Under Western Stars is a 1938 American Western film directed by Joseph Kane and starring Roy Rogers, Smiley Burnette, Carol Hughes, and the Maple City Four. Written by Dorrell McGowan, Stuart E. McGowan, and Betty Burbridge, the film is about a populist singing cowboy who decides to run for Congress in order to seek federal assistance to help small ranchers regain their water rights during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s. His campaign comes into conflict with greedy water company executives.
Under Western Stars was the first starring role for Rogers, made under contract to Republic Pictures. It was filmed on location in the Alabama Hills of Lone Pine, California. The film’s song “Dust”, written by Johnny Marvin, was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Song. In 2009, Under Western Stars was selected for the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress for being “culturally, historically or aesthetically” significant and will be preserved for all time.
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