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Author Topic: Woody Strode  (Read 14805 times)
Tim
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« on: November 24, 2006, 12:47:53 PM »

  I just finished reading "Goal Dust: The Warm and Candid Memoirs of a Pioneer Black Athlete and Actor," Woody Strode's autobiography and thought I'd bring up some of the more interesting things I noticed.  Much of the book focused on Strode's football and wrestling adventures, but I thought the parts dealing with his Hollywood days were the most interesting.

  Once Upon a Time in the West: I figure people might know about this, but most of it was news to me.  Even though Sergio didn't speak english much on set, he got along great with Strode.  Woody's scene at Cattle Corner with the water dripping onto his hat was improvised when Leone saw it happening in between takes.  Leone loved it and shot it, the way we see it today.

  Originally, Strode had a squib in his shirt for when Harmonica shoots him.  But it was decided that it was too graphic and was left out of the American version.  For those who have seen the Italian version, is there a squib?

  And lastly for OUATITW, the Indian woman who runs out of the train station when Strode, Elam, and Muloch arrive is none other than Woody's wife, Luana.  So make sure to notice that next time!

  Major Dundee: Most people know that Peckinpah wanted Strode for the part of Aesop, a role that eventually went to Brock Peters.  Peckinpah said Strode was too much of a "mongrel" because he was too light-skinned with his Indian and African-American blood.

  But what I didn't know was that Peckinpah's comment almost drove Strode out of the business.  Woody was so insulted he almost decided to never make another movie.  Thankfully, he kept making movies.

  There's a ton of other great stuff about Strode including his parts in Spartacus, TMWSLV, The Professionals, and several more if anyone's interested.  I found a copy at my local library by accident, wasn't even looking for it.  Really though, I have that much more respect for Strode and what he went through after reading this book.  He'll always be one of my favorite character actors.

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« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2006, 04:33:45 PM »

Thanks Tim. Fascinating stuff...

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« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2006, 04:34:56 PM »

I'd love to see that shot of Woody getting shot using a squib.  Cool

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Tim
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« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2006, 10:44:22 AM »

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I'd love to see that shot of Woody getting shot using a squib.   

  That was my reaction, Peace.  Reading the book, this was the first time I'd even heard mention of a squib in the Cattle Corner scene.  It would definitely be interesting to see the scene w/ a squib after all those times without one.

 

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« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2006, 11:11:14 AM »

  That was my reaction, Peace.  Reading the book, this was the first time I'd even heard mention of a squib in the Cattle Corner scene.  It would definitely be interesting to see the scene w/ a squib after all those times without one.

 

You know what would be really cool?

Seeing Frank get shot with a squib! That will make his point of dyin' all the more sweeter.  Cool

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« Reply #5 on: November 26, 2006, 06:45:43 PM »



  And lastly for OUATITW, the Indian woman who runs out of the train station when Strode, Elam, and Muloch arrive is none other than Woody's wife, Luana.  So make sure to notice that next time!



 



Yes and as I hear she is a princess of some kind. native American perhaps? Or Hawaiin?

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Tim
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« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2006, 09:15:20 PM »

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Yes and as I hear she is a princess of some kind. native American perhaps? Or Hawaiin?

  Correct, Firecracker.  She has royal Hawaiian blood dating back to the kings of the island, can't remember when and I already returned the book.  But she was definitely a princess.

  Sounds like she iniated the relationship with Woody Strode too.  She pursued him from the moment they met.  Grin

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« Reply #7 on: November 27, 2006, 06:11:17 AM »

That's interesting.  I've been a fan of Woody's for some time - one of the first really famous black stars, he came this close to being a superstar in the '60s.  A cool guy and a very talented actor as well.  I will always remember him for "Sergeant Rutledge", standing up to the racist court, that was IMO the high point of his career.  I also love "The Professionals" and his smaller parts in "Spartacus" and "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance" and of course his cameo in OUATITW - I always loved his sawed-off Winchester rifle, and after all he was the only guy to get a shot off at Bronson.  Cool

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« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2007, 06:06:47 AM »

Never watch Quick and the Dead on US cable. It will piss you off! Strode's last cameo at the beginning gets cut every time. What a final insult to a great actor who endured a lifetime of insults.

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cigar joe
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« Reply #9 on: May 27, 2007, 08:56:46 AM »

It was a travesty for sure, Pat Hingle (who I liked from Hang 'em High) had a bigger part. It was just a dumb movie pretty much all around, they forgot how to make a Western. The Proposition is 100 times better.

Another Woody Strode film to check out is Black Jesus

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« Reply #10 on: May 27, 2007, 09:06:03 AM »

It was a travesty for sure, Pat Hingle (who I liked from Hang 'em High) had a bigger part. It was just a dumb movie pretty much all around, they forgot how to make a Western. The Proposition is 100 times better.

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   I felt the exact opposite, liked the pace and story in Quick, but I couldn't make it halfway thru Proposition. That movie just dragged on. I usually like Guy Pierce, but not that time.

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cigar joe
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« Reply #11 on: May 27, 2007, 09:35:53 AM »

It (TQ&TD was just a bit too contrived, plus it seriousy lacked that essential element that should be a part of every Western, the landscape.

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« Reply #12 on: May 27, 2007, 09:42:32 AM »

Yeah, it was a strange oater, but Raime is a strange director.

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« Reply #13 on: May 27, 2007, 04:57:30 PM »

Strode is a legend. Love his roles in past classic films.

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« Reply #14 on: May 28, 2007, 06:14:15 AM »

Remember seeing his obit, far to brief for all the stuff he was in. Seems to be, all he'll be remembered for is Spartacus, as far as the press is concerned. Strode's career parallels the work of another fine Af.Amer. actor: Noble Johnson, who was in 100s of Hollywood films, such as King Kong, and a lot of DeMille films, and was allowed to speak some lines toward the end of his career. Very sad.

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