With such a reputation for anger, Reverend Captain Clayton star Ward Bond found himself in a situation on The Searchers set one day in which he barely managed to escape the filmmaker’s wrath. One day the actor, who would walk around naked in his motel room after filming with the curtains open in the futile attempt of attracting co-star Vera Miles, realised he needed a shave and what happened next was certainly a close one.
During the filming of Ethan’s speech in which he recounted discovering and burying Lucy, Wayne nailed his first take much to Ford’s delight. However, for some strange reason, the camera had stopped which saw the director “supremely irritated”. He asked the cameraman what was wrong, only for the power to return and filming to resume.
What had happened was that Bond had pulled the plug so he could charge his electric razor. The crew knew the truth of the matter but decided not to tell Ford out of fear that the director would thump him.
Nevertheless, the director did indeed find out, long after the actor’s death of a massive heart attack in 1960. Years after The Searchers premiered, the film’s cinematographer Winton C Hoch told Ford at a Hollywood event how the late actor was responsible for losing Wayne’s perfect take. Upon hearing this “Ford’s face turned white. He was uncharacteristically speechless because he didn’t have his favourite horse’s ass to kick around anymore.”