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There’s something about this blog I’ve always been uncomfortable with. Through DVD/Blu-Ray new release information or reviews, by plugging a Kickstarter campaign to restore something, or by mentioning a book that’s on the way (including mine), I have a tiny influence on people’s buying decisions. I work in Marketing and Advertising and do this every day, so I ought to be OK with it, but it’s different at this more informal, semi-personal level. Over the years, I’ve gotten to know quite a few of you, and I make a point of not telling my friends how to spend their money.

Having said all that, now I want to tell you how to spend your money. Not really, but kinda.

Back in the 90s, before 50s Westerns took over my life, I used to watch a lot of old Poverty Row horror and 60s spy movies (especially those goofy European James Bond ripoffs). A great source for such things was a company in Oregon called Sinister Cinema. Maybe you’re familiar with them. A friend and I (how ya doing, DV?) ordered from them quite a bit (it was VHS back then) or would rent their stuff from a mail-order place called Video Vault. 

Nowadays, Sinister Cinema deals in DVDs, of course, and they’ve taken a real shine to B Westerns of the 30s and 40s. You’ll find some terrific pictures on their site, from Hoot Gibson to Bob Steele to Ken Maynard. And some titles I’d been looking for decent copies of — Riders Of The Whistling Skull (1937), Hell Canyon Outlaws (1957) and A Lust To Kill (1958).

The folks at Sinister Cinema are talking about shutting down. First, I’d hate to see that happen because old movie nuts aren’t supporting them like we should. So I encourage you to visit their site. Click on the logo above, and away you go! And I highly recommend Hell Canyon Outlaws. (Click the lobby card up top for that link.) It was directed by Paul Landres and has a great part for Dale Robertson. Sinister’s copy is from a well-worn 16mm print, but it’s very watchable. It’s full-frame, so if your TV will let you zoom a bit, you can approximate its 1.85 framing.

And since these titles are less than $10 each, I don’t feel so bad about trying to make you part with your dough. You might even thank me for it.

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This coronavirus mess has many of us stuck in our homes, whether we want to be or not. I’ve been using some of that time to make some progress on 50 Westerns From The 50s, the book-in-progress that is this blog’s namesake.

Thought it would be fun to “sneak preview” some of the 50s Westerns (50 of ’em) the book will highlight (with a chapter dedicated to each). So click on the old ad up top and you’ll be transported to the book’s Facebook page. The ad says 8:40PM, and who am I to argue with Hollywood circa 1957? The first one will appear on Facebook at that time tonight (Eastern Standard Time).

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Happy Trails.

The Apple MacBook Pro responsible for the heavy lifting on this blog and A Million Feet Of Film has reached the end of the trail.

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When researching and writing my first book A Million Feet Of Film: The Making Of One-Eyed Jacks, the Facebook page I created for it turned out to be a real godsend. Through that page, I secured several images used in the book and even lined up a couple interviews.

So with this blog’s namesake a priority these days, it seemed like time to create a similar page for it. You’ll find it at facebook.com/50WesternsFromThe50s

There’s not much there yet, but there will be.

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This month, 50 Westerns From The 50s hits its 10th anniversary.

A few numbers. This is post #1,334. There have been 2.5 million views. It’s followed by over 200 people. To all of you out there who’ve made that happen, a big fat thanks.

Now let’s mount up for another 10 years on the trail.

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This morning, 50s Westerns From The 50s got its two millionth view. A big fat thanks to all of you who mosey through this place.

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A West Doc H

Let’s all congratulate Jerry Entract of the UK for being the first to come through with the correct answer(s) to the trivia question.

What was Edwin L. Marin’s wife’s name?
Ann Morriss

What show was she in that was based on a Randolph Scott film that Marin directed?
Colt .45. There was also a show based on Sugarfoot (1951), which Marin also directed.

And who played Doc Holliday in the episode she appeared in?
Adam West. Incidentally, West played Holliday in an episode of Sugarfoot, too.

The response was great, and everyone who wrote in got it right. These contests are fun. I won’t wait another million hits for the next one.

This is way off topic, but I’m so stoked about West’s Batman series coming to DVD and Blu-ray.

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scott fort worth

A million hits calls for some kinda something. So how about a trivia contest? This one’s complicated, so read carefully.

Director Edwin L. Marin’s last eight features were Westerns, six of them starring Randolph Scott. Marin died in May 1951, just before the release of Fort Worth. (That’s Randy on the set.)

After his death, Marin’s actress wife returned to work, and eventually appeared in an episode of a TV show based on a Scott Western (that Marin directed).

Here’s the question, which is in three parts:
What was Marin’s wife’s name?
What show was she in that was based on a Scott film that Marin directed?
And who played Doc Holliday in the episode she appeared in?

Email your answers to fiftieswesterns@gmail [dot] com. The first person to come through with all three parts correct will win the Randolph Scott triple-feature DVD: Fort Worth (1951), Colt .45 (1950) and Tall Man Riding (1955). The first two were directed by Edwin Marin, the third’s from Lesley Selander.

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wayne348

It’s not a 50s Western, but two of our favorites are in it, and this saloon fight has to be one of the best ever filmed. So, to commemorate this blog reaching 1,000,000 hits, here’s John Wayne and Randolph Scott in The Spoilers (1942). They might not reach a million hits in this six-minute sequence, but they certainly beat the crap out of each other.

To each and every one of you behind all those hits here at 50 Westerns From The 50s, my sincere thanks. I never imagined this crazy thing would ever see such a milestone.

So, to celebrate, and to honor my all-time favorite actor, Randolph Scott, let’s have another Trivia Contest. The question will appear, as a new post, tomorrow at noon (Eastern Standard Time).

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RKO Dragnet big producer

I believe this is the RKO Ranch in Encino, as it appears in the 1954 Dragnet episode “The Big Producer.” It’s a good one, one of the best in my opinion, about a washed-up silent movie producer reduced to peddling pornography. There’s a strong Sunset Boulevard (1950) vibe to it, with Jack Webb and Ben Alexander joined by Ralph Moody, Martin Milner and Carolyn Jones.

This seems like a good way to plug The Jack Webb Blogathon happening over at my other place, The Hannibal 8. It’s running through the weekend (beginning on Friday, naturally), and some great folks are contributing (including our friend Laura and my daughter Presley). Stop by if you get a chance.

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