It is confirmed! Brendan Wayne has ties to the popular Hollywood icon John Wayne – whose acting and directing career spanned four decades. John Wayne has starred in many Westerns, such as Stagecoach, The Longest Day, and True Grit. He is considered today one of the greatest actors in the history of Hollywood.
RELATED: Discover John Wayne: The Legendary Cowboy of Western Films
Well, it turns out John Wayne and Brendan Wayne are family. And he’s no less John Wayne’s grandson.
Brendan Wayne, whose real name is Daniel Brendan La Cava, was born on February 8, 1972, in Encino, Los Angeles. His mother, Mary Antonia Wayne, was one of John Wayne’s seven children.
While John Wayne passed away in 1979 – only seven years after Brendan was born – he has some early memories of the legendary actor, whom Brendan said wanted to be called “granddaddy.”
In fact, Brendan thinks of John Wayne differently from what the world might remember of him. While one would probably think of John Wayne in a cowboy hat or donning an eye patch or a fearless man riding a horse, Brendan’s image of him is shirtless on a boat as they fish together – “which I know is a very different visual image than the rest of the world has,” the actor said.
Brendan Wayne Put In Work To Hone His Craft
Of course, being born into a lineage of the greatest American Western icon often cast a frightening shadow, so Brendan Wayne chose early on to embrace it. He enrolled in the American Academy of the Dramatic Arts and began making advances in the entertainment business during his teenage years.
And just like his iconic grandfather, Brendan entered the University of Southern California, where he majored in film.
Brendan started acting in the early 2000s and landed several roles in different popular television shows such as Cold Case, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Mouth of Caddo, Angel and the Bad Man, as well as on the big screen, including Fast & Furious, and Couples Retreat, among others.
Brendan admitted that his mother quickly pointed out how intense the experience would be the moment he would pursue acting. She knows that no matter how many years since legendary actor John Wayne has died, people will always expect more from Brendan.
“If you’re gonna do it, you better know everything because they’re gonna expect you to because you’re the Duke’s grandson,” Brendan’s mother told him.
Brendan has even chosen not to use his grandfather’s last name (or, technically, his stage name since John Wayne’s real name was actually Marion Morrison). However, six years into the entertainment business and after some prompting from his team and his father’s advice, Brendan eventually went with Wayne.
He Found Fame In A Role That Might Have Surprised The Duke
While Brendan Wayne appeared in several popular shows, his greatest achievement was definitely his role in the Western science fiction mash-up Cowboys and Aliens – directed by American actor and filmmaker Jon Favreau.
Despite being nowhere near the top-billed ensembled cast, which included Harrison Ford, Daniel Craig, and Olivia Wilde, his link to John Wayne and good looks brought quite a bit of attention to Brendan.
In the action-packed sci-fi movie, Brendan played the role of Deputy Charlie Lyle in a small 1875 New Mexico town that varmints from another planet have attacked. Brendan also performed his own stunts – jumping on a horse, showing what he is truly made of.
In 2019, Brendan Wayne secured one of the most sought-after roles, Pedro Pascal’s double, in which he wore the bounty hunter’s armor for many scenes.
He has since played a major part in the success of The Mandalorian, the first live-action series in the Star Wars franchise in Disney+. The Mandalorian is also created by Jon Favreau, who is also one of its executive producers and directors.
Brendan revealed that he went through screen tests for The Mandalorian channeling his grandfather’s popular mannerisms. Brendan said he noticed that the team wanted “a very Western kind of feel.” So, he slowed everything, including how he walked and was as graceful as his grandfather.
Well, without a doubt, Brendan Wayne has kept the legacy alive – not only being John Wayne’s grandson but being the great, talented actor that he is.