Alan Hale

  1. George Tobias, Torrid Zone, 1939.     Prepping the fourth of  five James Cagney movies,  director William Keighley tested  Hale, Joseph Calleia, George Reeves and Victor Varconi for Rosario.  But it was Tobias who said: “Senor Butler, I congratulate myself on your bad shooting.”  
  2. Ward Bond, The Maltese Falcon, 1940.    In the (bulky) frame with Charles Wilson for Tom Polhaus, the detective picking up the falcon: “Heavy. What is it?” Bogie’s Sam Spade replies: “The, uh, stuff that dreams are made of.”  “Huh?” says Polhaus. 
  3. Regis Toomey, Law of the Tropics, 1940.   Hale wasn’t so hearty when replaced by Toomey in the B-movie, hardly worthy of top-billed Constance Bennett. She admitted she only did it for the (rainy day) money.
  4. Nigel Bruce, This Above All, 1941.     Ya can’t always get wot ya wanna…  Darryl F Zanuck had such tight control at Fox that Bruce was the only one of eight casting suggestions made by director Anatole Litvak that DFZ approved. Title stemmed from the Polonious soliloquy in Hamlet: This above all: to thine own self be true… As John Wayne could have told you; he could recite the entire play.  With more pauses than Shakespeare intended!
  5. Jim Backus, One Last Fling, 1948.     A screen debut for Backus when Errol Flynn and his usual sidekick, Alan Hale, passed on the weak comedy. (They co-starred in 13 other movies). Zachary Scott replacing Flynn was akin to Cheetah subbing King Kong.

 Birth year: 1892Death year: 1950Other name: Casting Calls:  5