john wayne

John Wayne Had a Hilarious Response to a Journalist Intruding on His Conversation With a Former Japanese Emperor

Movie star John Wayne drew the attention of many international figures, including former Japanese Emperor Hirohito. Various prominent figures didn’t all share positive sentiments for him, but none of them questioned his star power with American moviegoers. Emperor Hirohito and Wayne had a private conversation that a journalist asked about, although the Western legend wasn’t having any of it.
John Wayne drew international attention

Wayne first hit the silver screen in a leading role in Raoul Walsh’s The Big Trail in 1930, but it bombed at the box office. As a result, he wouldn’t see his first glowing success until 1939’s Stagecoach. It was an ensemble piece that still allowed him to shine. The Western adventure was one of many collaborations that the movie star had with legendary filmmaker John Ford.

Many critics didn’t consider Wayne a real actor at the time, believing that he was only playing himself in every role he appeared in. Nevertheless, his major successes, like Sands of Iwo Jima, earned him an Oscar nomination and further international awareness. Wayne became a global superstar whose presence demanded attention.

Wayne further cemented his stardom at the prestigious 1970 Academy Awards, where he won Best Actor in a Leading Role for his stunning performance in True Grit. However, many of his fans believed that he deserved an Oscar nomination for his final performance as J.B. Books in 1976’s The Shootist, which hit a little too close to home for many.
John Wayne met former Japanese Emperor Hirohito

Wayne had such a monumental status in Hollywood and beyond that Hirohito put meeting the movie star at the top of his list when he visited the United States in 1975. He considered the actor a symbolic representation of America, his country’s former enemy during World War II.

According to Cowboys & Indians, Wayne recalled the war movies that he made up to that point of his career. He was surprised to recall the body count and said, “I must have killed off the entire Japanese army.”

The official Wayne Twitter account shared a funny story with his fans regarding the movie star’s meeting with Hirohito. The two men had a private discussion, and a journalist asked what they spoke about. Wayne responded, “How the hell do I know? My Japanese ain’t all that great.”
Joseph Stalin wanted to assassinate him

Wayne was outspoken when it came to his political beliefs, which the emperor and other international figures were aware of. However, this part of his public persona also got him into trouble when it came to his physical safety. Joseph Stalin feared Wayne because of his constant condemnation of communism, which had such a powerful influence over Hollywood and moviegoers.

Stalin ordered Wayne’s assassination after making it clear that he “hated” and “feared” the movie star. However, he survived until 1979, when he ultimately died from stomach cancer at the age of 72. Wayne fought cancer before, coining the term “the Big C” in 1964, which took on a life of its own.

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