The much-decorated WWII hero and western movie star appeared opposite Walter Brennan and Jay Silverheels in director Nathan Juran's 1954 drama.
Audie Murphy was one of the most decorated U.S. combat soldiers to serve during World War II, and one of the popular stars of western movies during the 1950s and ‘60s. To celebrate his birthday — he was born June 20, 1925 in Kingston, Texas — we’re taking another look at one of our favorite films to feature the late, great American hero, Drums Across the River.
Directed by Nathan Juran (Good Day for a Hanging, Land Raiders) and co-starring Walter Brennan, Hugh O’Brian, Lyle Bettger, Lisa Gaye, and Jay Silverheels — yep, Tonto himself — the 1954 Universal Pictures release has Murphy cast as Gary Brannon, a young wagon freighter in a Colorado mining town who gets caught in the crossfire when a land-grabbing varmint (Bettger) tries to stir up trouble between credulous townspeople and Ute Indians. Why does the villain attempt such villainy? Because there’s gold on the Ute tribespeople’s land.