06 June 2008

Great Lady-Killers of Yesteryear: Johnny Mack Brown

Like so many actors and actresses of the day, Johnny Mack Brown enjoyed a fair bit of popularity at the end of the silent era. He shared the screen with such leading ladies as Greta Garbo, Joan Crawford, Anita Page and even Mary Pickford (hence the expression "macking it" and "mack daddy"). A noteworthy achievement in an of itself, but Johnny's successes were not limited to the silver screen. He was the featured Halfback for the Alabama Crimson Tide (where his nickname was "the Dothan Antelope," after his hometown of Dothan, Alabama), and achieved MVP honors in the 1926 Rose Bowl. Seriously, if Johnny Mack Brown had a lightsaber, it would have "Bad Motherfucker" engraved on the hilt.

Unfortunately, his big-name success did not last terribly long--though he was being groomed to be one of MGM's leading men, the studio execs opted to go for some guy named Clark Gable instead. Johnny went on to star in a myriad of B-movie westerns, however, so it wasn't a total wash.

The above photo was originally found on Virtual Film History.

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