FOR­GOT TEN HEROES

ONCE THEY WERE HUGE — NOW WE’D BE AMAZED TO SEE THEM MAKE A TARZAN-STYLE COME­BACK

Empire (UK) - - FRONT PAGE -

JUN­GLE JIM

Johnny Weiss­muller’s sig­na­ture role af­ter Tarzan was a sa­fari-suited hunter based on a news­pa­per comic strip. He starred in 16 films be­tween 1948 and 1956, and in the last three, thanks to rights is­sues, the char­ac­ter was also called Johnny Weiss­muller.

THE SHADOW

Though more of a ra­dio hero, this masked vig­i­lante did en­joy a healthy sec­ondary ca­reer on film. Six shorts, a se­rial and four fea­tures were made be­tween 1931 and 1958. Russell Mulc­ahy made a new movie in 1994, star­ring Alec Baldwin, but it flopped.

BLONDIE

Comic-strip hero­ine Blondie Boopadoop ditzed through 28 com­edy fea­ture film ad­ven­tures be­tween 1938 and 1950. Penny Sin­gle­ton — also the voice of Jane Jet­son — played her in ev­ery one.

ROY ROGERS

Singing cow­boy Rogers made more than 100 movies dur­ing the ’30s, ’40s and ’50s, usu­ally play­ing a char­ac­ter called Roy Rogers. He was a mer­chan­dis­ing phe­nom­e­non, his name be­com­ing a brand sec­ond only to Walt Dis­ney.

ROCKET MAN

Noth­ing to do with El­ton John but the ba­sis for the later Rock­e­teer comics and 1991 Dis­ney movie, the masked and jet-packed Rocket Man was the hero of four 12-part Repub­lic Pic­tures film se­ri­als be­tween 1949 and 1953.

CHARLIE CHAN

The glo­be­trot­ting Honolulu de­tec­tive in­ves­ti­gated 50-odd screen cases be­tween 1926 and 1949. Usu­ally played by a white ac­tor (the Swedish Warner Oland from 1931 to 1938), he’s now seen as an out­dated Asian stereo­type.

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