Rod Cameron's rugged good looks and towering size made him an ideal model of a western movie hero.
Cameron made more than 140 movies, most of them second-feature westerns. He talked about movie making as if it were just a better-paying version of the business he quit to become an actor—selling fertilizer.
"I never had any great artistic integrity about the pictures I made," he said in a 1979 interview. "It was a job and I did what I was told."
Cameron came to Los Angeles in the 1930s to drive tunnels for the Metropolitan Water District.
Later he went into the fertilizer business as a salesman, but the firm failed and Cameron found work as a stunt man and a double for cowboy star Buck Jones. He also doubled for Fred MacMurray.
Some of his movies were "Northwest Mounted Police," "The Kansan," "Gung Ho!," "Panhandle," "Dakota Gal," "The Gun Hawk" and "The Bounty Killer." He also performed in Saturday afternoon movie serials and in several television series.
"The most exciting thing I did in my whole career," he once said, "was a screen test with Ingrid Bergman for 'For Whom the Bell Tolls.' She was just remarkable."
Gary Cooper got the part.