Idaho Free Press from Nampa, Idaho on February 28, 1976 · Page 49
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Idaho Free Press from Nampa, Idaho · Page 49

Nampa, Idaho
Issue Date:
Saturday, February 28, 1976
Page 49
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The Duke stars as ex-gunfighter The Idaho Free Press t The News-Tribune, Saturday, February 28,1976 -- B-?l By V croon Scot I HOLLYWOOD CUPI) - John Wayne, a man with a Bicentennial face, wore a wealher- bealcn grin as he said, "Check- male." The crewman silling apposite him nl the chess board sel his king on its side and said, "I resign." Big old Duke sighed contentedly and stood up to stretch. He was between scenes on the sel of "The Shootisl" at the Uurhiink Studios, his first pic- lure in many months. "Damn." he said in his rumbling voice, "I haven't felt this well in 10 years. Haven't looked as good either." lie patted his abdomen, which had shrunk by several inches in Ilie pas! six months. "I've taken off 15 pounds, and I've got 10 more to go. I'll do il. too. liel one nf my pals $1,0(10 I could lose 2~» pounds before IK- does." Wayne wore the clothes that tit him host: western garb, lie 1 plays an aging ex-gunfighlcr. told by ;i doctor Ihitl he's dying of cancer. Wayne was told the same thing more than a decade ago. "Well. I beat lung cancer." he said, silting down again. "And I guess my whole sjstem has changed since then. I quit smoking cigarettes and look up cigars, but they made my throat lighten up. So I slopped cigars and began chewing tobacco. "That got me all choked up after a while. The doctors made some tests and said after 40 years of smoking my metabolism changed. I've become allergic in all forms. Wish that had happened 30 years ago." Asked if he was happy !a he back in a horse opera again, Wayne nodded. Hut his face, which looks as if it had been chiseled from Ml. Rushmorc, bove traces ot doubt. "I like westerns because I know the field so well," he said. "There are no surprises for me when 1 work in a western. It's really a different art form from other movies. "People forget I've done plenty of other pictures. But that's my image. People think of me brawling and roughing il in (he west. "And I did grow up on Ihc Mojave desert, riding a horse to school am! being around cowboys. So I have a feeling for (he west. When I got into pic- lures 1 came to know men like Yakima Canutl and Harry Carey. I worked in sonic little rodeos, loo. Il was a delight. "Bui the average person doesn't know I went In college and played football. They don't consider me a sensitive man. "People think I'm boorish and have no taste. They come to my home in Newport Reach expecting to see a Imnkhousc with horse shoes hanging all over the place. "lieil. I've collected art objects from all over the world. But I'm nol complaining. That's Ihe way il is." Wayne, in truth, is a gentle man. His size, the timbre of his voice and his roles belie the private man. One need only see him wilh Ins children or relaxed in his beautifully appointed waterfront home for a glimpse of the inner Wayne. "For la years 1 had to speak (he worst dialogue any actor ever got stuck wilh," he said. "Helen Hayes once said, 'The test of an actor is his ability to 11 WHAT KEPT John Wayne wears the clothes that fit him best -- western garb, as he relaxes between scenes of his new movie, "The Shootist." throw away a bad line.' Hut hell, you can't throw away a whole picture full of bad lines. "Over the years I've found emotional scenes the easiest lo do. It's not the words that count, it's your altitude. So I try to arouse an emotional attitude in people." A secretary struggled into Wayne's dressing room carrying a large cardboard box jammed wilh letters. "Today's :: - .»il." slie announced. "My ;od." the giant said, shaking his head. "It just doesn't stop coming in. We iry lo answer all the letters. It's the least yon can do. "A good thing about having people know you is seeing the smiling faces wherever yon go in Ihc world. Especially the kids. A man can count himself for- lunate for thai." "The Shootisl," although being filnircl at the liurbank Studios, is being produced by Mike Trankovich in association with Dino De Laurentiis for Paramount. Wayne stars with Lauren Uaeall. Jimmy Slewart and Kichard Boonc make cameo appearances. "I like the script and Ihe people I'm working wilh." he said. U5E SNOW THAT'£ IN THE DRIVEWAY? 11 a o "ANOTHER THING THE WEATHERMAN SAID, x NO TWO SWGW- H.AKES ARE ALIKE.'" » 1976 by Uniled Fejlurs Syna.cjre he 2-29 ·o "I AM PUSHING ON THE ACCELERATOR." THE LAST? CIGARETTE

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