Alan Ladd - Actors and Actresses




Nationality: American. Born: Alan Walbridge Ladd in Hot Springs, Arkansas, 3 September 1913. Education: Hollywood High School. Family: Married 1) Marjorie Jane Harrold, 1936 (divorced 1941), son: the film executive Alan Ladd, Jr., 2) Sue Carol, 1942, daughter: the actress Alana, son: David. Career: During the early 1930s, "discovered" several times, but given only small parts, beginning in 1932 with Once in a Lifetime ; worked as studio grip, attended Bard Dramatic School for one term, and eventually worked as a one-man variety show on radio station KFWB; 1942—Paramount contract; 1943–44—served in U.S. Army (medical discharge); 1948—formed his own radio production company; 1954–59—contract with Warner Brothers; 1954—formed Jaguar Productions; 1959—began TV production. Died: 29 January 1969.


Films as Actor:

1932

Once in a Lifetime (Mack)

1933

Saturday's Millions (Sedgwick)

1936

Pigskin Parade ( The Harmony Parade ) (Butler)

1937

The Last Train from Madrid (Hogan); All over Town (Horne); Hold 'em Navy ( That Navy Spirit ) (Neumann)

1938

The Goldwyn Follies (Marshall); Come on Leathernecks (Cruze); Freshman Year (McDonald)

1939

Rulers of the Sea (Lloyd); The Green Hornet (Beebe and Taylor—serial); Hitler, Beast of Berlin ( Beasts of Berlin ; Hell's Devils ; Goose Step ) (Scott)

1940

Brother Rat and a Baby ( Baby Be Good ) (Enright); In Old Missouri (McDonald); The Light of Western Stars (Selander); Gangs of Chicago (Lubin); Those Were the Days ( Good Old School Days ) (Laird); Cross Country Romance (Woodruff); Wildcat Bus (Woodruff); Captain Caution (Wallace); The Howards of Virginia ( The Tree of Liberty ) (Lloyd); Meet the Missus (St. Clair); Her First Romance (Dmytryk); Blame It on Love (doc); Meat and Romance (doc)

1941

Petticoat Politics (Kenton); The Reluctant Dragon (Werker); I Look at You (short); The Black Cat (Rogell); Citizen Kane (Welles) (as reporter); Paper Bullets ( Gangs Inc. ) (Rosen); Great Guns (Banks); Cadet Girl (McCarey); Unfinished Rainbows (doc)

1942

Joan of Paris (Stevenson); This Gun for Hire (Tuttle) (as Raven); The Glass Key (Heisler) (as Ed Beaumont); Star Spangled Rhythm (Marshall) (as guest)

1943

Lucky Jordan (Tuttle) (title role); China (Farrow) (as Mr. Jones); Letters from a Friend (Shourds—doc)

1944

And Now Tomorrow (Pichel) (as Dr. Merek Vance); Skirmish on the Home Front (doc)

1945

Salty O'Rourke (Walsh) (title role); Hollywood Victory Caravan (Russell—doc); Duffy's Tavern (Walker) (as guest)

1946

The Blue Dahlia (Marshall) (as Johnny Morrison); O.S.S. (Pichel) (as John Martin); Two Years before the Mast (Farrow) (as Charles Stewart)

1947

My Favorite Brunette (Nugent) (as guest); Calcutta (Farrow) (as Neale Gordon); Variety Girl (Marshall) (as guest); Wild Harvest (Garnett) (as Joe Madigan)

1948

Saigon (Fenton) (as Maj. Larry Briggs); Beyond Glory (Farrow) (as Rocky Gilman); Whispering Smith (Fenton) (as Luke Smith)

1949

The Great Gatsby (Nugent) (as Jay Gatsby); Chicago Deadline (Allen) (as Ed Adams); American Portrait (doc); Eyes of Hollywood (doc)

1950

Captain Carey U.S.A. ( After Midnight ) (Leisen) (as Webster Carey)

1951

Appointment with Danger (Allen) (as Al Goddard); Branded (Maté) (as Choya); The Road to Hope (doc)

1952

Red Mountain (Dieterle) (as Brett); The Iron Mistress (Douglas) (as Jim Bowie); The Sporting Oasis (short)

1953

Thunder in the East (Charles Vidor) (as Steve Gibbs); Shane (Stevens) (title role); The Desert Legion (Pevney) (as Paul Lartal); Botany Bay (Farrow) (as Hugh Tallant); Paratrooper ( The Red Beret ) (Young) (as Canada)

1954

Saskatchewan ( O'Rourke of the Royal Mounted ) (Walsh) (as O'Rourke); Hell below Zero (Robson) (as Duncan Craig); The Black Knight (Garnett) (as John); Drum Beat (Daves) (as Johnny MacKay)

1955

The McConnell Story ( Tiger in the Sky ) (Douglas) (as Mac McConnell)

1956

Hell on Frisco Bay (Tuttle) (as Steve Rollins); Santiago ( The Gun Runner ) (Douglas) (as Cash Adams); A Cry in the Night (Tuttle) (as narrator)

1957

The Big Land ( Stampeded ) (Douglas) (as Chad Morgan); Boy on a Dolphin (Negulesco) (as James Clader)

1958

The Deep Six (Maté) (as Alec Austen); The Proud Rebel (Curtiz) (as John Chandler); The Badlanders (Daves) (as Peter Van Hook)

1959

The Man in the Net (Curtiz) (as John Hamilton)

1960

Guns of the Timberland (Webb) (as Jim Hadley); All the Young Men (Bartlett) (as Kincaid); One Foot in Hell (Clark) (as Mitch Barrett)

1961

Orazi e Curiazi ( Duel of Champions ) (Baldi and Young) (as Horatio)

1962

Thirteen West Street (Leacock) (as Walt Sherill)

1963

The Carpetbaggers (Dmytryk) (as Nevada Smith)

Alan Ladd (left) with Brandon de Wilde in Shane
Alan Ladd (left) with Brandon de Wilde in Shane

Publications


On LADD: books—

Linet, Beverly, Ladd: The Life, The Legend: The Legacy of Alan Ladd: A Biography , New York, 1979.

Henry, Marilyn, and Ron DeSourdis, The Films of Alan Ladd , Secaucus, New Jersey, 1981.


On LADD: articles—

Roman, Robert C., "Alan Ladd," in Films in Review (New York), April 1964.

Fox, J., "The Good Bad Ladd: A Profile of the Gentle Gunman" and "Spirit of the West," in Films and Filming (London), June and July 1972.

Ciné Revue (Paris), 14 July 1983.

Film Dope (Nottingham), March 1985.

Fagen, H., "Hollywood's Forgotten Lad: The Lost Legacy of Alan Ladd," in Classic Images (Muscatine), October 1992.

Berg, A. Scott, "At Home with Alan Ladd: A Holmby Hills House Built by the Star of Shane ," in Architectural Digest (Los Angeles), April 1994.

Stars (Mariembourg), Spring 1994.


* * *


In the opening moments of This Gun for Hire , Alan Ladd checks his gun, feeds a kitten, slaps the maid, tosses a ball to a cute little girl, and cold-bloodedly shoots down two people whom he has been hired to rub out. With Veronica Lake's guidance, he eventually does the Right Thing, but it was his clear-eyed amorality that audiences responded to; This Gun for Hire made Ladd a star overnight.

He was already, by that time, a veteran of a decade in films, but had never made much of an impact: he was a college student in Pigskin Parade , a sailor in Hold 'em Navy , one of the reporters at the end of Citizen Kane , and a cheerful animator explaining a storyboard to Robert Benchley in The Reluctant Dragon . After This Gun for Hire Ladd became more prolific and quite popular, but his range never extended appreciably. Stalwart and manly, he could also be dour; he seldom smiled without irony. Never a personable figure on the screen, Ladd's appeal was that of an icon: serene face, athletic body, piercing eyes, and an overall tough-guy demeanor that was precisely appropriate for the dark side of the 1940s.

His enigmatic, slightly mocking persona was used to diverse effect by his more perceptive directors—John Farrow, Tay Garnett, Raoul Walsh—and his frequent teamings with insolent twin-soul Veronica Lake provided his stolid imperturbability with a dash and resonance that did not always surface without her. Ladd and Lake were an inspired team; they were so alike in both countenance and manner that they often seem incestuous siblings rather than the conventional lovers that the script means for them to be. Ladd's sullen calm could also take on a veneer of Old World charm which made him a natural and courtly swashbuckler in colorful, exciting entertainments: Desert Legion ; The Iron Mistress (in which he played Jim Bowie), The Red Beret , Santiago , Saskatchewan .

Shane was Ladd's last great part; his character looks back on a life of gunfire and bloodshed with a complex mixture of nostalgia and regret. Shane's past was, in short, like Ladd's filmic history. When the gunfighter rides away, we feel the loss of this cool and violent man who so wanted to be a hero, but who just didn't have it in him.

—Frank Thompson

User Contributions:

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sam
Report this comment as inappropriate
Oct 14, 2008 @ 6:18 pm
the movie was an okay movie i guess not really into the big old wesern movies but not to bad

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