Title Image - Quotes by Author John Wayne

Welcome to our collection of quotes by John Wayne. We hope you enjoy pondering them and please share widely.

Wikipedia Summary for John Wayne

Marion Robert Morrison (May 26, 1907 – June 11, 1979), known professionally as John Wayne and nicknamed Duke, was an American actor and filmmaker who became a popular icon through his starring roles in films made during Hollywood’s Golden Age, especially in Western and war movies. His career flourished from the silent era of the 1920s through the American New Wave, as he appeared in a total of 179 film and television productions. He was among the top box office draws for three decades, and he appeared with many other important Hollywood stars of his era. In 1999, the American Film Institute selected Wayne as one of the greatest male stars of classic American cinema.

Wayne was born in Winterset, Iowa, but grew up in Southern California. He lost a football scholarship to the University of Southern California as a result of a bodysurfing accident, and began working for the Fox Film Corporation. He appeared mostly in small parts, but his first leading role came in Raoul Walsh's Western The Big Trail (1930), an early widescreen film epic which was a box-office failure. He played leading roles in numerous B movies during the 1930s, most of them also Westerns, without becoming a major name. It was John Ford's Stagecoach (1939) that made Wayne a mainstream star, and he starred in 142 motion pictures altogether. According to one biographer, "John Wayne personified for millions the nation's frontier heritage."Wayne's other roles in Westerns include a cattleman driving his herd on the Chisholm Trail in Red River (1948), a Civil War veteran whose niece is abducted by a tribe of Comanches in The Searchers (1956), a troubled rancher competing with a lawyer (James Stewart) for a woman's hand in The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962), and a cantankerous one-eyed marshal in True Grit (1969), for which he received the Academy Award for Best Actor. He is also remembered for his roles in The Quiet Man (1952), Rio Bravo (1959) with Dean Martin, and The Longest Day (1962). In his final screen performance, he starred as an aging gunfighter battling cancer in The Shootist (1976). He made his last public appearance at the Academy Awards ceremony on April 9, 1979 before succumbing to stomach cancer two months later. He was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor of the United States.

I want to play a real man in all my films and I define manhood simply; men should be tough fair and courageous; never petty, never looking for a fight, but never backing down from one either.

--John Wayne

Life's tough but it's tougher if you're stupid.

--John Wayne

Never apologize and never explain-it's a sign of weakness.

--John Wayne

Life is tough pilgrim, it is even tougher if you're stupid.

--John Wayne

Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway.

--John Wayne

I merely try to act naturally. If I start acting phony on the screen, you start looking at me instead of feeling with me.

--John Wayne

The difference between acting and reacting is that in a bad picture, you see them acting all over the place. In a good picture, they react in a logical way to a situation they're in, so the audience can identify with the actors.

--John Wayne

The hyphenated American is ridiculous. But that's what we have to put up with. I think that any person that's in the United States is better off here than they would be where they came from.

--John Wayne

Slap some bacon on a biscuit and let's go! We're burnin' daylight!

--John Wayne

Let's say I hope that I appeal to the more carefree times in a person's life rather than to his reasoning adulthood. I'd just like to be an image that reminds someone of joy rather than of the problems of the world.

--John Wayne

We're burnin' daylight.

--John Wayne

We're burnin' daylight!

--John Wayne

You're short on ears and long on mouth.

--John Wayne


I play John Wayne in every part regardless of the character, and I've been doing okay, haven't I?

--John Wayne

Healthy, lusty sex is wonderful.

--John Wayne

Most men hate to shop. That's why the men's department is usually on the first floor of a department store, two inches from the door.

--John Wayne

You're going to think I'm being corny, but this is how I really feel: I hope my family and my friends will be able to say that I was an honest, kind and fairly decent man.

--John Wayne

Courage is being scared to death -- and saddling up anyway A goal, A love and A dream give you total control over your body and your life.

--John Wayne

I drink for comradeship, and when I drink for comradeship, I don't bother to keep count.

--John Wayne

Oscar and I have something in common. Oscar first came to Hollywood scene in 1928. So did I. We're both a little weather-beaten, but we're still here and plan to be around for a whole lot longer.

--John Wayne

Paul Newman would have been a much more important star if he hadn't always tried to be an anti-hero, to show the human feet of clay.

--John Wayne

We brought nothing into this world and it's certain we can carry nothing out.

--John Wayne

There's right and there's wrong. You got to do one or the other. You do the one and you're living. You do the other and you may be walking around, but you're dead as a beaver hat.

--John Wayne

Jesus Christ! I would crawl over the mountains of Beverly Hills on my hands and knees if I could do a movie with Doris Day!

--John Wayne

We built your fort. We will not have it used against us.

--John Wayne

My favorite four-letter words are 'hard work'.

--John Wayne

Give the American people a good cause, and there's nothing they can't lick.

--John Wayne

I figured I needed a gimmick, so I dreamed up this drawl, the squint and a way of moving meant to suggest that I wasn't looking for trouble but would just as soon throw a bottle at your head as not. I practiced in front of a mirror.

--John Wayne

Out here, due process is a bullet.

--John Wayne

I've always followed my father's advice: he told me, first to always keep my word and, second, to never insult anybody unintentionally. If I insult you, you can be goddamn sure I intend to. And, third, he told me not to go around looking for trouble.

--John Wayne

Life is getting up one more time than you've been knocked down.

--John Wayne

Life is tough, but if you are stupid, it's a lot tougher.

--John Wayne

Watergate is a sad and tragic incident in our history. They were wrong, dead wrong, those men at Watergate. Men abused power, but the system still works. Men abused money, but the system still works. Men lied and perjured themselves, but the system still .

--John Wayne

I never trust a man that doesn't drink.

--John Wayne

Very few of the so-called liberals are open-minded.... They shout you down and won't let you speak if you disagree with them.

--John Wayne

The West -- the very words go straight to that place of the heart where Americans feel the spirit of pride in their western heritage -- the triumph of personal courage over any obstacle, whether nature or man.

--John Wayne

Government has no wealth, and when a politician promises to give you something for nothing, he must first confiscate that wealth from you -- either by direct taxes, or by the cruelly indirect tax of inflation.

--John Wayne

I want to play a real man in all my films, and I define manhood simply:

men should be tough, fair, and courageous, never petty,

never looking for a fight, but never backing down from one either.

--John Wayne

Men forget everything; women remember everything.

--John Wayne

Screw ambiguity. Perversion and corruption masquerade as ambiguity. I don't trust ambiguity. John Wayne.

--John Wayne

Sometimes I wonder whose side God's on.

--John Wayne

Getting rid of a man without hurting his masculinity is a problem. Get out and I never want to see you again might sound like a challenge. If you want to get rid of a man, I suggest saying, I love you... I want to marry you... I want to have your children. Sometimes they leave skid marks.

--John Wayne

I won't be wronged. I won't be insulted. I won't be laid a-hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them.

--John Wayne

Well, there are some things a man just can't run away from.

--John Wayne

I don't want ever to appear in a film that would embarrass a viewer. A man can take his wife, mother, and his daughter to one of my movies and never be ashamed or embarrassed for going.

--John Wayne

I read someplace that I used to make B-pictures. Hell, they were a lot farther down the alphabet than that ... but not as far down as R and X. I think any man who makes an X-rated picture ought to be made to take his own daughter to see it.

--John Wayne

Any man who'd make an X-rated movie ought to have to take his daughter to see it.

--John Wayne

Life's hard. It's even harder when you're stupid.

--John Wayne

There's been no top authority saying what marijuana does to you. I really don't know that much about it. I tried it once but it didn't do anything to me.

--John Wayne

Republic. I like the sound of the word. It means people can live free, talk free, go or come, buy or sell, be drunk or sober, however they choose. Some words give you a feeling.

--John Wayne

I stick to simple themes. Love. Hate. No nuances. I stay away from psychoanalyst's couch scenes. Couches are good for one thing.

--John Wayne

My main object in making a motion picture is entertainment. If at the same time I can strike a blow for liberty, then I'll stick one in.

--John Wayne

If I depended on the critics' judgment and recognition, I'd never have gone into the motion-picture business.

--John Wayne

Westerns are closer to art than anything else in the motion picture business.

--John Wayne

There's right and there's wrong. Y'gotta do one or the other. Do the other and you may be walking around, but you're dead as a beaver hat.

--John Wayne

General MacArthur told me, You represent the American serviceman better than the American serviceman himself.

--John Wayne

The guy you see on the screen isn't really me. I'm Duke Morrison, and I never was and never will be a film personality like JOHN WAYNE . I know him well. I'm one of his closest students. I have to be. I made a living out of him.

--John Wayne

It's kind of a sad thing when a normal love of country makes you a super patriot. I do think we have a pretty wonderful country, and I thank God that He chose me to live here.

--John Wayne

I believe in white supremacy until the blacks are educated to a point of responsibility.

--John Wayne

If you can't be thankful for what you have, be thankful for what you have escaped.

--John Wayne

I'd like to know why well-educated idiots keep apologizing for lazy and complaining people who think the world owes them a living.

--John Wayne

When the road looks rough ahead, remember the 'Man upstairs'

and the word HOPE.

Hang onto both and 'tough it out'.

--John Wayne

That's why men need instant replays in sports. They've already forgotten what happened.

--John Wayne

Of course I know who you are. You're my girl. I love you.

--John Wayne

You don't have to fight to be brave. Millions of good, fine, decent folks show more bravery than heavyweight champs just by getting out of bed every morning, going out to do a good day's work and living the best life they know how against the law of odds.

--John Wayne

Life is tough, but it's tougher when you're stupid.

--John Wayne

Sure I wave the American flag. Do you know a better flag to wave? Sure I love my country with all her faults. I'm not ashamed of that, never have been, never will be.

--John Wayne

Nobody ever saw a cowboy on the psychiatrist's couch.

--John Wayne

Women have the right to work wherever they want, as long as they have the dinner ready when you get home.

--John Wayne

Male menopause is a lot more fun than female menopause. With female menopause you gain weight and get hot flashes. Male menopause ? you get to date young girls and drive motorcycles.

--John Wayne

Senator Joseph McCarthy was one of the greatest Americans who ever lived.

--John Wayne

My hope and prayer is that everyone know and love our country for what she really is and what she stands for.

--John Wayne

I believe in white supremacy until the blacks are educated to the point of responsibility. I don't believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people.

--John Wayne

A man deserves a second chance, but keep an eye on him.

--John Wayne

A man ought to do what he thinks is right.

--John Wayne

Cause even grown men need understanding.

--John Wayne

Republic. I like the sound of the word.

--John Wayne

It's getting to be ri-goddamn-diculous.

--John Wayne

You have to be a man before you can be a gentleman.

--John Wayne

I am an old-fashioned, honest-to-goodness, flag waving patriot.

--John Wayne

A long time ago, I made me a rule. I let people do what they want to do.

--John Wayne

Ahh, women! I never met one yet that was half as reliable as a horse!

--John Wayne

A friend of mine told me to shoot first and ask questions later. I was going to ask him why, but I had to shoot him.

--John Wayne

It rankles me when somebody tries to force somebody to do something.

--John Wayne

Sure I wave the American flag. Do you know a better flag to wave?

--John Wayne

I want to play a real man in all my films, and I define manhood simply: men should be tough, fair, and courageous, never petty, never looking for a fight, but never backing down from one either.

--John Wayne

I didn't vote for him, but he's my President, and I hope he does a good job.

--John Wayne

The reason there are so many stupid people is because it's illegal to kill them.

--John Wayne

I have tried to live my life so that my family would love me and my friends respect me. The others can do whatever the hell they please.

--John Wayne

All battles are fought by scared men who'd rather be some place else.

--John Wayne

When you stop fighting, that's death.

--John Wayne

A man's got to have a code, a creed to live by, no matter his job.

--John Wayne

True grit is making a decision and standing by it, doing what must be done.

--John Wayne

A man's got to do what a man's got to do.

--John Wayne

There's a lot of things great about life. But I thin tomorrow is the most important thing. It comes to us at midnight very clean. It's perfect when it arrives and it puts itself in our hands. It hopes we've learned something from yesterday.

--John Wayne

I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, and I won't be laid a hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them.

- J.B Books in The Shootist 1976, directed by Don Siegel.

--John Wayne

Quotes by John Wayne are featured in:


Courage Quotes
Funny Quotes
Man Quotes

Know a quote that we are missing? Please use our suggest a quote form below and let us know. Thank YOU for visiting -- we wish you a perfect day!