Walter Brennan

In many ways the most successful and familiar character actor of American sound films and the only actor to date to win three Oscars for Best Supporting Actor, Walter Brennan attended college in Cambridge, Massachusetts, studying engineering. While in school he became interested in acting and performed in school plays. He worked some in vaudeville and also in various jobs such as clerking in a bank and as a lumberjack. He toured in small musical comedy companies before entering the military in 1917. After his war service he went to Guatemala and raised pineapples, then migrated to Los Angeles, where he speculated in real estate. A few jobs as a film extra came his way beginning in 1923, then some work as a stuntman. He eventually achieved speaking roles, going from bit parts to substantial supporting parts in scores of features and short subjects between 1927 and 1938. In 1936 his role in Come and Get It (1936) won him the very first Best Supporting Actor Academy Award. He would win it twice more in the decade, and be nominated for a fourth. His range was enormous. He could play sophisticated businessmen, con artists, local yokels, cowhands and military officers with apparent equal ease. An accident in 1932 cost him most of his teeth, and he most often was seen in eccentric rural parts, often playing characters much older than his actual age. His career never really declined, and in the 1950s he became an even more endearing and familiar figure in ...

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A Stolen Life (1946)

A twin takes her deceased sister's place as wife of the man they both love.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Curtis Bernhardt
CAST:  Bette Davis  •  Glenn Ford  •  Dane Clark  •  Walter Brennan

A twin takes her deceased sister's place as wife of the man they both love.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Curtis Bernhardt
CAST:  Bette Davis  •  Glenn Ford  •  Dane Clark  •  Walter Brennan

Bad Day at Black Rock (1955)

Thought provokingBrainyInspiringClever

One-armed war veteran John J. Macreedy steps off a train at the sleepy little town of Black Rock. Once there, he begins to unravel a web of lies, secrecy, and murder.  (more)

DIRECTION:  John Sturges
CAST:  Spencer Tracy  •  Robert Ryan  •  Anne Francis  •  Walter Brennan

One-armed war veteran John J. Macreedy steps off a train at the sleepy little town of Black Rock. Once there, he begins to unravel a web of lies, secrecy, and murder.  (more)

DIRECTION:  John Sturges
CAST:  Spencer Tracy  •  Robert Ryan  •  Anne Francis  •  Walter Brennan

Blood on the Moon (1948)

Mitchum plays drifter cowboy Jim Garry. After receiving a job-offer letter from smooth-talking Tate Riling (Preston), Garry rides into an Indian reservation and finds himself in the middle of a feud between cattle ranchers and homesteaders. What Garry doesn't ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Robert Wise
CAST:  Robert Mitchum  •  Barbara Bel Geddes  •  Robert Preston  •  Walter Brennan

Mitchum plays drifter cowboy Jim Garry. After receiving a job-offer letter from smooth-talking Tate Riling (Preston), Garry rides into an Indian reservation and finds himself in the middle of a feud between cattle ranchers and homesteaders. What Garry doesn't ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Robert Wise
CAST:  Robert Mitchum  •  Barbara Bel Geddes  •  Robert Preston  •  Walter Brennan

The Bride of Frankenstein (1935)

Bride of Frankenstein begins where James Whale's Frankenstein from 1931 ended. Dr. Frankenstein has not been killed as previously portrayed and now he wants to get away from the mad experiments. Yet when his wife is kidnapped by his creation, Frankenstein agrees to ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  James Whale
CAST:  Boris Karloff  •  Colin Clive  •  Valerie Hobson  •  Ernest Thesiger

Bride of Frankenstein begins where James Whale's Frankenstein from 1931 ended. Dr. Frankenstein has not been killed as previously portrayed and now he wants to get away from the mad experiments. Yet when his wife is kidnapped by his creation, Frankenstein agrees to ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  James Whale
CAST:  Boris Karloff  •  Colin Clive  •  Valerie Hobson  •  Ernest Thesiger

Fury (1936)

Joe, who owns a gas station along with his brothers and is about to marry Katherine, travels to the small town where she lives to visit her, but is wrongly mistaken for a wanted kidnapper and arrested.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Fritz Lang
CAST:  Sylvia Sidney  •  Spencer Tracy  •  Walter Abel  •  Bruce Cabot

Joe, who owns a gas station along with his brothers and is about to marry Katherine, travels to the small town where she lives to visit her, but is wrongly mistaken for a wanted kidnapper and arrested.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Fritz Lang
CAST:  Sylvia Sidney  •  Spencer Tracy  •  Walter Abel  •  Bruce Cabot

How the West Was Won (1962)

EpicUpliftingBeautifulAdventurous

The epic tale of the development of the American West from the 1830s through the Civil War to the end of the century, as seen through the eyes of one pioneer family.  (more)

DIRECTION:  George Marshall  •  Henry Hathaway  •  John Ford
CAST:  Carroll Baker  •  Lee J. Cobb  •  Henry Fonda  •  Carolyn Jones

The epic tale of the development of the American West from the 1830s through the Civil War to the end of the century, as seen through the eyes of one pioneer family.  (more)

DIRECTION:  George Marshall  •  Henry Hathaway  •  John Ford
CAST:  Carroll Baker  •  Lee J. Cobb  •  Henry Fonda  •  Carolyn Jones

Meet John Doe (1941)

As a parting shot, fired reporter Ann Mitchell prints a fake letter from unemployed "John Doe," who threatens suicide in protest of social ills. The paper is forced to rehire Ann and hires John Willoughby to impersonate "Doe." Ann and her bosses cynically milk the ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Frank Capra
CAST:  Barbara Stanwyck  •  Gary Cooper  •  Edward Arnold  •  Walter Brennan

As a parting shot, fired reporter Ann Mitchell prints a fake letter from unemployed "John Doe," who threatens suicide in protest of social ills. The paper is forced to rehire Ann and hires John Willoughby to impersonate "Doe." Ann and her bosses cynically milk the ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Frank Capra
CAST:  Barbara Stanwyck  •  Gary Cooper  •  Edward Arnold  •  Walter Brennan

My Darling Clementine (1946)

Wyatt Earp and his brothers Morgan and Virgil ride into Tombstone and leave brother James in charge of their cattle herd. On their return they find their cattle stolen and James dead. Wyatt takes on the job of town marshal, making his brothers deputies, and vows to ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  John Ford
CAST:  Henry Fonda  •  Linda Darnell  •  Victor Mature  •  Cathy Downs

Wyatt Earp and his brothers Morgan and Virgil ride into Tombstone and leave brother James in charge of their cattle herd. On their return they find their cattle stolen and James dead. Wyatt takes on the job of town marshal, making his brothers deputies, and vows to ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  John Ford
CAST:  Henry Fonda  •  Linda Darnell  •  Victor Mature  •  Cathy Downs

Nobody Lives Forever (1946)

A con artist falls for the rich widow he's trying to fleece.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Jean Negulesco
CAST:  John Garfield  •  Geraldine Fitzgerald  •  Walter Brennan  •  Faye Emerson

A con artist falls for the rich widow he's trying to fleece.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Jean Negulesco
CAST:  John Garfield  •  Geraldine Fitzgerald  •  Walter Brennan  •  Faye Emerson

Northwest Passage (1940)

Based on the Kenneth Roberts novel of the same name, this film tells the story of two friends who join Rogers' Rangers, as the legendary elite force engages the enemy during the French and Indian War. The film focuses on their famous raid at Fort St. Francis and ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  King Vidor
CAST:  Spencer Tracy  •  Robert Young  •  Walter Brennan  •  Ruth Hussey

Based on the Kenneth Roberts novel of the same name, this film tells the story of two friends who join Rogers' Rangers, as the legendary elite force engages the enemy during the French and Indian War. The film focuses on their famous raid at Fort St. Francis and ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  King Vidor
CAST:  Spencer Tracy  •  Robert Young  •  Walter Brennan  •  Ruth Hussey

Red River (1948)

Headstrong Thomas Dunson starts a thriving Texas cattle ranch with the help of his faithful trail hand, Groot, and his protégé, Matthew Garth, an orphan Dunson took under his wing when Matt was a boy. In need of money following the Civil War, Dunson and Matt lead a ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Howard Hawks
CAST:  John Wayne  •  Montgomery Clift  •  Joanne Dru  •  Walter Brennan

Headstrong Thomas Dunson starts a thriving Texas cattle ranch with the help of his faithful trail hand, Groot, and his protégé, Matthew Garth, an orphan Dunson took under his wing when Matt was a boy. In need of money following the Civil War, Dunson and Matt lead a ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Howard Hawks
CAST:  John Wayne  •  Montgomery Clift  •  Joanne Dru  •  Walter Brennan

Rio Bravo (1959)

ClassicCleverFunSimple

The sheriff of a small town in southwest Texas must keep custody of a murderer whose brother, a powerful rancher, is trying to help him escape. After a friend is killed trying to muster support for him, he and his deputies - a disgraced drunk and a cantankerous old ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Howard Hawks
CAST:  John Wayne  •  Dean Martin  •  Ricky Nelson  •  Walter Brennan

The sheriff of a small town in southwest Texas must keep custody of a murderer whose brother, a powerful rancher, is trying to help him escape. After a friend is killed trying to muster support for him, he and his deputies - a disgraced drunk and a cantankerous old ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Howard Hawks
CAST:  John Wayne  •  Dean Martin  •  Ricky Nelson  •  Walter Brennan

Sergeant York (1941)

Action-packedClassicDramaticHeartbreaking

Alvin York a hillbilly sharpshooter transforms himself from ruffian to religious pacifist. He is then called to serve his country and despite deep religious and moral objections to fighting becomes one of the most celebrated American heroes of WWI.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Howard Hawks
CAST:  Gary Cooper  •  Walter Brennan  •  Joan Leslie  •  Margaret Wycherly

Alvin York a hillbilly sharpshooter transforms himself from ruffian to religious pacifist. He is then called to serve his country and despite deep religious and moral objections to fighting becomes one of the most celebrated American heroes of WWI.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Howard Hawks
CAST:  Gary Cooper  •  Walter Brennan  •  Joan Leslie  •  Margaret Wycherly

Support Your Local Sheriff! (1969)

A quick-witted drifter wanders into a lawless town in the midst of a gold rush. Shocked by the prices of food and meals he reluctantly takes the job of sheriff by amazing the Mayor with his lightning quick, dead eye pistol accuracy. He makes the town council know ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Burt Kennedy
CAST:  James Garner  •  Joan Hackett  •  Walter Brennan  •  Harry Morgan

A quick-witted drifter wanders into a lawless town in the midst of a gold rush. Shocked by the prices of food and meals he reluctantly takes the job of sheriff by amazing the Mayor with his lightning quick, dead eye pistol accuracy. He makes the town council know ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Burt Kennedy
CAST:  James Garner  •  Joan Hackett  •  Walter Brennan  •  Harry Morgan

The Far Country (1954)

In 1896, Jeff Webster sees the start of the Klondike gold rush as a golden opportunity to make a fortune in beef...and woe betide anyone standing in his way! He drives a cattle herd from Wyoming to Seattle, by ship to Skagway, and (after a delay caused by larcenous ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Anthony Mann
CAST:  James Stewart  •  Ruth Roman  •  Corinne Calvet  •  Walter Brennan

In 1896, Jeff Webster sees the start of the Klondike gold rush as a golden opportunity to make a fortune in beef...and woe betide anyone standing in his way! He drives a cattle herd from Wyoming to Seattle, by ship to Skagway, and (after a delay caused by larcenous ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Anthony Mann
CAST:  James Stewart  •  Ruth Roman  •  Corinne Calvet  •  Walter Brennan

The Invisible Man (1933)

Working in Dr. Cranley’s laboratory, scientist Jack Griffin was always given the latitude to conduct some of his own experiments. His sudden departure, however, has Cranley’s daughter Flora worried about him. Griffin has taken a room at the nearby Lion’s Head Inn, ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  James Whale
CAST:  Claude Rains  •  Gloria Stuart  •  William Harrigan  •  Henry Travers

Working in Dr. Cranley’s laboratory, scientist Jack Griffin was always given the latitude to conduct some of his own experiments. His sudden departure, however, has Cranley’s daughter Flora worried about him. Griffin has taken a room at the nearby Lion’s Head Inn, ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  James Whale
CAST:  Claude Rains  •  Gloria Stuart  •  William Harrigan  •  Henry Travers

King of Jazz (1930)

Made during the early years of the movie musical, this exuberant revue was one of the most extravagant, eclectic, and technically ambitious Hollywood productions of its day. Starring the bandleader Paul Whiteman, then widely celebrated as the King of Jazz, the film ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  John Murray Anderson
CAST:  Paul Whiteman  •  John Boles  •  Laura La Plante  •  Jeanette Loff

Made during the early years of the movie musical, this exuberant revue was one of the most extravagant, eclectic, and technically ambitious Hollywood productions of its day. Starring the bandleader Paul Whiteman, then widely celebrated as the King of Jazz, the film ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  John Murray Anderson
CAST:  Paul Whiteman  •  John Boles  •  Laura La Plante  •  Jeanette Loff

The Last Performance (1929)

A middle-aged magician is in love with his beautiful young assistant. She, on the other hand, is in love with the magician's young protege, who turns out to be a bum and a thief.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Pál Fejős
CAST:  Conrad Veidt  •  Mary Philbin  •  Leslie Fenton  •  Fred MacKaye

A middle-aged magician is in love with his beautiful young assistant. She, on the other hand, is in love with the magician's young protege, who turns out to be a bum and a thief.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Pál Fejős
CAST:  Conrad Veidt  •  Mary Philbin  •  Leslie Fenton  •  Fred MacKaye

The Pride of the Yankees (1942)

The story of the life and career of the baseball hall of famer, Lou Gehrig.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Sam Wood
CAST:  Gary Cooper  •  Teresa Wright  •  Babe Ruth  •  Walter Brennan

The story of the life and career of the baseball hall of famer, Lou Gehrig.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Sam Wood
CAST:  Gary Cooper  •  Teresa Wright  •  Babe Ruth  •  Walter Brennan

The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle (1939)

In 1911, minor stage comic, Vernon Castle meets the stage-struck Irene Foote. A few misadventures later, they marry and then abandon comedy to attempt a dancing career together. While they're performing in Paris, an agent sees them rehearse and starts them on their ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  H. C. Potter
CAST:  Fred Astaire  •  Ginger Rogers  •  Edna May Oliver  •  Walter Brennan

In 1911, minor stage comic, Vernon Castle meets the stage-struck Irene Foote. A few misadventures later, they marry and then abandon comedy to attempt a dancing career together. While they're performing in Paris, an agent sees them rehearse and starts them on their ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  H. C. Potter
CAST:  Fred Astaire  •  Ginger Rogers  •  Edna May Oliver  •  Walter Brennan
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