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The Film Legacy Of Wyatt Earp

I know you’ll enjoy Kevin Costner as Wyatt Earp when you watch tonight at 8 p.m. on AMC.  But did you know that the man was an American farmer, teamster sometime buffalo  hunter, officer of the law in various Western  frontier towns, gambler, saloon -keeper, and miner?

The story of Earp follows a long tradition in the movies, too:

Frontier Marshall (1934) Interestingly, the changed Earp first name in this tribute.  George O’Brien played him as Michael Earp.  Doesn’t quite have the same ring.

Tombstone, The Town Too Tough To Die (1942) Richard Dix, one of a handful of actors to make a smooth transition from silents to the talkies, stars as Earp.

My Darling Clementine (1946) The legendary Henry Fonda plays a thoughtful Earp.  And the always terrific Walter Brennan gives a bang-up performance Old Man Clanton.

Gunfight at the O.K. Corral (1957) Burt Lancaster tops a star-studded cast that included Kirk Douglas and Dennis Hopper.  Leon Uris, the novelist, penned the screenplay.

Hour of the Gun (1967) James Garner starred as Earp here.  After playing Maverick on TV in the late 1950s, he was more than ready for the role.

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