John Wayne is an icon. Because of his fame and impact on cinema, many people think they have a pretty good grasp of who he was. Most fans know him for his hard-nosed gun-slinging characters. He played both soldiers and cowboys flawlessly. It didn’t matter if he was in the Wild West or storming the Eastern Front, Duke was a hard man on-screen. Wayne’s best-known quotes all consist of his thoughts on manliness and patriotism. In short, many fans think of him as one tough customer.
However, what many don’t realize is that John Wayne had a great sense of humor. In fact, in many interviews, he laughed and joked with the interviewers whenever possible. With such a tough persona, many people would be surprised to know how quick the Duke was to laugh or how bright his smile could be.
A great example of John Wayne’s sense of humor is his 1976 appearance on the Phil Donahue Show. During that show, Duke took questions from his fans in the audience as well as the show’s host. He gave them the information that they wanted most of the time. However, he did so with a laugh more often than not. At one point, a fan asked if he had a favorite co-star. His answer made the entire audience laugh.
John Wayne On His Favorite Co-Star
The question came from a sweet elderly woman in the audience.
John Wayne paused for a moment, mulling the question over. “Well, uh,” he started, the ghost of a smile on his face. “I Like to see a good lookin’ woman opposite me…” The rest of the sentence is cut off by the crowd’s laughter.
With a bigger grin on his face, John Wayne went on, “Ya know, I’m political enough not to answer that question.”
That seems like a fair response. There’s a good chance that no matter what answer he gave would hurt someone’s feelings somewhere down the line.
We may not know who John Wayne’s favorite co-star was. However, we do know the one actress who starred opposite Duke in more films than any other actress. At the same time, she fits the bill of a beautiful woman. That actress is Maureen O’Hara.
O’Hara was a gorgeous Irish actress with coppery red hair and dark eyes. She starred in five films with John Wayne between 1950 and 1971. They shared the screen in Rio Grande, The Quiet Man, The Wings of Eagles, McClintock!, and Big Jake.
by Clayton Edwards