25 Facts About John Ford

1. John Ford was listed as the fifth most influential director of all time by MovieMaker.

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2. John Ford claimed he didn't vote for either Goldwater or Johnson in 1964, but he supported Richard Nixon in 1968 and became a supporter of the Vietnam War.

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3. John Ford was the first recipient of the American Film Institute Life Achievement Award in 1973.

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4. John Ford was the first director to win consecutive Best Director awards, in 1940 and 1941.

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5. John Ford was as good as his word—for precisely seven days.

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6. John Ford is famous for his exciting tracking shots, such as the Apache chase sequence in Stagecoach or the attack on the Comanche camp in The Searchers.

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7. John Ford brought out Wayne's tenderness as well as his toughness, especially in Stagecoach.

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8. John Ford was highly intelligent, erudite, sensitive and sentimental, but to protect himself in the cutthroat atmosphere of Hollywood he cultivated the image of a "tough, two-fisted, hard-drinking Irish sonofabitch".

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9. John Ford bought a brand new Rolls-Royce in the 1930s, but never rode in it because his wife, Mary, would not let him smoke in it.

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10. John Ford died on 31 August 1973 at Palm Desert and his funeral was held on 5 September at Hollywood's Church of the Blessed Sacrament.

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11. John Ford had to move from his Bel Air home to a single-level house in Palm Desert, California, near Eisenhower Medical Center, where he was being treated for stomach cancer.

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12. John Ford made his first forays into television in 1955, directing two half-hour dramas for network TV.

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13. John Ford prepared the project but worked only one day before being taken ill, supposedly with shingles, and Elia Kazan replaced him.

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14. John Ford directed sixteen features and several documentaries in the decade between 1946 and 1956.

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15. John Ford created a part for the recovering Ward Bond, who needed money.

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16. John Ford eventually rose to become a top adviser to OSS head William Joseph Donovan.

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17. John Ford was commissioned as a commander in the United States Navy Reserve.

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18. John Ford was named Best Director by the New York Film Critics, and this was one of the few awards of his career that he collected in person.

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19. John Ford is credited with playing a major role in shaping Wayne's screen image.

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20. John Ford confirmed his position in the top rank of American directors with the Murnau-influenced Irish Republican Army drama The Informer, starring Victor McLaglen.

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21. John Ford directed Fox's first all-talking dramatic featurette Napoleon's Barber, a 3-reeler which is lost.

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22. John Ford directed around thirty-six films over three years for Universal before moving to the William Fox studio in 1920; his first film for them was Just Pals.

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23. John Ford began his career in film after moving to California in July 1914.

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24. John Ford married Mary McBride Smith on July 3, 1920, and they had two children.

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25. John Ford earned the nickname "Bull" because of the way he would lower his helmet and charge the line.

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