John Wayne -- the Hollywood legend who seldom lost a fight in more than two hundred films -- died on Monday night (11 June) after a fifteen-year battle with cancer.
John Wayne -- the Hollywood legend who seldom lost a fight in more than two hundred films -- died on Monday night (11 June) after a fifteen-year battle with cancer. Although the film world knew that the slow-speaking hero of war and western films was dying, it was still shaken by the news of his death. Wayne entered hospital in the American film capital, Los Angles, three weeks ago to have an intestinal blockage removed. But doctors found more cancer cells in his intestines and the seventy-two year-old star never returned home. His death was announced by a hospital spokesman late on Monday night.
SYNOPSIS: Wayne came to the film scene in 1928 and quickly became Hollywood's biggest box office draw. He finally won an Oscar in 1970 for his role as an ageing sheriff in the film "True Grit".
Wayne also formed his own film company and he produced more than a dozen movies. One of the most famous was "The Alamo" -- which he also directed. Know to his friends as "The Duke", he was recognised in Hollywood as its uncrowned king. He could count royalty among his fans -- including Britain's Princess Margaret. His last film, "The Shootist", has an ironic twist. In it, he portrayed a gunfighter dying of cancer.
Politically, Wayne was a staunch conservative and he stoutly defended United States policy in Vietnam. Many fans were angered when he starred in "The Green Berets" -- a film which appeared to wholeheartedly support the American role in the Vietnam War. In real life--as ......on the screen -- Wayne was tough-talking but soft-hearted. He was also a super-patriot, always professing his love for America."
Last year, part of his heart was removed and replaced by a valve from a pig. He returned home, ready as always, to go back to work.