William S. Hart's Farewell to the Screen
Introduction to Astor Pictures Corp.'s 1939 Re-release of "Tumbleweeds"
Filmed on location at his Horseshoe Ranch in Newhall-Santa Clarita
(William S. Hart Park & Museum)
©1939 William S. Hart Co.
THE THRILL OF IT ALL
(End of Monologue)
"My friends, I love the art of making motion pictures. It is as the breath of life to me. But through those harzardous feats of horsemanship that I love so well to do for you,
I received many major injuries. That, coupled with the added years of life, preclude my again doing those things that I so gloried in doing. The rush of the wind that cuts your face,
the pounding hoofs of the pursuing posse, out there in front a fallen tree trunk that spans a yawning canyon, the old animal under you that takes it in the same low ground-eating gallop,
the harmless shots of the baffled ones that remain behind, and then, the clouds of dust, through which come the faint voice of the director (cupping hand to mouth)
'Okay, Bill, okay, glad you made it, great stuff, Bill, great stuff, and say, Bill, give ol' Fritz a pat on the nose for me, will ya?' Oh, the thrill of it all.
You do give old Fritz a pat on the nose, and as your arm encircles his neck, the cloud of dust is no longer a cloud of dust but a beautiful golden haze, through which
appears a long phantom herd of trailing cattle, at their head, a pinto pony (sob) a pinto pony with an empty saddle, and then a low, loved whinny, the whinny
of a horse so fine that nothing seems to live between it and silence saying, 'Say Boss, what you riding back there with the drag fer, why don't you come on here
and ride point with me? Can't you see, Boss, can't you see? The saddle is empty. The boys up ahead are calling. They're waiting for you and me to help drive this
last great round-up into eternity.' Adios Amigos, God bless you all, each and every one."