Old School Americana & Nostalgia


How Clint Eastwood Mistakenly Trapped Burt Reynolds in the ‘Wrong Western’

How Clint Eastwood Mistakenly Trapped Burt Reynolds in the ‘Wrong Western’

Sometimes, actors have been known to suggest other ones for roles like Clint Eastwood did with Burt Reynolds. In Eastwood’s case, he informed Reynolds that he should go work with Sergio Corbucci. This director was working on another Spaghetti Western titled Navajo Joe. Reynolds, for his part, probably bit off more than he could chew.

Corbucci and de Laurentiis got together in the mid-1960s and came up with the idea for Reynolds’ movie. But these two filmmakers reportedly wanted Marlon Brando to play Navajo Joe. Well, Brando turned it down. According to Collider, this bummed out de Laurentiis and Corbucci. Reynolds, though, had some interest because Eastwood had chatted up Reynolds about working with a Spaghetti Western director named Sergio.

Of course, the “Sergio” director was not Leone. That part slipped past Reynolds until after he’d already signed up for the movie.

Burt Reynolds Worked With ‘Other’ Sergio On Navajo Joe

But Corbucci is now regarded as a cool cat behind the camera. At the time, it just was not good enough for Reynolds. Anyway, he went forward with the movie. Yet Reynolds, every time he had a chance, would dogpile on Navajo Joe. Heck, Reynolds even called Corbucci “the wrong Sergio.” That’s according to Aliza Wong’s Spaghetti Westerns: A Viewers Guide.

Even with all of the consternation around the movie, there were some good moments in Navajo Joe.

Now, for some actors back in the 1960s, if they could find a way into a Spaghetti western, then it might be a good way to break into the business. Why? This genre is filled with action movies. They were mean and filled with feelings of revenge.

Action movies like these would dive right into the action and skip long practical issues. There’s less time and even less talk about character development. No time for that. Let’s get back to the action on the field. See, Spaghetti Westerns have picked up a lot of fans over the years. More action, less talk.

What, though, might someone say about the key ingredients of these movies? They have a larger-than-life effect about them. Usually, there’s a strong antihero in the midst. Toss in some strange, wild, talk and that movie will become some type of class.

But there is no doubt that the “Spaghetti Western” has a devoted following all around the world. That’s in due part to the work of Eastwood.

Make sure and check your TV listings to see when Navajo Joe will be shown on your TV set.