How Were Spaghetti Westerns Made?

Last night I watched two classic Sergio Leone films on TV (specifically, Fistful of Dollars and For a Few Dollars More). Anyway, I was wondering how they got actors like Clint Eastwood and Lee Van Cliff to interact with the Italian actors. I mean, those American actors don’t speak Italian, do they?

Admittedly, there isn’t a lot of dialogue in Sergio Leone’s westerns, but occasionally the characters DO interact.

What’s the story?

Afraid to fly? Hey, I’ve been there!

WAG here…the Italian actors spoke English?

Sorry, Wag, but the Italian actors spoke Italian. You need only watch their lips to realize that the movie was dubbed.

If you have the slightest doubt, check out the atrocious dubbing of the whiney kid in Fist Full of Dollars.

Kick me if you will, but I didn’t watch the English actors’ lips carefully enough to figure out what language they were speaking while being filmed.

Afraid to fly? Hey, I’ve been there!

The American actors spoke English, while the Italians spoke Italian. Most of it was shot MOS (without sound), so it was easy to go back and loop in the appropriate dialogue.

Well, one one guy played the five notes on the flute and another guy went “waah waah waah”.

Back off, man. I’m a scientist.

I didn’t mean my original response to sound like a smart-ass remark, but it did. My apologies.

Anyway, Sergio Leone speaks both languages, so he could direct all the actors. Admittedly, the dialogues were kept rather short, and the language barrier was probably why.

I wonder how long it will be before every conceivable question has been asked on this board.

Look what I dredged up:

With lots of sauce and plenty of garlic.