even some tricky stunts, he is definitely not poetry. I would call him quirky, in or out of the saddle. I wonder if you see something in him on the screen that was not there in real life.... because to me, his body was very expressive.... and especially his back - as I said in the rambles thread. That man could show more emotion with his back than any other actor I can think of.

 

There is a quote I found in *Pappy* about *They Were Expendable* :

 

"Bob Montgomery was his pet on that picture. He could do no wrong. I guess it was because he had been in the navy. Jack picked on me all the way through it. He kept calling me a clumsy b*st*rd and a big oaf and kept telling me that I moved like an ox. Now if I couldn't do anything else, at least I moved well."

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> {quote:title=JackFavell wrote:}{quote}

>

> I have been watching Wayne more closely lately, and although he certainly holds his own, doing some good hard riding and even some tricky stunts, he is definitely not poetry. I would call him quirky, in or out of the saddle. I wonder if you see something in him on the screen that was not there in real life.... because to me, his body was very expressive.... and especially his back - as I said in the rambles thread. That man could show more emotion with his back than any other actor I can think of.

>

 

It's true! You know the first movie I noticed Wayne employing the "back to the audience"

gesture? The Quiet Man.

 

 

> There is a quote I found in *Pappy* about *They Were Expendable* :

>

> "Bob Montgomery was his pet on that picture. He could do no wrong. I guess it was because he had been in the navy. Jack picked on me all the way through it. He kept calling me a clumsy b*st*rd and a big oaf and kept telling me that I moved like an ox. Now if I couldn't do anything else, at least I moved well."

 

lol, yes that broke me up I remember that one. What a naughty instigator Papps was.

Montgomery called him on it, too. But I just adore that this did nothing whatever to alter

Montgomery's unequivocal admiration for Ford---he even went so far as to say he'd have

gladly signed an exclusive contract to continue working for him.

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> {quote:title=MissGoddess wrote:}{quote}

> lol, yes that broke me up I remember that one. What a naughty instigator Papps was.

> Montgomery called him on it, too. But I just adore that this did nothing whatever to alter

> Montgomery's unequivocal admiration for Ford---he even went so far as to say he'd have

> gladly signed an exclusive contract to continue working for him.

 

 

Now I didn't remember that! I love RM.

 

Don't you think that JF was tricky, doing that? Making Wayne maybe a little jealous of Montgomery? Getting him all irritated without any recourse? He got such a performance out of him. And I think Wayne actually learned something from those jibes, because that is another movie that I think of him as particularly graceful in.

 

 

>It's true! You know the first movie I noticed Wayne employing the "back to the audience" >gesture? The Quiet Man.

 

I didn't remember that one so much as TMWSLV. Again, it's one I measure almost all others by.... but almost any of Wayne's movies have some scene with his back to the camera, and Pappy was especially great at those shots. But Wayne, what an actor! I never thought I'd say those words....but it's true. He is fantastic, especially when things are unsaid, like with his back to you.

 

Now I am usually an arm girl, but Wayne's back? Heaven.

 

Photobucket

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JackF - I wanted to thank you for posting these screencaps. They are clear as a bell. I will be out of town starting Friday, for a week or so. Maybe, when I come back, I will try my hand at screencaps. Not sure if I have the wherewithall, but they seem our best bet at Ben shots.

 

{quote:title=JackFavell wrote:}{quote}

> I got some nice caps from *The Shadow Riders* . This is the second of the Tom Selleck/Sam Elliott TV movies about the Traven brothers who fought on opposite sides of the Civil War. The story is from a Louis L'Amour novel. It's rather predictable and lackluster, and sometimes the comedy seems odd when you think of the darkness of the plotline. The boys are all nice to look at and it's a no brainer to watch if you are in the mood for something light. I would take Ben at age 64 over Tom or Sam. But you guys knew that already. :D

 

 

> It turns out Jack's been incarcerated for a little gunplay with the mayor's son, over a woman.... guess he is quite the ladies man, leaving a trail of broken hearts and dead husbands in his wake. :)

>

> Photobucket

> Photobucket

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Kathy-

 

Click to enlarge, then click again to get the full size photo:

 

Wow Wendy... this board is WHACKO.... ha. Earlier tonight I could SEE your picture of our Beloved Ben and the gal who played Jill in my all time fave BEN movie... MJY... but I could NOT get a reply in. (I had that dreaded "YELLOW WALL SYNDROME") But NOW I can finally post... but for some reason I cannot view your pictures anymore..... weird. (did I mention this board is WHACKO??) ha. (PS.. it was a nice photo by the way! THANKS.)

 

PS ladies.. thanks for getting BACK to John Wayne in here too!! ha. :-)

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Can you get in to see them today, Kathy? I am not having any trouble clicking them, but if others are, I will try to repost them.

 

If you can click them, hopefully photobucket will kick in and you can see really huge pictures of Ben from Mighty Joe Young and a terribly good looking publicity still from around the same time period.

 

Ben has bedroom eyes.

 

sigh

 

Message was edited by: JackFavell

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Yep... I can see it all now... and I was able to see it most of the evening last night when I was on here... it was just when I FINALLY got a text box to post my reply... THEN I could not see ANY photos on here at all... (screencaps, pic, nothing... I think it was just a momentary "glitch) ... but all is better now... and our beloved Ben is fully restored.... sigh. :-)

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There's the story about the making of "They Were Expandable". It seems they were shooting a scene and Wayne,who had not served in WW2 , had to salute and Ford didn't like the way he threw the salute. There were some people watching them film and Ford lights into to Wayne about you have no idea how to salute, you never served in the armed forces, and Ford continued to abuse Wayne. Finally Robert Montgomery walked over to Ford, grabbed both sides of the directors chair and said "Don't ever talk to Duke like that again. You ought to be ashamed: The silence was deafening , a break was called and Ford started crying.

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fred-

 

I'm embarrassed to say I read that book not too long ago, but I had not remembered that story. Thanks so much for posting it. I don't know how I could have forgotten it....I feel bad thinking of Pappy crying..... but RM must have been some strong presence to be able to get a reaction out of Pappy like that. Paps was really a mush at heart, and I think he pretty much worshipped those who served bravely in the military so it must have been a real shock to him to have RM stand up and talk to him like that.

 

I wanted to bring up Ben and Pappy's relationship again, because earlier in the thread I talked about their "breakup" - when Ford decided not to hire Ben because of some offer his pushy agent had made. I want to clarify that although Ford could be quite nasty _at times,_ there is quite a lot of evidence that he was also a sweetheart at most other times.

 

I have since read that although Ford didn't use him for a number of years, he and Ben continued to have an off screen friendship. I think it speaks to Ford's strengths as a friend that although he pushed and baited some of his players at one time or another, they almost all remained friends wth him and got through that period just fine. Even Henry Fonda, who had had a huge fight with Pappy, was able to eventually forgive, if not forget, and appreciate that Ford had helped him an awful lot.

 

Ben said that although they became friends, he always held a little back from Pappy because he saw how he treated people like Wayne.... Ben said he felt sorry for Paps because he felt that more than anything in the world, Pappy wanted to be one of the boys, joking and laughing with them. But whenever Pappy walked up to a group of people - the crew or the stunt men probably, (the folks that Ford most wanted to be like) everyone would suddenly stop talking and shooting the breeze. Ben said it was kind of a sad thing that because of Ford's aura, he could never be "one of the gang".

 

Photobucket

Thomas Mitchell, John Ford, Clark Gable, Robert Montgomery, And John Wayne.

 

Message was edited by: JackFavell because captions are important, no matter how famous the people in the photo are.

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There's the story of Thomas Mitchell when he was shooting "Stagecoach" and Ford was yelling at Mitchell about something or other, Mitchell had been around to long to be intimated by Ford, looked at him and said. "Just remember I saw "Mary of Scotland". That shut Ford up...

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>

> With an autograph book in my hand and instructions for signing while I was out cold. :)

 

There you go, always thinking ahead. ;)

 

Fred! I love that story about Thomas Mitchell, it always makes me laugh. :D

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> {quote:title=fredbaetz wrote:}{quote}

> There's the story of Thomas Mitchell when he was shooting "Stagecoach" and Ford was yelling at Mitchell about something or other, Mitchell had been around to long to be intimated by Ford, looked at him and said. "Just remember I saw "Mary of Scotland". That shut Ford up...

 

I think I heard that one before somewhere, wasn't it mentioned in Directed by John Ford or some documentary? :)

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