John Wayne ‘spent the night shaking’ over The Alamo concerns
The epic was a film Wayne not only starred in, but also directed.
In an episode of BBC’s Talking Pictures, footage of Wayne talking to Robert Robinson on the programme Picture Parade during the same decade was shown, in which he reflected on The Alamo.
He was asked about the film’s three-hour length and why it had to be so long.
“Well, I felt that it needed to be that long,” he replied, detailing why the characters had to be explored.
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“Most of the men came in as just healthy, rough, lusty men of the period.”
“They’re always the more interesting, aren’t they?” asked Robert.
“Oh, always,” the actor replied as Robert went on to question Wayne about his responsibilities.
“But anyway, you had these three major responsibilities. Did they worry you?” he asked.
“Not until after I was about halfway through the picture,” Wayned confessed.
“I’ll tell you something, when you first start off, you’re kind of a lamb, you know, in a thing like this.
“And I just assumed that I would have no troubles. About halfway through the picture, I realised that although I had known my crew for years, and knew each personality, I hadn’t known Mr Harvey and I hadn’t known Mr Widmark, and whether or not we would chemically adjust to each other.
“And about halfway through, when everything was going well, and I realised how well it was going.
“I started thinking what could have happened, and I spent a night shaking, I’ll tell you!”
Despite John’s concerns, the film was a huge success and was nominated for seven Academy Awards.
It went on to win six of the 15 accolades, including Best Sound and Top Action Drama.
John Wayne himself also won many accolades and is remembered as one of the best in Hollywood.
However, his career wasn’t free of drama.
Although he co-starred opposite Christopher Mitchum, Robert Mitchum’s son, in a couple of Westerns, the pair had a huge falling out.
Soon after Big Jake was released, Wayne and Christopher appeared together on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson on June 7, 1972.
Duke was well known as a staunch and uncompromising conservative and during the TV interview, they disagreed on a political issue of the day.
Their conversion ended by talking about environmentalism, which the Western legend wasn’t in favour of.
It was his belief that if you were an environmentalist, then you were against business. And if you were against business, then you were a liberal.