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Above is a 1923 tradepaper ad for Horner silents.

Bottom left corner is a photo of George Chesebro and Eva Novak is pictured in the bottom right. Chesebro worked in about a dozen of Horner's sound westerns. Novak and Chesebro were witnesses to the September, 1923 marriage of Horner to Frieda Bohnn.




Above is a 1927 tradepaper ad for Horner silents. "Pawnee Bill Jr." was played by Ted Wells and "Kit Carson" was William Barrymore / Boris Bullock.

THE MANSION OF MYSTERY serial was completed and released in late 1927. William Barrymore had the lead, Horner directed, and distribution was handled by William M. Pizor and his Capitol Film Exchange company. MANSION is among the lost / missing serials. Horner must have liked Barrymore - or his salary demands were cheap - as he appears in about fifteen Horner silent and sound films.


Left is a 1930 theater ad for one of Horner's early sound films, SOUTH OF SONORA (1930) with Buffalo Bill Jr. (Jay Wilsey), which played in a few theaters but is another of the lost / missing westerns. Trades reported that the negative was destroyed in a fire:

January 21, 1930 Exhibitors Daily Review and Motion Pictures Today: "The complete negative of 'South of Sonora', a five reel talker with Buffalo Bill, Jr., and Berry Joy ... were destroyed by a fire in the cutting room of the Photo-Kinema Film Laboratories in North Seward St. ..."

July 16, 1930 Film Daily: "Robert J. Horner has completed direction of 'South of Sonora', featuring Buffalo Bill, Jr. This subject was produced by Gene Marcus and Dwain Esper. Horner will immediately start production on 'The Riding Kid from Arizona' ..." (That Riding Kid is probably THE KID FROM ARIZONA with Jack Perrin.)



(From Old Corral collection)

THE APACHE KID'S ESCAPE (Robert J. Horner, 1930) was Horner's first talking picture.

The photo inset in this lobby card shows Perrin and his trusty steed Starlight.

Below is the title lobby card for Perrin's LARIATS AND SIX-SHOOTERS (Robert J. Horner, 1931) which is among the lost / missing westerns.

These were among the several that Jack Perrin did for Horner in 1930 - 1932 ... and Perrin had trouble getting all of his pay (see newspaper article on prior page).




(Courtesy of Richard Harrison)




(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above is a photo of a title lobby card showing Franklyn Farnum and Bill Cody in BORDER GUNS (Aywon, 1934), one of a trio of films that Cody did for Horner.



(Courtesy of Ed Tabor)

TEX TAKES A HOLIDAY (Argosy, 1932) was shot in "Multicolor", an early two-strip color process. Horner was the producer. The star was Wallace MacDonald (with light blue shirt and moustache above), and he had a brief fling in front of the camera before becoming a B film producer at Columbia Pictures. He also worked for Multicolor. The player with the handful of knives is Steve Clemento / Clemente, who was a knife-throwing expert. TEX TAKES A HOLIDAY (Argosy, 1932) is one of the lost / missing westerns.

The Variety review of TEX TAKES A HOLIDAY was not kind to the film and color process: "In black and white this might have eased through as a second-grade western, but in color, it is very weak. It is wholly spoiled by about as poor an exhibition of bad color work as has been brought forward yet. On top of this, much of it seems to be slightly out of register, giving an out-of-focus effect. It will not be in the running even in the minor houses."

On a positive note, give Horner credit for trying color (in 1932). On the negative side, why did Horner even attempt to use an early color process on a dirt-cheap western in 1932? Les Adams did some sleuthing in his copies of Film Daily and found the answer:

The 1932 Film Daily Yearbook has Wallace MacDonald, hero of TEX TAKES A HOLIDAY, as the sales manager for Multicolor, Ltd. (700 Romaine St.). Robert J. Horner shared the following with Multicolor Productions - location, address and telephone number - Cinephone Studios, 4376 Sunset Drive, OLympia 8701. So did Burton King. And Harry S. Webb and Flora E. Douglas and Cliff Broughton Productions. And Thrillo-dramas and United Producers, Ltd and Action Pictures.

In the 1937 Film Daily Product Guide and Directors' Annual, Horner is the president of two companies, Roadshow Classics and American Pictures Corp., and he was still using that 4376 Sunset Drive, Hollywood address.



(Courtesy of Ed Tabor)

Above are Wallace MacDonald with heroine Virginia Brown Faire in another lobby card from TEX TAKES A HOLIDAY (Argosy, 1932).





(Courtesy of Les Adams)
A few minutes of "Black King, the horse with the human brain", was added to RACKETEER ROUND-UP (Aywon, 1934) and released by the short-lived Beaumont Pictures as GUNNERS AND GUNS (Beaumont, 1935).

On the left is a 1935 theater ad for the Beaumont version.

Note the spelling error with Edmund Cobb being billed as 'Edwin'. And Frank Walker is big, burly Francis Walker.



(Courtesy of Les Adams)
 

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Left is a poster included in the pressbook for Horner's THE PHANTOM COWBOY (Aywon, 1935).

The pressbook also had the above glowing description of the film. Got a chuckle from the comment that "Nathan Hirsh, president of the Aywon company directed Robert J. Horner to spare no expense ...".



Robert J. Horner sound westerns, most
of which are among the lost / missing.

Titles listed in red are lost / missing westerns.
Special thanks to Les Adams for providing this filmography


Date Title Company Producer Director Writer(s) Star Leading
Lady
5/1/30 CHEYENNE KID, THE Cosmos/
West Coast
Robert J. Horner Jacques Jaccard Jacques Jaccard and Yakima Canutt Buffalo Bill, Jr. Joan Jaccard
7/1/30? SOUTH OF SONORA Cosmos/
West Coast
Dwain Esper and Gene Marcus (and Horner?) Robert J. Horner or Jacques Jaccard Jacques Jaccard and Yakima Canutt Buffalo Bill, Jr. Joan Jaccard
11/22/30 APACHE KID'S ESCAPE Cosmos/
West Coast
Robert J. Horner Robert J. Horner Robert J. Horner Jack Perrin Josephine Hill
2/15/31 TRAILS OF THE GOLDEN WEST Cosmos/
West Coast
Robert J. Horner Leander De Cordova L. V. Jefferson Buffalo Bill, Jr. Wanda Hawley
3/8/31 WILD WEST WHOOPEE Cosmos/
West Coast
Robert J. Horner Robert J. Horner Robert J. Horner Jack Perrin Josephine Hill
4/12/31 PUEBLO TERROR , THE Cosmos/
West Coast
Robert J. Horner Alvin J. Neitz (Alan James) L. V. Jefferson Buffalo Bill, Jr. Wanda Hawley
5/10/31 KID FROM ARIZONA, THE Cosmos/
West Coast
Robert J. Horner Robert J. Horner Robert Walker and Robert J. Horner Jack Perrin Josephine Hill
6/14/31 SHERIFF'S SECRET, THE Cosmos/
West Coast
Robert J. Horner James Hogan James Hogan Jack Perrin Dorothy Bauer
10/25/31 LARIATS AND SIX-SHOOTERS Cosmos/
West Coast
Robert J. Horner Alvin J. Neitz (Alan James) Carl Krusada Jack Perrin Ann Lee
2/1/32 RIDERS OF GOLDEN GULCH Cosmos/
West Coast
Robert J. Horner Clifford Smith Yakima Canutt Buffalo Bill, Jr. Mary Dunn
2/5/32 45 CALIBRE ECHO Cosmos/
West Coast
Robert J. Horner Bruce Mitchell Carl Krusada Jack Perrin Elinor Fair
12/2/32 TEX TAKES A HOLIDAY Argosy Productions Robert J. Horner Alvin J. Neitz (Alan James) Robert Walker and Alan James Wallace MacDonald Virginia Brown Faire
4/1/33 WHIRLWIND RIDER, THE American Pictures Robert J. Horner R. J. Renroh (alias for Robert J. Horner) Royal Hampton (is this Horner?) Buffalo Bill, Jr. Jeanne (Genee) Boutel
5/1/33 TRAILS OF ADVENTURE American Pictures Robert J. Horner Jay Wilsey (Buffalo Bill, Jr.) Donald Kent Buffalo Bill, Jr. Edna Aselin (Aslin)
2/1/34 BORDER GUNS Aywon Pictures
(A-1)
Nathan Hirsh & Robert J. Horner Robert J. Horner Oliver Drake Bill Cody Janet Morgan (Blanche Mehaffey)
4/1/34 BORDER MENACE, THE Aywon Pictures
(A-1)
Nathan Hirsh & Robert J. Horner Jack Nelson Robert J. Horner Bill Cody Miriam Rice
5/1/34 WESTERN RACKETEERS Aywon Pictures
(A-1)
Nathan Hirsh & Robert J. Horner Robert J. Horner James P. Hogan Bill Cody Edna Aselin (Aslin)
6/16/34 RACKETEER ROUND-UP (re-issued with added footage as GUNNERS AND GUNS) H & H Charles Hirsch & Robert Hoyt (Horner?) Robert Hoyt (Horner?) Eddie Davis and Ruth Runnell Edmund Cobb Edna Aselin (Aslin)
8/22/35 GUNNERS AND GUNS (RACKETEER ROUND-UP with added footage of Black King, the horse) Beaumont Pictures, Inc. Mitchell Leichter Jerry Calahan J. S. Burrows and Martin Eldridge Edwin Cobb (Edmund Cobb) Edna Aselin (Aslin)
2/1/35 PHANTOM COWBOY, THE Aywon Pictures
(A-1)
Nathan Hirsh & Robert J. Horner Robert J. Horner Carl Krusada Ted Wells Doris Brook
5/1/35 DEFYING THE LAW Aywon Pictures
(A-1)
Nathan Hirsh & Robert J. Horner Robert J. Horner Carl Krusada Ted Wells Edna Aslin
From Les Adams: it's possible that something called THE TIA JUANA KID with Pat Carlyle and Bobby Nelson (circa 1935, if it ever got released) came out of Horner's camp.


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