John Wayne shot his co-star in the back off set – and was reminded of it in his will
In 1929, John Wayne had a small uncredited role in the American Football film Salute. It would be the start of his lifelong relationship with legendary director John Ford – but it also forged a friendship with fellow actor Ward Bond who, for one of the only times in their careers, received higher billing than The Duke. They starred together in another sporting epic, 1936’s boxing film Conflict, before both becoming grizzled staples in numerous Westerns like Fort Apache, Rio Bravo and The Quiet Man, as well as The Searchers. Bond was at the height of his fame, starring in smash hit TV show Wagon Train, when he suddenly died in November 1960.
Bond never achieved the legendary heights of his close friend, but he is still remembered for roles in some of Hollywood’s greatest films of all time like Gone With the Wind, The Grapes of Wrath, The Maltese Falcon and It’s a Wonderful Life.