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Cal
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« on: November 11, 2002, 07:20:36 PM »

Since this is a brand new board, I figured I'd start some posts.

It's been written that the role of Harmonica was originally for Clint Eastwood.  Though this film is perfect as is, the idea of Eastwood in this role has always intrigued me, offering more insight into the past of The Man With No Name. ANyone have any thoughts on this?

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Renny
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« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2002, 02:25:14 PM »

It would have been a perfect role for Clint. His biggest mistake to refuse this one ( if he did). But let's not forget it's the best performance of Bronsons career.

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« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2002, 07:40:29 PM »

Yeah Bronson was good but with the exception of the harmonica, Bronson is almost acting as if he was playing Clint's Man with no Name character, IMHO. Although I think it was a good career move on Clint's part (not to do a 4th Italian western), it would have been great to see him do the part. It would have explained why he is the way he was in the movies, becoming a bouty hunter, etc. Plus, i'd bet had Eastwood excepted the role, the film may have done better at the box office. By the time this film came out, Eastwod mania was quite strong.

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« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2002, 04:05:17 AM »

Yes it would have been intriguing to have Clint in the role of Harmonica, but I think that Bronson acted superbly and Eastwood would not have bettered his performance. Rememeber though that Clint, Lee Van, and Eli were offered the roles of the gunmen who get shot down just after the credits. Lee Van and Eli agreed, Clint refused. To me that would have been very intriguing! To shoot Clint down after the credits would have been audacious at that time and even thinking about it now seems a bit crazy, but what made Leone a great artist and director was his ability to surprise and also to downplay violence. After he got away from the 'Dollar films he became more reflective and his greatness shone through. Even with 'The Good...The Bad he showed the futility of war. Anyway what do you think?

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Cal
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« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2002, 06:53:06 AM »

I heard about the opening sequence and if that is true, I am glad Clint turned it down. Why would Clint want to do something like that when he was already offered the lead role and at this point already very successful. I am actually surprised the other 2 agreed to do it.  That whole scenerio would not have made much sense since Lee Van Cleef;s character was killed and Clint and Tuco parted ways after GBU. So to have all 3 of them together at the beginning of OUATITW would have been strange to see.

And besides...come on, there is no way in hell Bronson would ever be faster on the draw than Clint!!  Cool

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« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2002, 01:09:48 PM »

Well in response to that Sergio's angle on having Clint, Lee and Eli as the gunmen was to blast away the 'Dollar' style films and usher in a new,more serious film. I agree that Clint is faster than Bronson though!

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« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2002, 05:46:35 AM »

I heard about the opening sequence and if that is true, I am glad Clint turned it down. Why would Clint want to do something like that when he was already offered the lead role and at this point already very successful. I am actually surprised the other 2 agreed to do it.  That whole scenerio would not have made much sense since Lee Van Cleef;s character was killed and Clint and Tuco parted ways after GBU. So to have all 3 of them together at the beginning of OUATITW would have been strange to see.

And besides...come on, there is no way in hell Bronson would ever be faster on the draw than Clint!!  Cool

Well,the three men wouldn't have been the same characters that they were in GBU.After all,Eastwood's character always had different name in the dollar films and no references to other dollar movies were made in any of the three.

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Shobary
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« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2002, 01:53:23 PM »

Ever thought who would have done wich part.
I'd say Tuco as Jack Elam. (With the fly)
Cleef as Al Mullock.
Clint as Woody Strode. (Hat-water)
Strode get a shot in Bronson so would Clint have.  Wink

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« Reply #8 on: December 04, 2002, 05:44:45 AM »

That's great, Shobary! As many times as I'd heard about Eastwood, Wallach and Van Cleef being asked to do that scene, I'd never thought of who would play which role. You're entirely right. Wallach would be wonderful in comic interplay with the buzzing fly. (I can just imagine his wonderful leering grin as he traps it in the gun barrel!) Van Cleef would exude icy cool as he cracked his knuckles, perhaps giving us a better look at that right hand of his, the one with the missing finger joint. And Eastwood would be wonderful in the falling water droplet bit. (Can't ya just see his scowl as the first drops strike his hat?) I also love the idea of him being the only one of the three that manages to get off a shot before being struck down by Harmonica's bullets.

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« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2002, 06:31:57 PM »

An important point has been over looked. During the shooting of GBU, Clint became frustrated with Leone and visa versa. Clint hated the fact that Leone made him smoke those cigars. As I understand it, Leone knew he hated it and would do take after take, just to anger Eastwood. During the post-production faze, Clint, from what I understand, refused to do looping but after urging by his agent and a review of his contract, he reluctantly agreed. On Leone's part, In Leoneís defense, he had made Clint into a international star (and really he did) and felt that may Clint didnít appreciate this fact nor did he respect Leone as a director anymore. Leone saw Clintís desire not to smoke anymore as being difficult and a symbolic spit in the face.
I think that is main reason why he didnít take the lead role (if it was offered him. As many of you have mentioned, Leone offered the GOOD, the BAD and the UGLY the role of the gunfighters who get spanked). It doesnít make much sense. Why would Leone offer Clint the lead and then the role of the gunfighter. The only thing I can think about is the later offer was a way to get back at Eastwood, to say look Iím going to kill you off since you didnít take my first offer. Who knows!


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« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2003, 12:03:54 PM »

I don't know about this talk of Clint being a better Harmonica than Bronson.  It would have given the character a much different personality, I think.  Clint's stoicism could not have equalled Bronson's.  Harmonica was rugged, tough, intelligent, witty, AND clean-shaven.  I can't picture a Harmonica with a scruffy face, thus I can't picture Clint doing it.

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shorty larsen
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« Reply #11 on: February 17, 2003, 01:25:40 PM »

I think Clint was not the right actor for the role.

Let me explain why I think this.

You can notice that in every Leone film there's always a carachter tortured by his past, or maybe a carachter who MUST fix his past: Lee Van Cleef and the vengeance of his sister in For a few dollars more, Tuco and his brother who reminds him his "past", Henri Fonda trying to escape t oEurope and forget his past in "My name is nobody" (even if it's not a Leone movie); James coburn escaping from his irish past in "Duck you sucker", Noodles also in OUTA. It's the same thing in OUTW. Harmonica MUST kill Frank and revenge his rother in order to fix the past.

Now, Clint was always the "name with no name", and only that. The caracters tortured by the past were always attributed by Leone to others actors, "better" actors maybe, just maybe.

In this sense, I can't really see Clint playing the role of Harmonica. Clint was always someone whom we didn't know nothing. But has Clint a really talent to play this kind of role? I thing Leone was extremely rigourous and stick with his ideas and stories.

Ok, Bronson is not an excelent actor, but it filled the roled very well. Clint's period was just history...

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« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2005, 07:36:37 PM »

  I'm reviving an old post as I travel through the messageboard and came across this diddy.

  I think Charles Bronson was the perfect choice for Harmonica.  He had that world weary look down perfectly with his longer, greasy hair and ratty clothes.  Overall, I just don't think Eastwood would have been right for the part although it would have been interesting to see what he did with the role.

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« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2005, 06:21:14 PM »

i agree... i think bronson is perfect for the part, i think eastwood is good as the semi-comical western anti-hero the man with no name, but i don't think he would have cut it as the super serious man out for revenge.

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« Reply #14 on: January 30, 2005, 08:30:42 AM »

i agree... i think bronson is perfect for the part, i think eastwood is good as the semi-comical western anti-hero the man with no name, but i don't think he would have cut it as the super serious man out for revenge.
precisely.

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