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The Cowboy Star (1936)

Tired of being a cowboy movie star, Yorke quits the movies and buys a ranch so he can be a real cowboy. But just as in his films trouble arrives. This time it's bank robber Sampson and his two cronies.



(screen play), (story) | 1 more credit »


Complete credited cast:
Johnny Sampson
Clem Baker (as Ed Piel Sr.)
Jimmy Baker
Ralph McCullough ...
Pretty Boy Hogan
Richard Terry ...
Midget Jack James
Jack Kingswell


Movie cowboy star Spencer Yorke, tired of the Hollywood life, refuses to sign the new contract offered him by producer Jack Kingswell, and he and his pal Buckshot go to Arizona in search of a ranch to buy. The cowtown of Taylorsville is so dull that Sheriff Clem Baker bemoans the lack of criminal activity, and his daughter Mary, a real estate agent, finds the town equally boring. Her kid brother Jimmy, a big fan of Spencer Yorke, tries to persuade his father to let him visit "Ghost Town," nearby and deserted. Upon his arrival, Jimmy recognizes Spencer, but he insists his name is George Weston. Mary discovers his true identity when she sells him a ranch, but she gives him a pledge of secrecy. Three big-city gangsters, Johnny Sampson, Pretty-Boy Hogan and "Midget", fleeing their latest crime, are hiding out in the closed saloon in "Ghost Town." Jimmy, disobeying his father, rides into the town and is taken prisoner by the criminals as they believe he has been sent to spy on them. They ... Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He Rode Out of the Movies into an Avalanche of Action! (original poster) See more »


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

20 November 1936 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Victor High Fidelity Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Nick Copeland is listed as a cast member by a modern source, but he was not seen in the movie. See more »


Home on the Range
(1904) (uncredited)
Music by Daniel E. Kelley
Hummed by Charles Starrett
See more »

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User Reviews

Take Me Back To My Boots and Saddles
9 October 2012 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Not that Charles Starrett in the film and real life wasn't making a good living using both, but The Cowboy Star casts Starrett as a movie cowboy who was once a real cowboy before being spotted by a Hollywood producer. As he's about to sign with his picture company again, Starrett refuses telling all that he just wants to get back to being a real cowboy without the celebrity trappings. So he and real sidekick Si Jenks pull out and head for an obscure part of Arizona to buy a ranch. All under assumed aliases.

The future Durango Kid and Jenks get themselves involved with the local manhunt of three public enemies, the baddest of them played by Marc Lawrence. And Starrett gets involved with Iris Meredith who has a hero worshiping little brother Wally Albright who knows Starrett is his cowboy hero and not some nobody.

The Cowboy Star was a nice idea, but it went astray like some maverick. You will not believe how stupid these Most Wanteds are and how a kid pulls the wool over their eyes.

Still I'm sure the Saturday matinée crowd enjoyed this in 1936.

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