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Marie Windsor, ’50s femme fatale and John Wayne co-star, was warned to repent for playing evil on screen: book – My Blog

Marie Windsor was so convincing at playing bad that many people thought the devil would get her.The actress, who was crowned “Queen of the B’s” for starring in numerous film noirs, Westerns and low-budget flicks, is now the subject of a book recently written by Denise Noe titled “A Sheep in Wolf’s Clothing: The Life of Marie Windsor.” The biography, written with the blessing of Windsor’s son Rick Hupp, explores Windsor’s humble beginnings in Utah, her rise in Hollywood and how she was unlike the villains she famously played on-screen.Windsor passed away in 2000 at age 80.

Denise Noe has written a book on the life and career of actress Marie Windsor titled "A Sheep in Wolf's Clothing."

Denise Noe has written a book on the life and career of actress Marie Windsor titled “A Sheep in Wolf’s Clothing.” (BearManor Media)
“Marie Windsor contributed so very much to the entertainment industry,” Noe told Fox News Digital. “She didn’t have a messy private life, but she still had a very interesting life. She did a lot of important movies. And I was surprised that no one had written a biography on her yet. Before I decided to write the book, I wanted to make sure that her son would cooperate. I also talked to some people who worked with Marie – some are no longer with us – but they gave wonderful accounts of her life. I felt it was important to share.”

Marie Windsor made her mark in Westerns and film noirs.
Marie Windsor made her mark in Westerns and film noirs. (Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images)
“Part of the reason why she isn’t as well known today was that she was the ‘Queen of the B’s,’” Noe shared. “She wasn’t often in A-list movies. She also wasn’t in the tabloids – she did not have the sensational private life that some other stars had at the time. The reason why the title is ‘A Sheep in Wolf’s Clothing’ is because she was a very ethical, kind person who often played very evil characters.”Windsor’s story starts in Marysvale, Utah, a small farming community where she was born Emily Marie Bertelsen in 1919. At age 11, her parents would drive 30 miles over dirt roads just so she could take acting lessons. After winning two local beauty pageants and focusing on drama at Brigham Young University, Windsor’s parents drove their daughter to Hollywood, where she studied with no-nonsense acting instructor Maria Ouspenskaya.
Marie Windsor, circa 1950, resided at the Hollywood Studio Club, whose residents included Marilyn Monroe and Donna Reed.
Marie Windsor, circa 1950, resided at the Hollywood Studio Club, whose residents included Marilyn Monroe and Donna Reed. (Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images)
During the day, Windsor was at the Hollywood Studio Club, whose residents included Marilyn Monroe and Donna Reed. At night, she worked as a cigarette girl at the Mocambo nightclub. While she made her film debut in 1941’s “All-American Coed,” it wouldn’t be until the ‘50s that Windsor began skyrocketing to fame. She both terrified and delighted audiences in subsequent roles as “the blunt, beautiful dame with the bedroom eyes who was rotten to the core and didn’t care who knew it,” The New York Times reported.It turned out many, to her horror, insisted Windsor was the real deal.“People would send her actual copies of the Bible where they underlined the sins her characters had committed,” Noe explained. “Sometimes they would just send her Bible verses with letters warning her to repent, or she would go to hell. It may sound kind of funny today that these people couldn’t tell the distinction between the character and the performer, but she was really scared. She was very disturbed and frightened by what these letters had to say and how they were written. She had to turn some of those materials over to the police because people were confusing her for being the gangster moll, the gunslinger, this evil femme fatale.”
Marie Windsor was so good at playing bad she started receiving handwritten letters warning her that she needed to repent quickly.
Marie Windsor was so good at playing bad she started receiving handwritten letters warning her that she needed to repent quickly. (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
“The fact that people were sending Bibles to her and underlining what they felt she had done wrong really frightened her,” Noe continued. “It indicated that the person was seeing her as this evil person. But Marie wasn’t like any of the characters she played. Luckily, she wasn’t the victim of any stalkers.”Windsor once told Classic Images, a film magazine: “Fans would send me Bibles with specific verses underscored and accompanied by handwritten warnings that the devil would get me and I’d go to hell if I didn’t reform.”Windsor was concerned about being typecast as “a dragon lady,” which compelled her to go under the knife.
Marie Windsor, worried about being typecast, went under the knife to soften her features.
Marie Windsor, worried about being typecast, went under the knife to soften her features. (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
“It was one of the reasons she had a nose job,” said Noe. “It wasn’t that much of a nose job – it was really to remove a bump on her nose. But she thought this will help her get more sympathetic parts. She would later say that she sometimes regretted getting that nose job because she thought maybe it had done the opposite. But the thing about Marie is that she had very large eyes that looked sort of predatory with a very sensual mouth. She was tall – at 5 foot 9, she would tower over her male co-stars. And those were some of the things that made her a femme fatale, a gunslinger. It wouldn’t be until later that she played maternal roles or the loving housewife.”
Charles McGraw, left, Marie Windsor and Don Beddoe in a scene from director Richard Fleischer's 1952 film "The Narrow Margin."
Charles McGraw, left, Marie Windsor and Don Beddoe in a scene from director Richard Fleischer’s 1952 film “The Narrow Margin.” (RKO Radio Pictures/Getty Images)
There was one star she quickly impressed on set – John Wayne. They did three films together: 1949’s “The Fighting Kentuckian,” 1953’s “Trouble Along the Way” and 1973’s “Cahill U.S. Marshal.”“She liked John Wayne,” said Noe. “She always said he was really nice to work with. She really enjoyed working with him. And I think that one of the reasons she got so many Western parts was that she had experience as a horsewoman. She had ridden horses during her upbringing in Utah. She was comfortable on a horse and knew how to twirl a gun, but also appeared ultra feminine and desirable. She described how John Wayne played a version of himself, so his persona was pretty close to him as a person.”
John Wayne and Marie Windsor on the set of "Cahill U.S. Marshal," directed by Andrew V. McLaglen, on Nov. 29, 1972, in Los Angeles, California.
John Wayne and Marie Windsor on the set of “Cahill U.S. Marshal,” directed by Andrew V. McLaglen, on Nov. 29, 1972, in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
“She did remark that John Garfield and George Raft were the only two male actors she worked with who weren’t bothered by the fact she was taller than they were,” Noe pointed out. “She complimented them for being secure enough that they weren’t bothered by it. Her height was often disguised in films. She would do special tricks, like dancing with her knees bent in a scene, so she wasn’t towering over her male co-star.”Windsor also worked with a young Stanley Kubrick in 1956’s “The Killing.”“She loved Stanley Kubrick,” said Noe. “She found him to be very kind, patient and sensitive. She really enjoyed working with him. She respected him as a director who had an eye for detail. She thought he was just brilliant. And he respected her greatly.”
Elisha Cook Jr. as George Peatty with Marie Windsor as his wife Sherry, in a still from the 1956 film "The Killing," directed by Stanley Kubrick for United Artists.
Elisha Cook Jr. as George Peatty with Marie Windsor as his wife Sherry, in a still from the 1956 film “The Killing,” directed by Stanley Kubrick for United Artists. (United Artists/Archive Photos/Getty Images)
But Windsor’s greatest role was that of mom. At one point, she put her Hollywood career on hold to completely devote herself to motherhood.“She loved it,” Noe explained. “She went back to taking on roles pretty soon, but all the evidence suggests that she had a successful home life. She loved being a homemaker and taking care of her son. She was also very involved in raising her stepson. Her son told me she always wanted to be in the kitchen making meals for them. She thrived in her domestic life.”
Actresses Chili Williams, left, and Marie Windsor prepare a spaghetti dish. They co-starred in the 1950 film "Frenchie."
Actresses Chili Williams, left, and Marie Windsor prepare a spaghetti dish. They co-starred in the 1950 film “Frenchie.” (Graphic House/Archive Photos/Getty Images)
Windsor led a successful acting career and served as a director for the Screen Actors Guild for 25 years. She also made guest appearances on more than 100 TV shows, including ”Gunsmoke” and ”Murder, She Wrote,” The New York Times reported. But during her final years, she was at peace as a homemaker and painter.
Marie Windsor attends the Sixth Annual Golden Boot Awards on Aug. 19, 1988, at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in Westwood, California. She was married to actor Jack Hupp from 1954 until her death in 2000.
Marie Windsor attends the Sixth Annual Golden Boot Awards on Aug. 19, 1988, at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in Westwood, California. She was married to actor Jack Hupp from 1954 until her death in 2000. (Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
“Marie Windsor was an excellent femme fatale, but if you study her work, you can’t help but be amazed by her versatility,” said Noe. “She would transform herself into these characters. And yet, she was incredibly kind and supportive on set. I think the stars of today can learn so much from her. I hope after this book, people will think more of her when they think of old Hollywood.”

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The Man, the Problem, and His Manliest Movies – My Blog

The problematic John Wayne became a fierce force in American cinema as the designated leading man in a series of big budget films. In an era full of trauma and sadness, Wayne as an American symbol, represents a significant contribution to the world during the time of uncertainty and panic.

As his career elevated in the midst of WWII, he rose through the ranks as the single most popular actor in Hollywood’s history. The reason that Wayne had become increasingly famous was associated with his no-nonsense characters that male viewers related to and women gravitated towards prior to the cultural changes of the 1960s. He brought to light this persona of elevated masculinity that was culturally striking to watch. From Academy Awards to a rich career that very few have been able to achieve, the praise associated with his on-screen portrayals will live on through generations.
In a successful career spanning over 50 years and 169 movies, Wayne has had his highs, in addition to his fair share of criticism, which is ultimately impossible to ignore. During a 1971 Playboy Magazine interview, Wayne made comments speaking negatively against the African-American community and making a series of homophobic slurs, while directly addressing his belief in white supremacy. Some have marked this up to be a time sensitive issue, with societal problems and norms being completely different from what it is now (or is it?). The truth is, this stuff was said, and it hasn’t gone over well since the interview resurfaced, with John Wayne’s legacy denounced by many.
Taking a moment to separate the man from his artistry is quite a difficult task, and directly addressing the controversies of his past comments creates difficult decisions that can often lead to either supporting art and ignoring prejudice, or completely erasing history. What people can all agree on is that his work ultimately changed the scope of Hollywood cinema, and how masculinity and machismo are portrayed through verbal and physical modes of storytelling. Thus, instead of calling these films his ‘best performances,’ perhaps we should consider these movies to have the most macho roles from John Wayne, a problematic actor who presents culture with a fascinating way to dissect American masculinity.

6 The Barbarian and the Geisha

The Barbarian and the Geisha is based on the true story of Townsend Harris, an American diplomat who was sent to the country of Japan in order to serve as a U.S. consul member. Wayne plays Harris as he is met by residents in the small village of Shimoda who rejects his diplomatic status, prompting a cultural split in Japan’s mistrust in the influence of the west. Through all the social and political clashes, Harris meets a 17-year-old geisha by the name of Okichi, falling in love with her while she aides him in softening the division. Wayne was 51 at the time.
5 Tycoon

Hired by a South American tycoon Frederick Alexander (Cedric Hardwicke) to construct a tunnel through the Andes Mountains, American engineer Johnny Munroe (John Wayne) falls in love with Alexander’s daughter, Maura (Laraine Day). As Munroe faces challenges in making progress in the job he was assigned to complete, he also faces opposition in convincing the overprotective father of Maura (and his boss) that he is a worthy suitor for the man’s (20 years younger) daughter. Tycoon, like The Barbarian and the Geisha, feeds the male ego and fantasy of viewers, presenting Wayne (and the all-American male) as a sex symbol for much younger women.
4 Island in the Sky

Island in the Sky incorporates pieces of experiences from pilot Ernest Gann (later related in his 1961 autobiographical book Fate is the Hunter) emphasizing his flying career. In this World War II movie, Gann and the pilots he traveled with search for a lost pilot of the team in northern Canada. In the film, Capt. Dooley (John Wayne) has to crash-land his plane in the icy landscape of Canada. While setting out to fly supplies in England during World War II, Dooley and his crew fight to survive in the unfamiliar territory. Though it’s an ensemble film, Wayne continues his white-knight heroic approach to narrative form.
3 The Three Musketeers

The Three Musketeers, a modernized version of the classic tale, finds American fighter pilot Lt. Tom Wayne (John Wayne) traveling to visit his romantic love interest, Elaine Corday (Ruth Hall). Along the way, he gets involved in the war taking place in the Sahara Desert (between the French Legion and a group of Arabic arms smugglers) to rescue a group of legionnaires who were besieged by the opposition fighters. Tom’s new friends recruit him in order to help them efficiently identify the mole secretly working for the Arabic group, so long as they can survive the desert in an almost ‘characters against nature’ way. Again, the film glorifies and romanticizes the heroics of American militarism and the white-knight trope.
2 Allegheny Uprising

Jim Smith (John Wayne) leads a militant group throughout colonial America, setting out to discover who is supplying the area of Native American tribes with various key weapons. Smith suspects Ralph Callendar (Brian Donlevy) to be the traitor among the group, but there has not yet been any proof to support this theory. He strives to pinpoint the corruption among him and his team, as the British commander Capt. Swanson (George Sanders) disregards his concerns. Allegheny Uprising taps into the American fantasy and paranoia of fighting the British and colonizing Natives, and Wayne fits in perfectly.
1 Rio Lobo

The American Western Rio Lobo is set in a post-Civil War environment, and was the last film directed by the legendary Howard Hawks, concluding his American trilogy of Westerns preceded by Rio Bravo and El Dorado, which all uses the West to explore identity. As Cord McNally (John Wayne), a local Union leader, protects an incoming gold shipment, his fellow troops are suddenly attacked by an influx of Confederate forces. In this encounter, McNally looses the gold he was supposed to protect as well as his friend and officer who was killed in the raid. As McNally travels to the town of Rio Lobo, he learns the Confederate forces had direct help from the inside of his team. In his visit, McNally sets out to learn the identity of the traitors. Released in 1970, Wayne was playing to a wholly different American culture that had passed him by, and the film was a box office failure. He would make his Playboy comments the next year.

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‘He knew he wasn’t going to be around when I was older’ – My Blog

Ethan Wayne, John Wayne’s youngest son, talks about what it was like growing up with his famous father and how he’s keeping his legacy alive today.

Ethan Wayne said a day at his friend’s house made him realize his father was different.
The now-56-year-old is the youngest son of late Hollywood legend John Wayne and Peruvian actress Pilar Pallete, his third and last wife. He’s currently the president of John Wayne Enterprises and director of the John Wayne Cancer Foundation. This year, he helped release a bourbon based on the patriarch’s own recipe.
“I can remember going to a friend’s house and his mom said, ‘Hey Brian, go get the mail,’” recalled Wayne. “I went out and there were three envelopes. I remember going, ‘That’s all the mail you got? That’s weird.’ The US postal service would drag those canvas bags with lots of mail to my house. It was strange.”

Gettin' back in the lane with John Wayne's youngest son | by Jeremy Roberts  | Medium

Despite Wayne having an iconic movie star for a father, he described his childhood as normal — one that involved living in then-small town Newport Beach, Calif. with other families in the same neighborhood, surrounded by oranges and strawberry farms.
There were no security or bodyguards. John answered his own door and telephone. He was an early riser who exercised alongside his son and studied his scripts before heading to work. He often spent his free time on his boat, admiring the great sea he loved. He would catch his own fish and cook it on the beach, as well as interact with locals.
John was 56 when Ethan was born — and he made sure his son never forgot to do chores around the house.
“I can’t pick up a broom to this day without thinking about him coming out and saying, ‘That’s not how you sweep, this is how you sweep!’” chuckled Wayne. “And it was with this big push broom. And he wasn’t very mechanical. He was great with his gun, he was great on a horse and he handled boats really well. But if a car got a flat tire, he’d just leave it. And I was very mechanical as a young boy for some reason. I really enjoyed taking stuff apart and putting it back together. He really didn’t get it. He didn’t like motorcycles, and I did.”
Wayne said that despite his father’s high-profile career, John, who was aware he might be gone by the time his son was a young man, was determined to be a hands-on parent. Wayne described growing up on film sets and learning about the hard work it took to bring Hollywood to life.
“He took with me on location,” Wayne explained. “I’d be homeschooled down on location in Mexico because he knew he wasn’t going to be around for me when I was older, and that he would probably lose me while I was young, teenage man. So he took me with him when I was little. And one of my jobs was to load the car with all the personal items that he wanted with him when he would make a film somewhere remote. Or if he went on his boat, the Wild Goose.
Gettin' back in the lane with John Wayne's youngest son | by Jeremy Roberts  | Medium
“He would take his own bourbon, and that bourbon was the heaviest thing that I would carry. Everyone wanted to have a drink with John Wayne. I would also carry his packs of candy, special food items, shoes, gloves, jackets. Definitely bags of hats.”
In his lifetime, John or “The Duke,” as he was called by fans, made more than 200 films in over 50 years. According to The New York Times, by the early 1960s, 161 of his films had grossed $350 million, and when he died in 1979 he had been paid as much as $666,000 to make a movie.
As an avid outdoorsman, both in front and behind the camera, he is still celebrated as one of the greatest figures of the Western genre.
“I was 10 when he was 66 years old,” said Wayne. “[And] he’s on a horse, he’s running at full speed across open country, with a herd of horses running with him… he was a bold, outgoing individual who was full of life, constantly moving forward… And nobody sits on a horse like John Wayne does.”
John Wayne's son recalls growing up with 'The Duke': 'He knew he wasn't  going to be around when I was older' | Fox News
Wayne wasn’t around when the Iowa native, a former football star in high school who worked as a truck driver, fruit picker, soda jerk and ice hauler, first embarked on his career as an actor. However, Wayne said the rugged persona he embodied on screen was very much the real deal.
“I read stories [of] when he was first starting out and how he was very uncomfortable and felt awkward,” said Wayne. “He didn’t like the way he moved, so he talked to John Ford and met Wyatt Earp… He started taking pieces of these guys and putting them together into a character that became John Wayne, who was definitely part of my father. There was also fantasy. He was a heck of a gunman and a horseman, but he also certainly knew the craft of film and storytelling. We were never in a gunfight.”
John passed away at age 72 from cancer. Wayne, who was 17 at the time of his father’s death, said he drove John to UCLA Medical Center when he wasn’t feeling well. John never came out alive.
Before his death, John stressed to his family that the doctors attempting to find a cure for cancer should never be forgotten. He left behind seven children from his marriages and more than 15 grandchildren.

Wayne credited stuntman Gary McLarty, a friend of his father’s, for taking him under his wing and helping him cope with his grief.
“He would take me on a motorcycle ride or racing sometimes,” said Wayne. “He was [later] the stunt coordinator for ‘The Blues Brothers.’ And for some reason, he hired me. And it was in a time when I’d missed the last part of my junior year with my dad. When my father was involved in my life, I was good at school and things went well. But afterward, I wasn’t very focused on school… [Gary] gave me a little direction that I didn’t have. I’m eternally grateful to him. It probably kept me from making some mistakes.”
John recently lassoed in headlines for a completely different reason. In 2016, The Guardian reported California lawmakers rejected a proposal to create John Wayne Day to mark his birthday after several legislators described statements he made about racial minorities.
Wayne said he was also aware of negative statements made against his father due to him being politically conservative. He insisted John’s beliefs have been misunderstood over the years
“He wanted to work with people who earned their place,” Wayne explained. “He didn’t think anybody should get a job because he was a man, because she was a woman, because they were gay, because they were straight, because they were Chinese, African-American or Mexican. He thought you should get a job because you were the right person to do that job. Because you had skill and talent and you would show up and get the job done. He didn’t care what you were.
“Somebody, a Latina representative up in Sacramento, shot down a bill for John Wayne Day because he was racist. [But] he was married to three Latin women. It’s just crazy how things get blown out of proportion because he was really an open, caring, loyal, supportive man.”
Wayne hopes his father will be remembered for what he was — an artist.
“People look at him and they think one thing or another, but he was out there representing real people,” said Wayne. “Whether they were guys who came out here and lived in the West or went to war. He played those characters. He represented them. And they liked him. They still do.”

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John Wayne’s Son Couldn’t Watch 1 of His Dad’s Movies After His Death – My Blog

John Wayne is a legendary actor who successfully personifies Western movies. He has a very loyal fan base, but some of his critics claim that he plays the same character in every movie. However, Wayne delivered several nuanced performances over the course of his career. His son, Patrick, had difficulty watching one specific movie after his father’s death.

John Wayne starred in over 160 full-length movies
Wayne entered the entertainment industry working as an extra, prop man, and a stuntman. He primarily worked for Fox Film Corporation, but ultimately got his first shot with Raoul Walsh’s The Big Trail. However, the film was a box office failure. Fortunately, Wayne’s huge success at the movies would later come to be.
Wayne ultimately starred in popular Western and war movies over the course of the 1940s onward. Some of his most notable performances include titles such as She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, True Grit, and Sands of Iwo Jima. All together, Wayne starred in over 160 full-length movies over the course of his extensive career.

John Wayne’s son, Patrick, couldn’t watch ‘The Shootist’ after his dad’s death

Jeremy Roberts interviewed Patrick via Medium to talk about what it was like growing up in the Wayne family. He talked about some personal stories involving his father, as well as the collection of Wayne movies. The interviewer asked him if he had any difficulty revisiting any of his dad’s movies after his death.
“I’d have to say no to that question with the exception of one film, The Shootist,” Patrick said. “I couldn’t watch that Western as it was so close to reality. He played an old gunfighter who was an anachronism dying of cancer.”
Wayne plays J.B. Books in The Shootist, who is an aging gunfighter diagnosed with cancer. He heads into Nevada at the turn of the 20th century. Books rents a room from a widowed woman named Bond Rogers (Lauren Becall) and her son, Gillom (Ron Howard). When people pursue Books with questionable motives, he decides that he isn’t going to die a silent death.
Patrick continued: “Too many of the elements in there were just too close to what actually happened to him in his real life, so that film took me about 10 years to watch again [of course I saw it when it was originally released in 1976].”
Patrick Wayne thinks ‘The Shootist’ is his dad’s ‘finest performance’

Wayne earned Oscar nominations for his movies Sands of Iwo Jima and The Alamo. However, he wouldn’t take home the gold statue until his work on True Grit. Patrick believes that the iconic film isn’t quite his father’s best work. He gives that title to Wayne’s work in The Shootist, which he didn’t even earn an Oscar nomination for.
Patrick said, “When I did finally watch it for the second time, I have to say that it’s probably his finest performance as a pure actor, using all his skills and being more than just a cardboard cutout, but more of a real human being — a vulnerable human being — and I think he pulled it off really well.”

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