Payday Loans
Richard Boone (1917-1981)

  1. Stuart Randall, Pony Soldier, 1952.      Odd title  for a tale of a Mountie…  Boone contracted pneumonia (a usual Fox excuse  for something else) and the Texan Randall took over as the Native Canadian Cree chief, Standing Bear.  The role was revoiced. Anonymously.   Boone would be offered a native American tribal chief again…
  2. James Dean, Giant, 1955.
  3. Eddie Firestone, Bailout at 43,000, 1956.   Instead of joining test pilot John Payne, Boone had to bale out of this movie because of another.
  4. Ricardo Montalban, Cheyenne Autumn, 1964.    No one gives  director John  Ford orders. Why should he cast Boone and Anthony Quinn as Indians just because they had some native American blood, when he had two Mexican pals like Montalban and Gilbert Roland.
  5. Guy Stockwell, The War Lord, 1965.      Difficult to believe but  big bad Boone’s  cousin is... pretty,  sweet Pat Boone!
  6. Paul Newman, Hombre, 1966.    Selling this book to Fox allowed Elmore Leonard to freelance and become the writer he is today. He sent the book to Boone, who had been in The Tall T, Leonard’s first filmed novel (from his Argosy magazine novelette, The Captives). Boone, said Leonard, was “the only actor who has ever spoken my lines the way I wrote them.”  He spoke them here not, alas, in the titular role but as the villainous Cicero Grimes.
  7. Jack Lord, Hawaii Five-0, TV, 1968-1980.     Even though Boone lived on Hawaii, he still said no when creator Leonard Freeman called him after Gregory Peck passed on island cop Steve McGarrett.  Besides, one series was enough for Boone - after his iconic Paladin in Have Gun, Will Travel, 1967.
  8. William Holden, The Wild Bunch, 1968.  
  9.  Marlon  Brando,  The Night  of the Following  Day, 1969.       Boone replaced a busy Yves Montand, until Brando’s ex-agent Jay Kanter joined the production with, inevitably, Brando in tow. Boone took another role and joined  Brando in  banishing  director Hubert Cornfield. Marlon called him Herbert -  “he makes me wanna throw up.”  Boone, after discussing one scene,  told Cornfield: "Makes about  as  much  sense as a  rat  fucking a  grapefruit." Brando insisted Boone direct  the final  fortnight's  shooting.  His style worked:   “Hey asshole, it’s me.  Don’t pull that shit on me. Quit phoning in your lines.”
  10. Chief Dan George, Little Big Man.  1970.     Among points raised in  Thomas Berger’s novel was that  white actors were rarely convincing as  native Americans.  Director Arthur Penn must have  missed that page as he started wooing great Shakesperians Laurence Olivier and Paul Scofield to play… Old Lodge Skins.   Next? Boone and Marlon Brando. Finally, the lightbulb flickered and Penn decided upon  the genuine article: the 1951-1963 chief of the Burrard Band of North Vancouver (now the  Tsleil-Waututh First Nation). He won an Oacar nomination for beautifully intoning, among other lines, the one pinched by Star Trek’s Klingons): “Today is a good day to die.”
  11. Robert Shaw,  The Sting,  1973.       “Such a drunk at that point,” said producer Julia Phillips,  “that he doesn’t even respond to the offer.”  Director George Roy Hill had the role beefed up for  him.  He finally refused -  two weeks before shooting. Shaw’s limp was no looka-me gimmick - he’d hurt his leg playing racquetball.
  12. Jackie Gleason, Smokey and  the Bandit, 1977.  Universal wanted Boone. Burt Reynolds insisted upon Gleason - and Sally Field - in what was one of  Hitchcock’s favourite movies. Honestly!

 





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