Eddie Dean

Eddie Dean made his name as a country-western singer on radio in the ’30s. He journeyed to Hollywood to make it in western movies, debuting in Manhattan Love Song (1934), but he could only land bit parts in features and musical shorts. His career started to take off in the early 1940s, though, and by 1945 he was among the more popular of the cowboy stars. However, several factors weighed against him rising much further: his stolid, somewhat dour screen personality, the fact that he was under contract to low-rent PRC (later Eagle-Lion) Pictures–whose shoddiness was legendary and whose westerns were not particularly popular among aficionados–and the unfortunate fact that the singing cowboy craze had pretty much run its course by the time he came along. His career can be summed up in a review of one of his films by the “New York Times”: “Instead of the usual black and white, Eddie Dean’s newest western has been shot in Cinecolor, but it’s not an improvement; you can still see him.”

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