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Westerns

Sylvia Syms looks back through the BBC’s archives to tell the story of what is perhaps cinema’s most enduring and most visual genre.

Once upon a time in the cinema, about one fifth of all Hollywood releases were cowboy films, and the Western dominated so much that it seemed that every major star would pull on a Stetson, saddle up and - if they were lucky - ride off into the sunset. In this episode of Talking Pictures, Sylvia Syms looks back through the BBC’s archives to tell the story of what is perhaps cinema’s most enduring and most visual genre. It’s a tale covering the golden age of the 1940s and 50s, the European influence of the spaghetti westerns, and the stars that keep the western alive and popular even today, told through classic interviews with some of the biggest names to ever draw a six-shooter, including Gary Cooper, James Stewart, Yul Brynner, Paul Newman and, of course, the two giants of the genre, John Wayne and Clint Eastwood.

43 minutes

Last on

Sun 15 Sep 2019 15:15

Music Played

Timings (where shown) are from the start of the programme in hours and minutes

  • 00:24

    Elmer Bernstein

    The Magnificent Seven - Main Title And Calvera

  • 00:38

    Lennie Niehaus, Clint Eastwood

    Unforgiven: Claudia's Theme

  • 00:41

    Prefab Sprout

    Cowboy Dreams

Credits

Role Contributor
Narrator Sylvia Syms
Series Producer Simon Goretzki
Executive Producer Carla-Maria Lawson

Broadcast