Journal – Page 3 – John Wayne


For an insight on the life and history of John Wayne

Midnight Rider x John Wayne Collection

As a part of John Wayne Enterprises growing initiative for Made In America products we have partnered with Midnight Rider for John Wayne inspired fashion tee shirts.

Following on the heels of incredible collections for the likes of Townes Van Zandt, Tom Petty, The Band, Waylon Jennings and more, Midnight Rider introduces their newest collaborative line: The John Wayne Collection!  Inspired by what modern day western-wear has become, a mix of high fashion, street style, and rugged, genderless workwear,

Khayyam worked with graphic designer Christian Watson to create a line that will delight Wayne fans old and new. Working with fashion photographer Ramon Felix and model Terra, Khayyam drew inspiration from Alfred Stieglitz’s iconic photos of Georgia O’Keeffe for the collection’s incredibly alluring lookbook and video shoot.
As we launch the campaign and t-shirts this week, we sat down with Mitra Khayyam for her thoughts on John Wayne the icon, her inspiration for the collection and her personal and business commitment to manufacturing in America.

JWE:  How were you first introduced to John Wayne? Was it a particular movie?

Mitra:   I don’t how or when I first discovered John Wayne, as a child of immigrants, I wasn’t raised watching Westerns. I somehow stumbled onto the man, but I remember the Searchers was the first film of his I ever watched.

JWE:  As a woman, what appeals to you about John Wayne?

Mitra:  I think John Wayne often played the perfect archetype of an American hero, our own version of “Prince Charming”

JWE:  What do you think John Wayne represents today?

Mitra:  I think John Wayne represents that we can be whoever we want to be, our stories are our own to tell. You can be a boy named Marion playing football in Glendale one day, and a cowboy who goes by Duke the next.

JWE:  What was your inspiration for the collection?

Mitra:  I was inspired by playing with the idea of what modern day western-wear has become; a mix of high fashion, street style, and sexy androgyny.

JWE:  We enjoy partnering with you because of your Americana designs combined with your Made in America commitment. Will you describe this process (design and/or production) and what it means to you?

Mitra:  That’s right, all our goods are made in Los Angeles. I work with a factory in Vernon, CA that’s reasonable for cutting and sewing all our tee shirts, the tees are then dyed custom colors for us less than a mile away, printed in factories locally, hand distressed, and washed again for softness all within a 5 mile radius. It was really important for us to support our local economy, and it felt like Made in the USA would be the only way to create tees that honor so many influential icons.

Midnight Rider for John Wayne Summer 2016 from Midnight Rider on Vimeo.

The Midnight Rider x John Wayne Collection is available now at and

The Wayne Family on Father’s Day

Father’s Day is a time where we come together to honor the father figures in our lives.  For the Wayne family, this means a reflection on the values John Wayne passed down to his children.  We asked Patrick, Melinda, and Marisa Wayne to share with us what the most memorable piece of advice their father shared with them.

What is the most memorable piece of advice your father shared with you?

Patrick:  My father valued the character of a person…how each strives to live up to the core values (honesty, loyalty, trustworthiness, compassion, kindness, etc.).  We’re none of us perfect.  But each morning if we aspire to live up to those values, we are worthy of respect, regardless of success, wealth, education, breeding or popularity.

Marisa:  He told me don’t hurry, don’t worry, and don’t forget to smell the roses.  He also encouraged being active on a regular basis.

Melinda:  What comes to mind is the time I asked my father: “What is a virtue you value?” His reply was “Wisdom.”



Wishing you all a happy and thoughtful Father’s Day on behalf of John Wayne Enterprises and the Wayne Family.  We hope you enjoy the day surrounded by family and loved ones.



John Wayne Cancer Foundation announces #ShowYourGrit


Grit: Courage and Resolve; Strength of Character


A word that so accurately reflects many and for the John Wayne Cancer Foundation (JWCF) it embodies the struggle of so many patients, families, survivors and caregivers as they navigate a cancer diagnosis and journey.

John Wayne’s last wish was to find a cure for cancer and we are hard at work to accomplish that goal, but we need your help. This month, JWCF will launch Show Your Grit, a fundraising and awareness campaign to attract, engage and retain a new generation of John Wayne cancer fighters.

For 25 days, beginning on John Wayne’s Birthday, May 26th 2016, and ending on Father’s Day,

June 19th 2016, we challenge you and your extended network to put on your cowboy hat or boots, get involved, create awareness, raise money, show support and join the John Wayne movement in the fight against cancer.

How do you do this? It’s simple:

  • Put on your Cowboy Hat or bandana, take a selfie and post it in honor of John Wayne or someone you know who has battled cancer. Use our hashtag, #ShowYourGrit and challenge your friends to do the same. Spread the word to join the John Wayne movement.
  • And, on June 19th, Father’s Day, plan to honor someone in your life— just as the Wayne family children have honored their father—by taking them to a special screening of True Grit. Find a location here: ______.


Raise Funds, Create Awareness, Join the Movement— Show Your Grit! Be part of John Wayne’s Cancer Fighting Legacy.



John Wayne Day

The City Council of the City of Newport Beach, California and County of Orange Board of Supervisors each officially adopted resolutions today declaring May 26, the birthday of the enduring American icon John Wayne, as “John Wayne Day.” Newport Beach Mayor Pro Tem Kevin Muldoon was instrumental in delivering the accolade in the late actor’s name.


quoteblockI want to thank Kevin Muldoon, Duffy Duffield, Mayor Dixon and the entire City Council of Newport Beach, also supervisor Michelle Steel and the rest of the Orange County Board of Supervisors for recognizing May 26th, my fathers birthday, as John Wayne Day in Newport Beach and Orange County, a place my father started visiting in the early 1920’s. He loved this area and was eventually able to make Newport Beach his home. It’s where my sisters and I were raised and where our father is buried. I know he would be appreciative and honored by the recognition of the City of Newport and the County of Orange. His good work continues in the fight against cancer through the John Wayne Cancer Foundation, based here in Newport Beach.

Ethan-Sig 2015

Remembered as one of the greatest actors of the 20th century, Wayne is a symbol of self-reliance, determination and patriotism. A loving family man and great friend, Wayne was an avid adventurer – a hunter, horseman and fisherman. Nearly forty years after his death, his legacy is still alive in Newport Beach, the place he called home for the last 15 years of his life and visited since high school. His beloved yacht, Wild Goose, is anchored in Newport Beach Harbor and the airport in Orange County bears his name as John Wayne Airport. It’s also the place where he was laid to rest, at Pacific View Memorial Park in Corona del Mar.

“John Wayne was a true American icon, and beyond that, a Newport Beach local whose interests and values mirror everything that makes this community so special,” states Kevin Muldoon, Newport Beach Mayor Pro Tem. “He symbolized all that is great in America and our city so it is only fitting that we should honor such a great man.”

“John Wayne is a local hero for those of us in Orange County,” adds Orange County Supervisor Michelle Steel. “He helped so many while he was alive and even after his passing continues to improve the lives of others through the legacies created in his honor, like the John Wayne Cancer Foundation that has made groundbreaking advancements in cancer research.”

“Newport Beach is a community that my father loved,” says Ethan Wayne, John Wayne’s son. “I know that if he were here today he would be humbled by such an incredible honor and excited that the legacy that he built will be forever remembered on ‘John Wayne Day.’”

John Wayne still remains one of America’s most renowned larger than life luminaries whose name appears at the top of the Harris Poll’s annual listings of America’s favorite movie stars’ year after year. With a career spanning over five decades John Wayne appeared in more than 175 films. The incredibly versatile actor starred in just about every genre but it was the Western, the American cinema, where Wayne made his lasting mark. He was nominated three times for the Academy Award, winning the Oscar for Best Actor in 1969 for True Grit. Wayne was also awarded the Congressional Gold Medal and in 1980 President Jimmy Carter awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian honor. In his memory, the John Wayne Cancer Foundation was founded in 1985 by Wayne’s children and is an organization that brings courage, strength and grit to the fight against cancer.


I Love Lucy Remastered

CBS is bringing back I Love Lucy for one special night. A re-broadcasting of two back-to-back episodes from season 5 of the series, originally broadcast in October of 1955, “Lucy Visits Grauman’s” and “Lucy and John Wayne,” are the show’s more iconic episodes.

John Wayne was one of many movie stars who had guest spots on I Love Lucy during the episodes that were set in Hollywood. The two consecutive episodes guest star John Wayne as a fictional version of himself and have been edited together to tell one complete story. (Previously they have only aired separately.) Each episode has been remastered and colorized and will be presented on Friday, May 20th.

Episode recap:

“Lucy Visits Grauman’s” finds Lucy visiting Hollywood’s famed Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, where Lucy discovers that the cement slab containing John Wayne’s footprints has come loose. Lucy thinks it would be a fabulous souvenir to take home, if only she can come up with a way to take it without being caught.

In “Lucy and John Wayne,” Lucy must find a way to replace the pilfered footprints. Ricky tries to help by calling John Wayne, but as usual with Lucy, the seemingly simple task of replicating the footprints becomes a comedy of errors.

Lucy.Ep129.161 Lucy.Ep129.267 Lucy.Ep129.112

Memorable Mugs

In the early 1950s, John Wayne began a tradition of making specially engraved coffee mugs for all crew and cast members on each of his projects. According to journalist Wayne Warga’s interview in 1971 with Mary St. John, the tradition began in 1951 with Flying Leathernecks. The ceramic mugs with specially engraved images and messages became treasured possessions for anyone who worked on a Wayne movie.

“I have four of the mugs on my mantle right now,” states stuntman Terry Leonard, who indeed worked on four John Wayne pictures. “I had them specially hooked up to the bottom of my mantle so that even if there’s an earthquake, they won’t fall. I want them to survive even if nothing else does.”

In fact, production and distribution of those cups was a major job that Wayne typically entrusted to Mary St. John. During production of The Sons of Katie Elder in 1965, for instance, she typed up a list of seventy people for whom she would have to get mugs produced, plus four more for family members, with special instructions from Wayne about what to write on each cup. In the Wayne archives’ folder from that project are original sketches Wayne commissioned from a local artist to be transformed into a logo for all those mugs. Dozens of thank-you notes from appreciative crew members are also preserved in the archives from that movie, and also for the mugs handed out after production on 1963’s Donovan’s Reef, among other films.

Currently, these mugs are highly sought after collectors items, and sell online for upwards of $1000 each. Pictured here is a private collection we had the chance to photograph.


A Statement on John Wayne

We did not know that the assembly was trying to get John Wayne Day passed or we would have been there to speak on my father’s behalf. It’s unfair to judge someone on something that was said 44 years ago in an entirely different era. I know that my father, John Wayne, had a great respect for all people no matter what color race or sexual preference they were. He taught us to treat all people the same. He felt strongly that things should be earned, and not given to someone simply because they were a man or woman or one race or another. I hope that America remembers John Wayne for who he really was- a family man, a great friend, a cherished actor on the big screen, for his values and morals that have made him a role model for many and his continuing work to find a cure for cancer through the John Wayne Cancer Foundation and the John Wayne Cancer Institute.

Ethan-Sig 2015

A Look Inside Volume 10

At John Wayne Enterprises, one of our favorite things we get to work on is the John Wayne: Official Collector’s Edition magazine by Topix Media. Our latest issue, Volume 10, is the complete guide to all of Duke’s films, ranked and rated by fans. We’ve asked Senior Editor, James Ellis to give a behind the scenes look on how he approached the arduous task of ranking John Wayne’s films.



Available on newsstands now!

quoteblock“Anyone can tell the difference between a good movie and one that’s not. What’s trickier is trying to rank dozens upon dozens of movies that aren’t just good, but great. But Duke never turned away from a task, no matter how tough, and we kept that in mind as we tackled ranking all of John Wayne’s films for Volume 10 of the Official John Wayne Collector’s Edition.

We started by asking the people who love and know Duke’s films the best: the fans. Fortunately for us, it’s tougher to find someone who doesn’t love John Wayne’s movies than it is to come across someone who doesn’t enjoy the stone-cold classics the man put out year after year for decades. We reached out to thousands of fans through social media (not to mention our own friends and family) to sort out which of Duke’s movies were the ones people kept returning to again and again. After collecting endless opinions and arguments on which film deserved the rank of #1, we looked at a variety of other factors—critical consensus, how well the film performed at the box office, how much of the movie featured John Wayne to name a few—to decide how to make the tough call. The process wasn’t always pretty. Two editors almost came to blows over where True Grit should fall in the ranking. But in the end, everyone agreed with the math and evidence that put Rio Bravo on the top of the heap. Strong arguments can be made that The Searchers or Stagecoach may be more important, but the fast-paced action and fun of Rio Bravo secured its status as the one John Wayne movie you would take with you on a desert island. We realize not everyone might agree. But that’s part of the fun of putting together these lists. Think of it as starting a conversation Duke himself would have enjoyed.”


James Ellis, Senior Editor at the Official John Wayne Collector’s Edition

Marisa Wayne Facebook Q&A

This past week, we hosted a Facebook Q&A session with John Wayne’s youngest daughter, Marisa Wayne. Marisa received over 900 questions from fans in the 30 minute session, and wanted to share her thoughts on some she missed.

Check out the series below to get an insight on John Wayne through the eyes of his daughter, Marisa.


Q: Do you and all your siblings have any idea just how much your father is loved and admired by everyone in this country?

MW: Thank you!! It’s very cool to know he was loved by so many.


Q: Did your father sing to his kids, spontaneously, just for fun?

MW: I remember his big, loud, boisterous voice and I loved it!! It gives me chills when I hear him sing in certain movies and he would also whistle, especially the theme to “The High and the mighty” every time we would board a plane. Such a character! 


Q: What was his favorite topic to discuss?

MW: Oh boy. He would love a good political discussion, but also loved current events, sports and history.


Q: What is your funniest memory of your dad?

MW: He was a practical joker. When we were living in London, we had a 4 story home and he gave my sister the room on the top floor and he told her it was “supposedly” haunted. After everyone was asleep, he would wake me up and we would sneak in there and tilt the paintings on the walls and move stuff around. She would freak out in the a.m. and come running down the stairs, and he would say she was being ridiculous and he and I would laugh about it.


Q: If you could ask your dad one more question what would it be? 

MW: I don’t know. I would just like to be with him and watch the sunset and hold his hand. I wish he knew my kids, but there is nothing I feel the need to ask him because he demonstrated so much through his work and lifestyle and excellent parenting.


Q: Did he have a nickname for you?

MW: It was “precious,” until I hit him accidentally with a gold club. After that he called me “9-iron”!


Q: Is there any personal item or thing of your father’s that you carry at all times or keep in a special place? And if so, what is it/are they?

MW: I have a post card he wrote me from Singapore framed on my nightstand.


Q: What was the best advice he ever gave you?

MW: Don’t hurry, don’t worry and don’t forget to smell the flowers! Also, keep moving forward. Everyone makes mistakes, but you just have to learn from them and move ahead. Don’t dwell on the past.


Q: When you hear people talk of your father with such respect and honor how does that make you feel?

MW: Proud and happy.


Marisa thanks all fans who participated for their thoughtful questions and love of John Wayne. To follow Marisa Wayne’s public page click this link and don’t forget to follow the Official John Wayne Facebook page here!

Marisa Wayne Journal Entry

When people imagine the private life of an iconic movie star like John Wayne, they might picture lavish film premieres, black-tie events—or riding off into Western sunsets. But as his daughter, Marisa Wayne, explains, her father left his strongest impressions in quieter, more personal moments. 

Though only 13 when he passed away, Marisa’s memories of John Wayne are clear and vivid. The glimpses into her father’s private life reflect the values he broadcasted to the rest of America, and to the world at large: hard work, grit, kindness, and love for family.




Marisa Wayne and her father on set.

“People ask me all the time what it’s like to be John Wayne’s daughter and I have to say, it’s pretty darn good. He was not only an incredible family man, but he was doting, fun, playful yet also strict.

Life with him was an adventure. We were either off on some exotic location or on our boat traveling through Mexico or Canada, fishing and playing games. He truly loved having his kids around him and we were not allowed to walk by him without giving him a hug or a kiss. It was a rule and I have since imposed it upon my kids.

He would not tolerate any disrespect and he only had to look at me to make my knees tremble. You always knew when he was serious and you felt bad disappointing him. He knew this so his temper was gentle and quick. He would give you his two cents and then quickly smile and say, “Now come over here and give me a hug!”

The worst part was losing him when I was only 13 years old, but I cherish the memories and being able to watch his movies and interviews.

It was important to him that we use his name to help those with cancer so, here we are, almost 37 years later, still looking for a cure, and, I believe, with the work of the John Wayne Cancer Institute and John Wayne Cancer Foundation, we are getting closer!”

– Marisa Wayne


Do you have a question for Marisa? Join Marisa at 1:30pm PDT on March 29th for a live 30-minute Q&A on the official
John Wayne Facebook page at