In Bernard Eisenschitz’s 1993 biography Nicholas Ray: An American Journey, Johnny Guitar’s credited screenwriter Philip Yordan (who may or may not have actually written the 1954 Sedona-filmed classic) recalled a chat with the director, who was at wit’s end dealing with combative Joan Crawford. “Well, why don’t you do this, Nick?” Yordan suggested. “It’ll only be another six weeks. Get up every morning, look in the mirror, and when you shave, say, ‘Look, I’ve only got five more weeks and I’ll never have to see Joan Crawford again.’ ... He looked at me a long time – I’ll never forget this – and he said, ‘You know, never is a long time.’ ”
Having played host to more than 60 Hollywood productions—from the early years of cinema through the 1970s—Sedona, Arizona’s unsung role in American film is the topic of this blog. Here, once and for all Sedona gets her due as a key location in movie history, a silent but stunning backdrop to all genres of movies including silent films, B westerns, World War II propaganda, and film noir.