Friday, May 21, 2010

Jack Kelly - The Tenderfoot :)

Howdy All!

I thought you might enjoy seeing more pix of young Jack Kelly in his pre-Maverick western film days. I guess you could call him a "tenderfoot" at this point. (Just don't call him "Sugarfoot"--that was Will Hutchins. ;->)

Recognize the guy in the center? (Uh, the guy standing in the center, wearing a star.) That's Randolph Scott, of course. But, who's the dusty dude on the right?

It's 22 year-old JK, in what is often listed as his first film as an adult actor, Fighting Man of the Plains (1949). I happened to catch it as it came on TV a few months ago. I'd vaguely remembered reading that JK was in it. However, I was afraid it was going to be one of those "Is that him?" blink-and-you'll-miss-JK movies, like Holiday Affair.

But, I sat down and watched Fighting Man. Luckily, it had an interesting plot and good acting, and--hey, there's JK! (My brother was over and even he noticed when JK suddenly appeared about an hour into the film: "Isn't that Bart Maverick?")

JK plays an uncredited "cattleman" in a couple of scenes. Other familiar western faces in Fighting Man include Victor Jory (who would later co-star with JK in the short-lived Kings Row TV series), Paul Fix, Barry Kelley, Rhys Williams, and, as "Jesse James", a young actor named Dale Robertson.

Here's another pic of JK as "Curly Mather" in Gunsmoke (1953). The lady is Susan Cabot.

Finally, here's my favorite pic, showing JK as "Hatcher" in 1953's The Stand at Apache River, trying to persuade Jaclynne Greene to leave her innkeeper husband. Incidentally, some actors just don't look right with mustaches; fortunately, JK was one actor who looked fantastic with or without facial hair! :->