THE AMERICAN WEST (mostly): Fact and Fiction (mostly fiction)

"NOBODY GETS TO BE A COWBOY FOREVER." -- Chet Rollins (Jack Palance) in MONTE WALSH (NG, 1970)

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Monday, June 30, 2014

THE BIG RICH: The Rise and Fall of the Greatest Texas Oil Fortunes by Bryan Burrough

I’ve been on a Texas binge lately.  I’ve always found the state, its history, and its people to be intriguing.  And the politicians?  Is there a state that can compare with Texas when one begins to list the people who have served as governors of that state?  Well, maybe next-door neighbor Louisiana comes close.

I read one time (and I would give credit to the source, but I don’t remember who wrote it) that, paraphrasing now, Louisiana governors had three primary responsibilities.  Listed in the order of their importance they are: 1). to entertain; 2). to govern; and 3). to stay out of jail.  (Piyush “Bobby” Jindal seems to have missed the memo.  He only seems interested in number 2.)  But, I digress.

Texas governors include the likes of Sam Houston and “Pa” Ferguson and “Ma” Ferguson and “Pappy” O’Daniel and John Connally, and Ann Richards, and George W. Bush and Rick Perry.  Top that, Louisiana.

And of course, there is the giant that overshadows them all: Lyndon Baines Johnson.  Never a governor, nevertheless he is one of only four people to serve in all four elected federal offices: Representative, Senator, Vice-President and President.  LBJ’s impact on American politics has been so great that it has taken Robert Caro five volumes to write his biography. 

And that’s where I began my recent Texas marathon, by re-reading Caro’s first two volumes (if I live long enough I plan to read the other three) as well as Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream, written by young Doris Kearns, before Goodwin was added to her name.

Next came the Texas novels written by Billy Lee Brammer and Edwin “Bud” Shrake, especially Shrake, and a great study of those two writers and four of their fellow Texans in Steven L. Davis’s Texas Literary Outlaws. 

And I recently finished The Big Rich: The Rise and Fall of the Greatest Texas Oil Fortunes.

Shrake’s Strange Peaches is a novel set in Dallas just before and just after the assassination of JFK.  When I read his descriptions of almost continuous parties, elaborate pranks and other excesses all fueled by booze, pot, and hard drugs, I thought that Shrake was probably guilty of employing his novelist’s license to embellish in order to punch up the story.  Wrong, again.  After reading Texas Literary Outlaws and The Big Rich I now know that practically everything he described actually occurred.

Bud Shrake
 I just read Shrake’s But Not For Love: A Novel About Men, Women and Money.  Well after all, it is about Texas.  I am currently reading Phillipp Meyer's multi-generational Texas epic, The Son.  Furthermore, Minutaglio and Smith's autobiography of Molly Ivins is in the hopper. 

The Big Rich is a recounting of the life and times of four Texas oil wildcatters -- Hugh Roy Cullen, Sid Richardson, Clint Murchison and H.L. Hunt.  Burrough writes, “If Texas Oil had a Mount Rushmore, their faces would adorn it.  A good ol’ boy.  A scold. A genius. A bigamist. Known in their heyday as the Big Four, they became the founders of the greatest Texas family fortunes, headstrong adventurers who rose from nowhere to take turns being acclaimed America’s wealthiest man.”

Hugh Roy Cullen, later a Houston wildcatter, grew up poor in San Antonio, and dropped out of school in the fifth grade.  After becoming a wealthy man, he would become an early champion of and contributor to ultraconservative causes.

H.R. Cullen
He was “stern, humorless, and a bit of a scold…a man who detested communists, pinkos,” and especially Roosevelt “and whose favored politician was the red-busting Joe McCarthy.”

Sid Richardson and Clint Murchison were lifelong friends from Athens, sixty miles southeast of Dallas. According to Burrough, “[d]espite their common backgrounds, they were a mismatched pair.  Murchison was energetic, impatient, independent, and like many country boys before him, intellectually insecure….Murchison was shy and would remain so all his life.  If he didn’t absolutely have to talk to someone, he avoided it.

In sharp contrast, Richardson presented himself as the essence of the Texas good ol’ boy, joshing, laughing, and cursing in a thick backwoods accent.”

Clint Murchison

Sid Richardson

As outrageous as the conduct of these three, and their progeny, could be at times, neither they, nor their progeny, could hold a candle to H.L. Hunt or his progeny.

Burrough writes, “At a time when itinerant wildcatters like Sid Richardson couldn’t find time for a wife let alone a family, Hunt would build three, two in secret.  If they made a movie of his life, no one would believe it was true.”

The only non-native in the group, Hunt was born in southern Illinois, about seventy miles south of St. Louis.  “He was a strange man, a loner who lived deep inside his own peculiar mind, a self-educated thinker who was convinced – absolutely convinced – that he was possessed of talents that bordered on the superhuman.  He may have been right; in the annals of American commerce there has never been anyone quite like Haroldson Lafayette Hunt.”


H.L. Hunt

 The subtitle of the book, The Rise and Fall of the Greatest Texas Oil Fortunes, is appropriate.  The “Rise” was accomplished by the Big Four; the “Fall” was engineered by the progeny, particularly that of Murchison and, especially, Hunt. The fall is a story of family feuds, lawsuits, scandals and bankruptcies – and it isn’t pretty.

I do recommend the book even though it is marred by inexcusable typos and misspellings (“Edmund” Murrow being only one example) and unexplainable factual errors.  The typos and misspellings could have and should have been corrected by a proofreader and Burrough and his editor certainly should have avoided the obvious factual errors.

How could he have possibly written the following: “… the champion steer, an eight-hundred pound heifer…?”  Huh?  Shouldn’t Burrough have known that a steer is a castrated male and a heifer is a young female?  How could a Texan be so confused about bovine gender? And shouldn’t he, a Texan, have known that The Longhorns, written by J. Frank Dobie, the prominent University of Texas professor and folklorist, was not a novel, but a work of nonfiction?

But here is the most egregious error of all:

McCarthy’s subsequent ascension to Martin Dies’s old chairmanship of the House Un-American Activities Committee, and HUAC’s ensuing crusade against communist ‘infiltrators,’ transformed the senator into a polarizing figure across the country.”

Holy separation of powers!  A senator chaired a committee in the House of Representatives?

I still recommend the book even though it is impossible to overlook the errors.  They might have been understandable if the book had been published by some vanity press, but it wasn’t. We should be able to expect better from The Penguin Press.

Bryan Burrough earlier co-wrote a big best-seller titled Barbarians at the Gate: The Fall of RJR Nabisco and was the sole author of Public Enemies: America’s Greatest Crime Wave and the Birth of the FBI, 1933-1934.  The description on the Big Rich book jacket erroneously (imagine that) describes him as a native Texan.  His family moved to Texas when he was seven-years old, but he was born in Tennessee.  In his introduction, he mentions that some of his young classmates referred to him as a carpetbagger.


Bryan Burrough

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

FOUR FACES WEST (Sherman/UA, 1948)

DIRECTOR: Alfred E. Green; PRODUCER: Harry Sherman;  WRITERS: screenplay by C. Graham Baker and Teddi Sherman;  adaptation by William and Milarde Brent; based upon Eugene Manlove Rhodes novel, Paso Por Aqui;  CINEMATOGRAPHY: Russell Harlan

CAST: Joel MCrea, Frances Dee, Charles Bickford, Joseph Calleia, William Conrad, Martin Garralaga, Raymond Largay, Dan White, Eva Novak, Sam Flint, Forrest Taylor, William Haade, Gene Roth, Paul Burns

On the day that Pat Garrett (Charles Bickford) is being introduced to the citizens of Santa Maria, a cowboy by the name of Ross McEwen (Joel McCrea) robs the bank, which is easy to accomplish because every bank employee but one is down the street listening to Garrett give a speech.  A polite outlaw, he first asks for a loan of two thousand dollars.  When Frenger (John Parrish), the banker, asks him for collateral he pulls his six-gun and declares it all the collateral he needs.  He then writes out an I.O.U. for the money and signs it "Jefferson Davis."

Later we learn that McEwen in desperation has resorted to robbery so that he can send the money to his father who is about to lose his ranch. 

He forces the banker to ride out of town with him.  Once they have traveled several miles he leaves the banker without a mount or his boots and forced to walk back to town.  After arriving in town and announcing the hold-up, the incensed banker places a reward of three thousand dollars, dead or alive, on the head of McEwen.  That amount of money leads to a frenzied manhunt all out of proportion to the crime committed and includes not only Garrett and his deputy Clint (Dan White), but also members of a deputized posse as well as free-lancing bounty hunters.

While making preparations to board a slow-moving train, McEwen is bitten by a rattlesnake.  In a weakened condition, it is only with the aid of Monte Marquez (Joseph Calleia) that he is able to board the train.  Luckily, one of the passengers on the train is a nurse, Fay Hollister (Frances Dee), and she is able to treat McEwen's snakebite.  Fay feels an immediate attraction to McEwen and  senses that he is in some kind of trouble.  The attraction is clearly reciprocal.

Eventually, Ross and Fay arrive in Alamogordo where Fay will be working in a hospital.  Alamogordo was also Monte's destination.  He owns a saloon in that town.  He has befriended Ross on their journey and has helped the outlaw out of several tough spots along the way.  Now he helps Ross get a job working on a nearby ranch.  Ross sends some of the money that he earns on the job (and gambling) to the bank in Santa Maria to pay off part of the I.O.U. that he gave the banker.  However, he is forced to flee when Garrett and his deputy ride into town.  But before leaving, he gives Fay a ring.

Ross says goodbye

As he makes his way southward in an effort to reach the border, McEwen resorts to an unusual mode of transportation to escape from his pursuers.  He saddles a steer and rides it across New Mexico's White Sands.  The scene is wonderfully filmed by Russell Harlan, who had worked with Sherman on the Hopalong Cassidy series, which was the best photographed B-Western films of them all, and also on Sherman's other post-Hoppy Western, RAMROD (Sherman/UA).  In fact, Harlan's photography is one of the best qualities found in all of Sherman's exceptional productions.  He would go on to an outstanding career as one of Hollywood's best cinematographers.

McEwen is on the verge of making his way across the border when he stops to steal a horse.  Inside the house, however, he discovers a Mexican family of four, all stricken with diphtheria.  Does he ride on and escape into Mexico?  Or does he stay and do what he can for the family?  

Well, the answer is obvious, isn't it?  This is Joel McCrea after all. During the hold-up, he writes an I.O.U. and gives it to the banker.  Later, he even begins to pay the money back. He doesn't even fire a shot in the entire movie, but does neither Pat Garrett nor anyone else.  In fact, that is the one thing the film is noted for: a Western in which there is not a single gunshot.  Weapons are pulled and aimed, but never fired.

Of course he stays.  Eventually he even lights a bonfire in an attempt to attract help.  It works.  But guess whom it attracts.  How does it all end?  Revealing that would spoil the story.

In the history of Western movies, Harry "Pop" Sherman (1884-1952) was one of the more interesting producers.  Throughout most of his career, he was able to produce independent films that were then released and distributed by major studios.

He is best known for creating the production company that in 1935 began filming the Hopalong Cassidy B-Western series.  During those years, however, he also produced a number of one-shot B-Western specials that were always entertaining.  In the mid-40's, he turned over production of the Hoppy series to its star, William Boyd, and ventured into A-Western territory.  He produced BUFFALO BILL (1944) for Fox.  What followed was even better, two superior Westerns made by his production company and released through United Artists: RAMROD (1947) and FOUR FACES WEST (1948).  The three films, all starring Joel McCrea, are the last films produced by Sherman.  All in all, it was quite a good track record.

The screenplay was based on a short novel by Eugene Manlove Rhodes that was originally published in The Saturday Evening Post in 1926Its title, Paso Por Aqui (I passed here), was a reference to an inscription on a huge sandstone formation located in New Mexico.  The Spaniards had named it El Morro (The Headland) and the Anglos christened it Inscription Rock.  Today it is a national monument.

The National Park Service finds itself in the somewhat ironic position of protecting the old inscriptions while attempting to prevent any modern additions.
As a result of his days as a cowboy and rancher, Rhodes had an intimate knowledge of this part of New Mexico.  Not only did he live there, but he is  buried there in the San Andres Mountains. 

The inscription on Rhodes gravestone reads "Paso por aqui"

Of course, the screenwriters, which included Harry Sherman's daughter, Teddi, took liberties with Rhodes' original story.  They modified the ending and added the romance angle.  There was a nurse in the original story, but there was no romantic attachment.  The screenplay also makes Pat Garrett something he was not, a U.S. marshal.  The real Garrett was a county sheriff as he was in Rhodes story.  Rhodes would have known that since he was personally acquainted with the lawman.

Pat Garrett

Eugene Manlove Rhodes

The title was changed, too. Monte explains the meaning of the paso por aqui inscription on El Morro to Ross and Fay, but it was not retained as the title.  It is impossible to explain the title that was selected.  I suppose the four faces are represented by Ross, Fay, Monte, and Pat Garrett.  However, the movement in the film is not toward the West, but always southward.

McCrea made his first film appearance in 1924 and was given his first lead role in THE SILVER HORDE (RKO, 1929), an outdoor adventure yarn set in Alaska.  For the next fifteen years, the versatile actor went on to star mostly in comedies and melodramas, but also an occasional Western.  But beginning with BUFFALO BILL in 1944, McCrea would star almost exclusively in Western films.

In a 1978 interview, McCrea was quoted as saying: "I liked doing comedies, but as I got older I was better suited to do Westerns. Because I think it becomes unattractive for an older fellow trying to look young, falling in love with attractive girls in those kinds of situations...Anyway, I always felt so much more comfortable in the Western. The minute I got a horse and a hat and a pair of boots on, I felt easier. I didn't feel like I was an actor anymore. I felt like I was the guy out there doing it."

Mr. and Mrs. Joel McCrea

Frances Dee and Joel McCrea were one of Hollywood's great romantic teams.  No, not because of the films they appeared in, but because they were married to each other for fifty-seven years.  They met during the filming of THE SILVER CORD in 1933.  They married that year and went on to appear together in three other films, with FOUR FACES WEST being the last one. Dee made her final film appearance in GYPSY COLT in 1954.  

McCrea died in 1990 on the date of the couples' fifty-seventh anniversary.  Dee lived another fourteen years, dying at age ninety-six.

Bickford and Dee
Charles Bickford was one of Hollywood's greatest supporting actors.  He received nominations for an Academy Award for his supporting roles in THE SONG OF BERNADETTE (1943), THE FARMER'S DAUGHTER (1947), and JOHNNY BELINDA (1948).  He gave strong performances in Western films such as DUEL IN THE SUN 1947), THE BIG COUNTRY (1958), and THE UNFORGIVEN (1960)In fact, his last film role was in a Western: A BIG HAND FOR A LITTLE LADY (1966).

He was at his peak as a supporting actor at the time that he appeared in FOUR FACES WEST.  In it, he is one of the screen's best Pat Garretts.    

Joseph Calleia was not Hispanic, though he was often cast as one.  He was born Giuseppe Maria Spurrin-Calleja on the island of Malta.  His other Western roles include THE BAD MAN OF BRIMSTONE (1937), MY LITTLE CHICKADEE (1940), WYOMING (1940), BRANDED (1951) and John Wayne's THE ALAMO (1960).

Joseph Calleia

Brian Garfield wrote in Western Films: A Complete Guide that FOUR FACES WEST is "a splendid example of what a low-budget Western can be; its excellence is such that it can make you feel as if you've never seen a Western before."

A reviewer with the New York Times wrote that "FOUR FACES WEST emerges not only as a surprising film, but as an adult and edifying film."

Both FOUR FACES WEST and Sherman's earlier film, RAMROD, received generally good reviews.  Today they are considered to be two of the best Westerns of their era.  Unfortunately, however, neither did well at the box office and Sherman never produced another film.


Thursday, June 12, 2014

TEXAS LITERARY OUTLAWS: Six Writers in the Sixties and Beyond by Steven L. Davis

Texas Literary Outlaws: Six Writers in the Sixties and Beyond, published in 2004, is a survey of the lives and works of six writers, all friends, who put their state on the literary map for the first time, and had a rip-roaring good time while doing it.  It seems that the only things they took seriously were friendship, partying, and writing.  Steven L. Davis’ account is thoroughly researched and well written.  Even though it is a scholarly work, it reads like a good novel.
Steven L. Davis


Given the fact that this group of good ol' boys burned the candle at both ends, it is difficult to believe how they were able to accomplish much writing.  But they did, with one exception: Billy Lee Brammer.

Born in Dallas in 1929, Brammer published his only book, The Gay Place, in 1961 when he was only thirty-one years old.  Although the word gay was beginning to take on a sexual connotation at the time, it was used here in its more traditional sense.  Brammer’s writing was greatly influenced by F. Scott Fitzgerald and the title comes from a Fitzgerald poem: “I know a gay place/Nobody knows.

Depicting life in Austin during the fifties, it has been called Texas’ first urban novel. It consists of three novellas that are linked together by the character of Governor Arthur “Goddamn” Fenstermaker, who was obviously based on Lyndon B. Johnson.

As the years went by, Brammer became more and more addicted to hard drugs and though he was able to write an occasional magazine article, he was never able to finish another book.  He died from a drug overdose in 1978.  He was forty-eight years old.

It was a tremendous waste of talent, but as Davis writes, it was Brammer who showed the way for his five friends.



Born in Ft. Worth in 1929, Jenkins is the most famous of the six. He left Texas and took a job with a fledgling sports magazine called Sports Illustrated and stayed with them for twenty-four years.  He specialized in stories about golf and college football and eventually became the magazine’s star writer.
In 1972, Jenkins published his first novel, Semi-Tough, a comedic romp about the adventures of two NFL players.  It became a bestseller and was later made into a hit movie starring Burt Reynolds and Kris Kristofferson.
Now retired from SI, Jenkins has written more than twenty books, his latest being His Ownself: A Semi-Memoir. 



No, not that Larry King.  I’m talking about the writer, you know, the talented Larry King.  The one in the picture.

He was also born in 1929, but way out in the western part of the state, near the little town of Putnam.  His only novel, The One-Eyed Man – based on a character similar to Louisiana governor Earl Long – did not receive many good reviews and did not do much business. (I read it years ago and remember liking it.  I have a copy and hope to re-read it in order to see if I missed something.)

King made his mark originally as one of the country’s most respected magazine writers.  However, he is the only writer to be nominated for a National Book Award (for non-fiction), a Broadway Tony, and a TV Emmy.

The play for which King received his Tony nomination was “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas.”  He protested the fact that it was turned into a musical (he lost the argument) and he protested when Burt Reynolds and Dolly Parton were cast in the lead roles when it was filmed by Hollywood (he lost the argument).

To his dismay, it also became his best-known work.  He knew that it probably would be the lead when his obituary was written.  It was.

King died in 2012 at age eighty-three.



He was born in Dallas in 1934.  He began his career as a police reporter before becoming a sportswriter.  At one time, the Fort Worth Press employed Cartwright, Dan Jenkins, and Bud Shrake in their sports department under the leadership of another legendary Texas sportswriter, Blackie Sherrod.

After he left the newspaper business, Cartwright became a freelance writer whose work was primarily published in magazines.  His novels were not critical successes, but in later years he published two successful true crime books set in Texas: Blood Will Tell and Dirty Dealing.


5). PETER GENT (pronounced ‘Jent’)

George Davis Peter Gent is somewhat of an outlier.  For one thing, he was born in Michigan.  He was a four-sport star in high school and was later a star basketball player at Michigan State.  Although he was drafted by the NBA’s Baltimore Bullets, he accepted a try out invitation from the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys.  Despite not playing college football, the Cowboys signed him as a wide receiver.  Ironically, he played opposite Bob Hayes, who also did not play college football, but was an Olympic sprinter.  Also on the team was another basketball player, Cornell Green, who played defensive back.

Gent’s NFL career, primarily because of injuries, lasted only five years.  But after his retirement, he continued to make his home in Dallas and he became friends with the five writers.  Because of their encouragement, especially that of Shrake, he decided to write a football novel.  Five years after he played his last game, he published North Dallas Forty, which was a critical and commercial success.

Whereas Dan Jenkins had approached the game with a whimsical eye, Gent took off the gloves and blasted the Cowboys and the NFL in general for what he felt were dehumanizing practices that drove players to drug addiction in order to fight the pain they experienced.  The two main characters in the novel are a pass receiver (based on Gent) and a quarterback (based on his buddy, Don Meredith).  They are the good guys.  The bad guys are the coach (based on the legendary Tom Landry) and the general manager (based on Tex Schramm).

In 1979, the novel was filmed with Nick Nolte as the wide receiver and singer Mac Davis, yes Mac Davis, as the quarterback.  Not only was it a hit, but the game action scenes are some of the best Hollywood ever produced – perhaps the best ever.

After his huge success with both his novel and film, Gent continued to write and later published three more novels, but none enjoyed the success of his debut.  Eventually Gent returned to Michigan and died there in 2011.



Bud Shrake was born in Ft. Worth in 1931.  He attended high school with Dan Jenkins and they became friends while writing for the school newspaper.  Shrake followed Jenkins in the newspaper business to Ft. Worth and Dallas and then to Sports Illusrtrated.

Shrake, an extremely versatile writer, was a sportswriter, police reporter, magazine writer, biographer, screenwriter, playwright, and novelist. Davis also gives him the highest marks among the six when it comes to talent.

None of his ten novels experienced commercial success, but two have become cult classics.  Blessed McGill, published in 1968, was his third novel and is considered to be his best.  The story is narrated by one Peter Hermano McGill, a half-Irish, half-Spanish adventurer who roamed the American southwest and Mexico in the years after the Civil War. Although McGill is self-educated, he is a good writer and a great storyteller who weaves his life story through flashback episodes that are not always related in chronological order. True, that narrative device has the effect of keeping the reader in the dark and guessing at times, but in the end, everything falls into place and the reader learns why the nickname "Blessed" is bestowed upon him; but I'm not telling.

In his review of the book, Larry McMurtry called it a “black-humor” Western.

The other cult favorite is "Strange Peaches."  Published in 1972, the semi-autobiographical novel is set in Dallas just before and just after the assassination of JFK.  The two main characters are patterned on Shrake and his friend Gary Cartwright.

Also by Shrake: 



J.W. COOP (1971)

DIRECTOR: Cliff Robertson;  PRODUCER: Cliff Robertson;  WRITERS: screenplay by Edwin "Bud" Shrake, Gary Cartwright and Cliff Robertson;  CINEMATOGRAPHER: Frank Stanley

CAST: Cliff Robertson, Geraldine Page, Cristina Ferrare, R.G. Armstrong, R.L. Armstrong, John Crawford, Wade Crosby

KID BLUE (1973)

DIRECTOR: James Frawley;   PRODUCER: Marvin Schwartz;  WRITER: Edwin "Bud" Shrake;  CINEMATOGRAPHER: Billy Williams

CAST: Dennis Hopper, Warren Oates, Peter Boyle, Ben Johnson, Lee Purcell, Janice Rule, Ralph Waite, Howard Hesseman, M. Emmet Walsh 

 SEMI-TOUGH (1977)

DIRECTOR: Michael Ritchie; PRODUCER: David Merrick; WRITERS: screenplay by Walter Bernstein based upon novel of same name by Dan Jenkins; CINEMATOGRAPHER: Charles Rosher, Jr.

CAST: Burt Reynolds, Kris Kristofferson, Jill Clayburgh, Robert Preston, Bert Convy


DIRECTOR: Ted Kotcheff;  PRODUCER: Frank Yablans;  WRITERS: screenplay by Frank Yablans, Ted Kotcheff and Peter Gent based upon novel of same name by Peter Gent;  CINEMATOGRAPHER: Paul Lohmann

CAST: Nick Nolte, Mac Davis, Charles Durning, Dayle Haddon, Bo Svenson, John Matuszak, Steve Forrest, G.D. Spradlin, Dabney Coleman


DIRECTOR: Arthur Hiller;  PRODUCER: Martin Ransohoff;  WRITERS: screenplay by Edwin "Bud" Shrake, Steve Shagan and Martin Cruz Smith based upon novel of same name by Martin Cruz Smith;  CINEMATOGRAPHER: Charles Rosher, Jr.

CAST:  Nick Mancuso, David Warner, Kathryn Harrold, Stephen Macht, Strother Martin, Ben Piazza

TOM HORN (1980)

DIRECTOR: William Wiard;  PRODUCERS: Fred Weintraub and Steve McQueen;  WRITERS: screenplay by Thomas McGuane and Edwin "Bud" Shrake;  CINEMATOGRAPHER: John A. Alonzo

CAST: Steve McQueen, Linda Evans, Richard Farnsworth, Billy Green Bush, Slim Pickens, Elisha Cook, Jr., Geoffrey Lewis 


DIRECTOR: Colin Higgins;  PRODUCERS: Robert L. Boyett, Peter Macgregor-Scott, Edward K. Milkis and Thomas L. Miller;  WRITERS: screenplay by Larry L. King, Peter Masterson and Colin Higgins based upon play by Larry L. King and Peter Masterson;  CINEMATOGRAPHY: William A. Fraker

CAST: Burt Reynolds, Dolly Parton, Dom DeLuise, Charles Durning, Jim Nabors, Robert Mandan, Lois Nettleton, Noah Beery, Jr., Barry Corbin, Theresa Merritt


DIRECTOR: Alan Rudolph;  PRODUCER: Sydney Pollock;  WRITER: Edwin "Bud" Shrake;  Cinematography: Matthew F. Leonetti 

CAST:  Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Melinda Dillon, Rip Torn, Lesley Ann Warren

PAIR OF ACES (1990) (TV movie)

DIRECTOR: Aaron Lipstadt;  PRODUCER: Cyrus Yavneh;  WRITERS: screenplay by Edwin "Bud" Shrake and Gary Cartwright;  CINEMATOGRAPHER: Tim Suhrstedt

CAST: Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Helen Shaver, Rip Torn, Lash LaRue

DIRECTOR: Bill Bixby;  PRODUCER: Cyrus Yaneh;  WRITERS: screenplay by Rob Gilmer based upon characters created by Edwin "Bud" Shrake and Gary Cartwright;  CINEMATOGRAPHER: Chuck Colwell

CAST:  Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Joan Severance, Rip Torn

TEXAS JUSTICE (1995) TV mini-series

DIRECTOR: Dick Lowry;  PRODUCER: Nancy Hardin;  WRITERS: teleplay by T.S. Cook based upon Gary Cartwright novel, Blood Will Tell;  CINEMATOGRAPHER: Steven Fierberg

CAST: Peter Strauss, Heather Locklear, Dennis Franz, Lewis Smith, Susan Walters