erik lundegaard

Where Have You Gone, Klinton Spilsbury?

While reviewing “The Legend of the Lone Ranger” I kept searching for information on what happened to its star, Klinton Spilsbury, who, like his character, did this thing and rode away and was never heard from again.

Oddly, in our overconnected age, there's not much out there, just mashed-over bits and rumors. Someone said they saw him waiting tables in New York in the '80s. Another said he was living on a ranch in the Southwest. Nothing's defnite.

The bit below is a little less mashed-over and a little more definite. It’s from Charles Grodin’s memoir  “How I Got to be Whoever It Is I Am.” Grodin writes:

Shortly after [the movie came out, bombed, and the original Lone Ranger, Clayton Moore, was allowed to wear his mask again in publicity appearances], I was at a party and got into a conversation with a young actor who turned out to be Klinton Spilsbury, the new movie’s Lone Ranger. He told me that he was a serious actor from New York, had studied a lot, and was really doing very well moving up the ladder when this Lone Ranger opportunity came along. He said the movie was a mess. There were several scripts, and no one could agree on whether they were supposed to be funny or serious. He was having difficulty finding work because of his association with the movie and had moved back to New York to try to pick up the pieces of his career, which basically had ended.

If you know more, pass the word.

Tonto and the Lone Ranger in "The Legend of the Lone Ranger" (1981)

No, that's not Rick Springfield on the right; it's Klinton Spilsbury as John Reid, recovering from his wounds, and eyeing, for the first time, a fiery white horse.

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Posted at 07:13 AM on Thu. Mar 22, 2012 in category Movies  
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