Wyatt Earp has been the subject of 13 major feature films…and has appeared in dozens of television shows. Which portrayals stand up to the scrutiny of history?
- James Garner– Hour of the Gun : Dark, torn, repressed…Earp at his most troubled. Garner is the real deal in this John Sturges classic.
- Kurt Russell- Tombstone : A good mix of Earp the capitalist and Earp the lawman, Russell is workman-like in his performance. Unfortunately, Val Kilmer steals the show as Holliday.
- Henry Fonda- My Darling Clementine : Fonda portrays a humorless Earp? Who would have guessed? John Ford’s masterpiece is short on history, long on drama.
- Hugh O’Brian- The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp : Dapper dresser, serious lawman, frontier justice personified….O’Brian brought a believable Earp to the small screen.
- Kevin Costner – Wyatt Earp : Properly displaying Earp’s stern disposition, Costner is almost too dour in his 1994 performance. Wyatt didn’t overpower his brothers like a misguided patriarch.