Classic Western movies starred some of the finest and most talented movie stars at the time. The actors and actresses that starred in the cowboy classics became icons. John Wayne, Gary Cooper, and Sam Elliot are just a few people who come to mind when thinking of Westerns. Which Western movie is your favorite?
Can you name the actors that starred in "Tombstone?" What about the actress that starred in "Gunsmoke?" Do you know the man who was commonly known as the "Duke?" If those were too easy, do you know the actor that was known for wearing a poncho? Make sure you know some interesting facts and history behind some of the most famous Western stars, it'll come in handy!
Do you know which actor fought in World War II? Can you name the star that almost always played the role of the villain? Do you know who starred with John Wayne in the movie "Fort Apache?" Can you name the actor behind "The Man With No Name?" If you had no trouble answering questions like these, you'll hit the target with this quiz!
Western movie buffs, saddle up and get ready to take your shot. Let's see if you can hit the bullseye on this quiz!
John Wayne is easily one of the most iconic Western stars. He was the "Duke," a rugged, stereotypical cowboy type.
Henry Fonda was nominated for an Academy Award for his amazing performance in "The Grape of Wrath," which was based on the John Steinbeck novel. He's related, of course to famous people like Jane, Peter and Bridget Fonda.
Gary Cooper was the real deal -- he grew up on a ranch in Montana. But thanks in part to his very English parents, he studied in England before moving back to the U.S. He got famous in part due to his role in "The Winning of Barbara Worth."
In 1992, Clint Eastwood returned to Westerns after a hiatus from the genre. "Unforgiven" earned a remarkable four Academy Awards.
James Arness is the man who played Matt Dillon. For two decades, Dillon kept law and order in the Old West.
"Fort Apache" found Henry Fonda playing a strictly-by-the-numbers cavalry officer. Wayne, the star of the show, takes over the regiment after Fonda's character perishes in battle.
In the early 60s, Clint Eastwood traveled to Italy to try and boost his career by appearing in "A Fistful of Dollars," by director Sergio Leone. The film's unexpected success spawned two more "Dollars" films that made Eastwood a star.
Jimmy Stewart was one of the many big stars in the big hit that is "How the West Was Won." The 1962 movie also starred Henry Fonda, Karl Malden, Walter Brennan and Carroll Baker.
James Arness was a towering Western icon. He also literally towered over people because he was more than 6 feet 7 inches tall.
It's true, the gritty star named John Wayne was born Marion Mitchell Morrison. Take the first letter of those three names and you have Wayne's other nickname, "Mmm."
Clint Eastwood was the Man With No Name in Sergio Leone's famous "Dollars" trilogy. The ominous character was a modern twist on the cowboy hero stereotype.
Lee Van Cleef had a lean face and piercing eyes that made him seem like a perfect villain, so that's often how he was cast. His career was fading when he struck gold with Sergio Leone's "For a Few Dollars More."
After appearing in numerous silent films, Gary Cooper starred in "The Virginian," which had actual dialogue and sound effects.
James Stewart, or Jimmy, appeared in some major Westerns. But it was his performance in "It's a Wonderful Life" that made him a Hollywood icon.
Cooper played the part of Sergeant York in a film of the same name. York was an American hero who served in World War I. Cooper won Best Actor for his work.
Lee Marvin was another actor often typecast as a villain. In "Cat Ballou," a musical, Jane Fonda hires Marvin's character to defend her father's Western ranch.
James Garner found tremendous fame as Bret Maverick in the "Maverick" series. He was a savvy card player who made his living hustling other frontier types.
John Wayne moved from Iowa to attend Southern California on a football scholarship. A body surfing accident ended his football dreams, but he wound up with a job at a studio ... and the rest is history.
Randolph Scott starred in 100 Hollywood movies, and 60 of them were Westerns. "Ride the High Country" is considered one of his best.
In the "Dirty Harry" cop movies, Clint Eastwood branched out from Westerns. When opposed by bad guys, Dirty Harry said, "Make my day."
Maureen O'Hara was the fiery redhead who starred in "Rio Grande." In many Westerns, she played a role as a determined yet sensible frontier woman.
Gary Cooper, the rugged Western star, was in a childhood car accident that injured his hip. Substandard physical therapy left him with his characteristic stiff walking style.
Ford was notoriously hard on John Wayne, calling him a poached egg, among many other insults. But in private, Ford said that Wayne was going to be one of the biggest stars in Hollywood history.
Even as a child (or especially as a child), Wayne hated his given name of Marion Mitchell Morrison. The family dog was named "Duke," and he was so fond of the pup that his relatives called the pair "Big Duke" and "Little Duke."
In the "Dollars" trilogy, Eastwood's black-hearted character famously wears a dirty poncho. Changing up the stereotypical Western attire helped Eastwood's image stand out onscreen.
In "The Man From Laramie," Jimmy Stewart is Will Lockhart, a dark, brooding man who is out to avenge his brother's killing. Stewart is famous for playing heroes of questionable methods.
John Wayne survived cancer but didn't tell the press about his condition because he didn't think it would be good for his career. Sadly, the disease returned and he died in 1979.
In the 50s and 60s, Katy Jurado, originally from Mexico, became a Hollywood star. She appeared in movies like "High Noon" and "Arrowhead."
In "On Golden Pond," Henry Fonda played a curmudgeonly old man trying to make amends with his family. He won an Oscar for the role, as did his co-star, Katharine Hepburn.
His voice and mustache pretty much guaranteed Sam Elliott had work for life in Hollywood. Whether narrating "The Big Lebowski" or playing the part of Virgil Earp in "Tombstone," Sam Elliott remains one of the most memorable Western men to have commanded the screen for years.
Amanda Blake played the long-running part of Miss Kitty Russell in "Gunsmoke." Blake was equally famous for her work in animal rights and helped establish no-kill shelters.
Audie Murphy drove back a whole company of Germans during a 1945 battle…and then went on to earn every single medal the Army could throw at him. By the end of the war, Murphy had received 28 medals before moving on to show business. He starred in Western films like "The Kid from Texas" and "Tumbleweed."
"The Professionals" found Burt Lancaster as an explosives professional who is hired to rescue a hostage during the Mexican Revolution. The movie was a smash hit which garnered three Oscar nominations.
With his slicked hair and high cheekbones, Jack Palance cut an unmistakably confident air within all of his roles. In 1957 he played Jacob Wade in "The Lonely Man," a gunfighter who was looking to mend ties with his son.
Directed by John Sturges, "Chino" starred Charles Bronson in the title role. The film was partly meant to symbolize the taming of the West.
"3:10 to Yuma" was a famous Western long before the 2007 remake. The original starred Glenn Ford as Ben Wade, a down-on-his-luck rancher tasked with escorting a dangerous killer.
Robert Mitchum is best known for his work in film noir. But his career gained a toehold in Hollywood thanks to B-Westerns like those in the "Hopalong Cassidy" franchise, as well as "Nevada."
Lee Van Cleef made menace look easy. He was typecast as Western villains over and over again, but each time he made his characters seem timeless. That talent can be easily seen within his iconic roles in "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly" and "High Noon."
Kirk Douglas starred in numerous Westerns but has said that "Lonely are the Brave" is his favorite. It shows Douglas as an old-school cowboy at odds with a world that is quickly modernizing.
"Shane" is — will probably always be — one of the most famous Westerns ever made in Hollywood. Alan Ladd received the title role and knocked it out of the park. He also showed his talent within "This Gun for Hire" and "The Great Gatsby."
William Holden became a household name with "The Bridge on the River Kwai" in 1957. But a decade later, this star wasn't shining quite so brightly -- until the savagery of "The Wild Bunch" made him an A-lister all over again.
Val Kilmer and Kurt Russell co-starred in "Tombstone," which was a hit at the box office. It found the two stars reenacting the infamous gunfight at the O.K. Corral.
Jack Palance had a long and storied career that found him exploring many roles outside of Westerns. None-the-less, in 1970 he returned to the Western genre and wound up in starring in three Westerns in just one year.
Newman wasn't just a famous actor — he was a social activist who worked to make the world a better place. That's a far cry from his character Butch, who helped the Sundance Kid commit a string of violent crimes in their famous Wild West movie.
Gregory Peck might be best known for his turn as Atticus Finch in "To Kill a Mockingbird." But he also had huge Western roles, such as "The Big Country," in which he was billed above even Hollywood icon Charlton Heston.