Todd Gault's Movie Serial Experience

Todd Gault's Film Serial Experience: Movie serials, cliffhangers and reviews. A gallery of movie serial stars.
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Publicity Photo, Evelyn Finley

I was watching Clerks II (2006) the other night and was struck by the poignancy of the ending where the leads end up back at the Quick Stop where they started, only in better circumstances. The same could be said for western star Evelyn Finley.

Finley got her start in Hollywood in the thirties as a stunt rider thanks to her excellent horse riding skills. By the forties she had worked up from doubling stars to staring in B westerns herself. Her acting and riding skills were demonstrated throughout the decade in Arizona Frontier (1940), Dynamite Canyon (1941), Trail Riders (1942), Cowboy Commandoes (1943), Valley of Vengeance (1944), Prairie Rustlers (1945), Gunning For Justice (1948) and The Diamond Queen (1953).

She made one serial billed as Eve Anderson. Columbia's Perils of the Wilderness (1956), had her playing a Canadian Secret Agent helping a US Deputy Marshal and a Canadian Mountie break up a smuggling operation. After her brief foray into serials, unfortunately during the last year serials were being produced, Finley returned to stunt doubling.

The Clerks II correlation being that now she wasn't stunting on B westerns but for A movies and stars like Julie Adams in The Man From the Alamo (1953), Elizabeth Taylor in Elephant Walk (1954) and Olivia de Havilland in Hush…Hush, Sweet Charlotte (1964). Her final film was stunting on the big budget, all star western Silverado (1985).

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