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The 'brains' and 'action' heavies who had meaty roles and lots of dialog ... and the players who were fathers, ranch owners, lawman, mayors, judges, lawyers, storekeepers, newspaper editors, wardens, etc.

(From Old Corral collection)

Above is George J. Lewis as "Don Alejandro de la Vega", the father of the masked hero in the ZORRO TV show.

(Courtesy of Minard Coons)

Above - a smiling George J. Lewis at a 1970s film convention.
George J. Lewis

1903 or 1904 - 1995

George J. Lewis is a very familiar face to fans of the western and serial. Born in Mexico, his silent and sound screen credits number in the hundreds, and his Hollywood film work began in the 1920s and continued through the early 1960s. While he often portrayed bad guys, he occasionally had the lead/hero role, such as in THE WOLF DOG (Mascot, 1933) and ZORRO'S BLACK WHIP (Republic, 1944) cliffhangers. And he shows up in some A grade films and even does comedy roles - one of my favorite George J. Lewis roles is his portrayal of the drunken "Chief Iron Shirt" in John Wayne's THE COMANCHEROS (20th Century Fox, 1961).

Les Adams has Lewis identified in about 200 sound era films, of which 82 are westerns and 25 are serials. Lewis worked in about 35 films at Republic Pictures from 1936-1951, and roughly half of those appearances were in chapterplays. As with many of the B western supporting actors, Lewis also did some shorts including the Three Stooges.

He turned up on the TV screen in the 1950s and 1960s in shows like ANNIE OAKLEY, RIN-TIN-TIN, WILD BILL HICKOK, SGT PRESTON, WYATT EARP, GENE AUTRY, RANGE RIDER, ROY ROGERS, and more. His best remembered small screen role is portraying the father of ZORRO on the Walt Disney TV show of the same name which starred Guy Williams. Others may recall Lewis as "Collins", the double crossing scout who leads John Reid and The Texas Rangers into ambush in "Enter the Lone Ranger", the first episode of the Clayton Moore LONE RANGER television program.

You may want to go to the In Search Of .. page on the Old Corral, and check the California Death Index. There you will find a record for George Joseph Lewis, born 12/10/1903 in Mexico, and he passed away on 12/8/1995. There is a corresponding record in the Social Security Death Index (SSDI).

  Although some of the data is incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDB) has information on George J. Lewis:

Daniel Neyer's "The Files of Jerry Blake" serial website has a webpage on George J. Lewis' work in serials:

The website has info on the Zorro TV series which starred Guy Williams and featured George J. Lewis as Zorro's father, Don Alejandro de la Vega:

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above are the quartet of no-goodniks from the Allan Lane serial DAREDEVILS OF THE WEST (Republic, 1943). From left to right are William Haade, Robert Frazer, Ted Adams and George J. Lewis. Frazer is the brains heavy and Adams is his crooked attorney. Haade and Lewis report to them.

(From Old Corral collection)

Above from L-to-R: Helen Deverell looks on as George J. Lewis has the drop on Three Mesquiteers hero Tom Tyler in a lobby card from THE BLOCKED TRAIL (Republic, 1943).

(From Old Corral collection)

Above from L-to-R are Smiley Burnette, Bud Geary, star Bob Livingston, George J. Lewis and Leander de Cordova in a lobby card from THE LARAMIE TRAIL (Republic, 1944).

(From Old Corral collection)

Above are George J. Lewis (without his customary moustache) and heroine Linda Stirling in the serial, ZORRO'S BLACK WHIP (Republic, 1944).

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