Roy Rogers and Trucolor

Trucolor was preceded by Magnacolor – used mainly in Republic Pictures films. We have discussed TRUCOLOR on this Blog before, I know but it is quite fascinating.

Roy Rogers starred in Nineteen Trucolor films for Republic Pictures from 1947 up to 1950 but for whatever reason, even as early as 1952, some of these were re-issued in Black and White. It seems that by the  early fifties Television had really knocked the market for B Westerns at the cinema, so these were released in Black and White mainly to save costs Many Roy Rogers films were sold to TV in 1956 but with some cuts to the running time. That sadly meant that a lot of the original footage was discarded and thrown away – so unless a Private Collector has them – and they may well have a copy – then these would be lost. Magnacolor   Roy Rogers Trucolor

By the early Seventies it was discovered that some of the old Nitrate Colour Films were unstable and therefore unsafe and so they were destroyed. I do have a Video of the film Come Next Spring made in 1956 and this was in Trucolor and to be honest it was very good colour I thought. Other films in Trucolor – The Last Command (1955)  and   Montana Belle, a Western starring Jane Russell as outlaw Belle Starr in 1948. This film was made by  independent producer Howard Welsch for intended release by Republic Pictures but was bought back by RKO, to whom Jane Russell was under contract, and released by them in 1952. Republic also made a South Seas adventure Fair Wind to Java (1953)  Nicholas Ray made notable use of Trucolor for his  1954 western, Johnny Guitar, which starred Joan Crawford. Trucolor went on location to Europe as William Dieterle filmed the life of Richard Wagner in Magic Fire (1956) and  Lisbon (1956) directed by and starring Ray Milland.  However, John Ford refused to film The Quiet Man (1952) in Trucolor despite Republic’s head Herbert J. Yates insisting on the process, so Technicolor was used.


One of theTRUCOLOR films of Roy Rogers has recently come to light in its original uncut form – Sunset in the West :- Directed by William Witney Starring Roy Rogers, Estelita Rodriguez, Penny Edwards, Gordon Jones, Will Wright, Foy Willing And The Riders Of The Purple Sage Sunset in the West

The availability, or absence, of the Roy Rogers Trucolor films of late 40s and early 50s is mentioned above – but here is some GOOD NEWS !!. The arrival of one of these FILMS in Colour and uncut is always worth celebrating — and we get this next one, Sunset In The West (1950), on DVD and Blu-Ray.

Another one is Bells of Colornado from 1950, again in Trucolor and the only Roy Rogers film in Trucolor to get an official DVD release at the time.

Bells of Colorado 1950


Also – just come across this Promotional Gift from the era which  is very colourful – as below :-

Promotional Gift Roy Rogers

It is a Playing Card Set in a special tin box. It looks quite stylish.


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