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John Wayne poked fun at Robert Mitchum’s huge El Dorado gaffe during final scene

John Wayne's El Dorado featured Robert Mitchum making a big mistake that he solved with Duke and director Howard Hawks by incorporating it into the movie's final scenes.

John Wayne made not one, not two, but three Westerns with director Howard Hawks about a sheriff defending his office from outlaws.

In between 1959’s Rio Bravo and 1970’s Rio Lobo, the duo shot 1966’s El Dorado, which co-starred Robert Mitchum as the drunken lawman opposite Duke’s gunslinger.

Interestingly, Wayne had replaced Mitchum just a decade earlier in 1955’s Blood Alley after he was fired following a feud with the producers.

The two co-stars became good friends and their humour can be seen in how they fixed an on-screen gaffe during principal photography.

wayne and mitchum

John Wayne: Robert Mitchum’s huge El Dorado gaffe poked fun at by Duke during final scene (Image: GETTY)

Mitchum’s sheriff JP Harrah had been wounded in the right leg and needed a right-handed crutch. However, he switched this to the left in a scene when he’s driving a wagon.

The story goes that Wayne made sure that his character Cole Thornton mentioned that this had happened in one of the film’s final scenes to fix the continuity error.

Apparently, director Hawks loved this so much that he left it in the movie as a wink to the audience. However, Mitchum’s retelling of what happened is slightly different.

wayne and mitchum on crutches

El Dorado ending (Image: GETTY)

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