Ray Nazarro

Active - 1935 - 1964  |   Born - Jan 1, 1902   |   Genres - Western, Action, Adventure

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Biography by AllMovie

Boston-born Ray Nazarro entered the movie business during the silent era, and began directing short films in 1932 with The Rent Page. He spent the next 13 years working in two-reelers, honing an approach to filmmaking that was quick, lean, and eminently desirable, before he became a feature film director at Columbia Pictures, beginning with Outlaws of the Rockies (1945) at Columbia. Nazarro did the vast majority of his work for Columbia, and was one of the busiest directors in the lot of any major studio -- from 1945 thru 1955, he worked at a furious pace, directing as many as 13 pictures in one year. These were almost all B-westerns, very quickly but also very well made, lean and uncluttered, with an emphasis on action but also a serious elegiac view of the west -- among the best of them were Al Jennings of Oklahoma (1951) and The Black Dakotas (1954), although all of Nazarro's movies are worth watching. At the end of the '50s, with the market for B-westerns drying up in America, Nazarro picked up his career in Europe with features such as the German-made Dog Eat Dog (1964) and the Italian Arrivederci Cowboy (1967), and also began working in television. Writing in The B-Directors, Wheeler W. Dixon cites his work as comparable to that of Budd Boetticher, but with less sentimentality.

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