In a career that spanned more than half a century, Richard Arlen made 286 motion pictures portraying everything from football hero to gunslinger to air ace.
It was an aerial epic, William Wellman's "Wings," that brought Arlen stardom. He played a dashing young American pursuit pilot in the 1927 film about World War I, considered one of the last great silent films.
In real life, although an American, Arlen had slipped across the border to Canada to join the Canadian Flying Corps during the war, becoming an expert pilot. He served in England but never saw combat. He once remarked that making the flying sequences in "Wings" was more dangerous than anything the experienced as a military pilot.