Born Harry Albershart in Mishawaka, Indiana, on September 22, 1909, as a youth Allan 'Rocky' Lane often spent summers in at his uncle's ranch in New Mexico where he developed an affinity for horses. As he matured, he briefly attended Notre Dame, playing football for the school. He drifted away from his studies and had been a photographer, model, and stage actor by the time he was 20 years old. In 1929, the handsome Lane was spotted by Fox Film Corporation (later 20th Century Fox) talent scouts and was signed to a contract. His first film role for Fox was as a romantic lead opposite June Collyer in the 1929 release Not Quite Decent, which is now a lost film. Lane made several other films at Fox but then jumped ship to Warner Bros. However, while at Warner Bros. his career floundered, and after a number of bit parts he left films in the early 1930s to play football for a fledgling team in Cincinnati, Ohio. By 1936, Lane returned to films and to 20th Century Fox, taking supporting roles in the drama Laughing at Trouble and the Shirley Temple vehicle Stowaway. After several more supporting roles at Fox, Lane longed for a starring role; therefore, he took the lead in a Republic Pictures short feature titled The Duke Comes Back (1937; with Heather Angel).

Allan Rocky Lane and Black JackAllan Rocky LaneAllan Rocky Lane

LEFT: Lane with his horse Black Jack. CENTER: Late 1940s Republic photo. RIGHT: Late 1930s RKO still

Although Allan Lane is primarily known as a western actor, he appeared in only a handful of westerns until the 1940s. After stints at Fox and Warner Bros., Lane did a number of films at RKO in the late 1930s, often appearing in crime dramas. But as his career had gone south in the early 1930s, Lane's career again began to slide badly. He then went to Republic and stayed there for the remainder of his film career. Lane's personal life proved to be as tumultuous as his film career. He was married twice, but neither marriage lasted long. His marriage to first wife Gladys survived for a few years. He married his second wife, actress Sheila Ryan, after a brief courtship in October 1945 but the union dissolved just weeks later. (Ryan went on to marry another western actor, Pat Buttram, in 1951).

the films of allan 'rocky' lane

Laughing at Trouble (1936)

Allan Rocky Lane and Jane Darwell

With Jane Darwell in the Fox drama Laughing at Trouble

Sing and Be Happy (1937)

Allan Rocky Lane, Leah Ray, Dixie Dunbar, and Tony Martin

With Leah Ray, Dixie Dunbar, and Tony Martin in the Fox comedy Sing and Be Happy

Maid's Night Out (1938)

Allan Rocky Lane, George Irving, and Solly WardAllan Rocky Lane, Frank Thomas, and Solly Ward

From the RKO romantic comedy Maid's Night Out. LEFT: With George Irving and Solly Ward. RIGHT: With Frank Thomas and Solly Ward

Twelve Crowded Hours (1939)

John Arledge and Allan Rocky Lane

With John Arledge in the early film noir thriller Twelve Crowded Hours, released by RKO

They Made Her a Spy (1939)

Sally Eilers and Allan Rocky LaneSally Eilers and Allan Rocky Lane

With Sally Eilers in another RKO early film noir thriller They Made Her a Spy

Sheriff of Sundown (1944)

Twinkle Watts, Allan Rocky Lane, and Linda Stiring

With Twinkle Watts and Linda Stirling in the Republic programmer Sheriff of Sundown

The Tiger Woman (1944)

Allan Rocky Lane and Linda StirlingAllan Rocky Lane, LeRoy Mason, and Linda Stirling

From the campy Republic 12-chapter serial The Tiger Woman. LEFT: With Linda Stirling in the title role. RIGHT: With LeRoy Mason and Linda Stirling

Gay Blades (1946)

Jean Rogers and Allan Lane

With Jean Rogers in the Republic comedy Gay Blades

Santa Fe Uprising (1946)

Allan Rocky Lane and Martha Wentworth

With character actress Martha Wentworth in Republic's 'Red Ryder' western series Santa Fe Uprising, Lane's first outing as hero Red Ryder. Previously, Bill Elliot and Don 'Red' Barry portrayed Red Ryder onscreen, and later Jim Bannon replaced Allan Lane as the western hero. In the 1950s, Lane starred in the TV series Red Ryder

The Rustlers of Devil's Canyon (1947)

Tom London, Peggy Stewart, Allan Rocky Lane, Robert Blake, Emmett Lynn, and Pierce Lyden

From the Red Ryder feature The Rustlers of Devil's Canyon with Tom London, Peggy Stewart, Robert Blake, Emmett Lynn, and Pierce Lyden

The Wild Frontier (1947)

Jack Holt and Allan Rocky Lane

With Jack Holt in the Republic western The Wild Frontier

Navajo Trail Raiders (1949)

Allan Rocky Lane

From the Republic western Navajo Trail Raiders

Frisco Tornado (1950)

Martha Hyer and Allan Rocky Lane

With Martha Hyer in the Republic western Frisco Tornado

Savage Frontier (1953)

Allan Rocky Lane, Kenneth MacDonald, and William Henry

Lane and Kenneth MacDonald tend to a dying William Henry in the western Savage Frontier, one of Lane's final films for Republic

El Paso Stampede (1953)

Edward Clark and Allan Rocky Lane

Lane gets fed up with Edward Clark in Republic's El Paso Stampede, the last of the Rocky Lane westerns

later years

By most accounts, Allan Lane was difficult on the set and disliked by many of his co-stars. After the release of El Paso Stampede in 1953, Republic pulled the plug on Lane's contract and career since low-budget western features were being replaced by western television series. After a three-year hiatus, Lane returned to the screen, this time on television in the syndicated series Red Ryder. Unfortunately, the series was canceled at the end of the first season after a total of 39 episodes were shot. Lane worked little until 1960, when he was cast as the voice of the horse 'Mister Ed' on the Studebaker-sponsored TV series Mister Ed (1961-1966). The long-running series was canceled by CBS in 1966, and afterward Lane retired from acting. After a battle with cancer, Allan Lane passed away on October 27, 1973, at the age of 64. He left no immediate survivors.

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Posse from Hell (1961) with Audie Murphy, John Saxon, Lee Van Cleef, and Vic Morrow
Hell Bent for Leather (1960) with Audie Murphy, Stephen McNally, and Felicia Farr
The Saga of Hemp Brown (1958) with Beverly Garland, Rory Calhoun, Russell Johnson, Yvette Vickers, and John Larch
El Paso Stampede (1953) with Phyllis Coates and Eddy Waller
Bandits of the West (1953) with Cathy Downs and Eddy Waller
Savage Frontier (1953) with Eddy Waller
Marshal of Cedar Rock (1953) with Phyllis Coates, Robert Shayne, and Eddy Waller
Desperadoes' Outpost (1952) with Myron Healey, Lyle Talbot, and Eddy Waller
Leadville Gunslinger (1952) with Grant Withers and Eddy Waller
Captive of Billy the Kid (1952) with Grant Withers, Penny Edwards, and Clayton Moore
Desert of Lost Men (1951) with Mary Ellen Kay
Fort Dodge Stampede (1951) with Chubby Johnson and Mary Ellen Kay
Wells Fargo Gunmaster (1951) with Chubby Johnson and Mary Ellen Kay
Night Riders of Montana (1951) with Chubby Johnson, Claudia Barrett, and Myron Healey
Rough Riders of Durango (1951) with Denver Pyle
Rustlers on Horseback (1950) with George Nader, Claudia Barrett, and Eddy Waller
Frisco Tornado (1950) with Martha Hyer and Eddy Waller
Trail of Robin Hood (1950) with Roy Rogers, Penny Edwards, Rex Allen, Monte Hale, Tom Tyler, Ray 'Crash' Corrigan, Kermit Maynard, and Jack Holt
Vigilante Hideout (1950) with Eddy Waller
Salt Lake Raiders (1950) with with Martha Hyer, Byron Foulger, Myron Healey, and Eddy Waller
Code of the Silver Sage (1950) with Kenne Duncan and Eddy Waller
Gunmen of Abilene (1950) with Eddy Waller
Powder River Rustlers (1949) with Eddy Waller
Navajo Trail Raiders (1949) with Eddy Waller
Bandit King of Texas (1949) with Eddy Waller
The Wyoming Bandit (1949) with Eddy Waller
Frontier Marshal (1949) with Gail Davis, Clayton Moore, and Eddy Waller
Death Valley Gunfighter (1949) with Gail Davis and Eddy Waller
Sheriff of Wichita (1949) with Clayton Moore and Eddy Waller
Renegades of Sonora (1948) with Eddy Waller
Sundown in Santa Fe (1948) with Eddy Waller
The Denver Kid (1948) with Hank Patterson and Eddy Waller
Desperadoes of Dodge City (1948) with Eddy Waller
Marshal of Amarillo (1948) with Denver Pyle, Clayton Moore, and Eddy Waller
Carson City Raiders (1948) with Eddy Waller
The Bold Frontiersman (1948) with Eddy Waller
Oklahoma Badlands (1948) with Hank Patterson and Eddy Waller
Bandits of Dark Canyon (1947) with Bob Steele and Eddy Waller
The Wild Frontier (1947) with Eddy Waller
Marshal of Cripple Creek (1947) with Robert Blake
The Rustlers of Devil's Canyon (1947) with Robert Blake
Oregon Trail Scouts (1947) with Robert Blake
Homesteaders of Paradise Valley (1947) with Robert Blake
Vigilantes of Boomtown (1947) with Robert Blake
Gay Blades (1946) with Jean Rogers and Frank Albertson
Stagecoach to Denver (1946) with Robert Blake
Santa Fe Uprising (1946) with Robert Blake
Night Train to Memphis (1946) with Roy Acuff and Adele Mara
A Guy Could Change (1946) with Jane Frazee, Gerald Mohr, Adele Mara, Robert Blake, and Twinkle Watts
Trail of Kit Carson (1945) with Kenne Duncan and Twinkle Watts
Corpus Christi Bandits (1945) with Kenne Duncan and Twinkle Watts
The Topeka Terror (1945) with Linda Stirling and Twinkle Watts
Sheriff of Sundown (1944) with Linda Stirling, Duncan Renaldo, Kenne Duncan, Max Terhune, and Twinkle Watts
Stagecoach to Monterey (1944) with Kenne Duncan and Twinkle Watts
Silver City Kid (1944) with Peggy Stewart, Glenn Strange, and Twinkle Watts
The Tiger Woman (1944) with Linda Stirling, Duncan Renaldo, and Kenne Duncan
Call of the South Seas (1944) with Duncan Renaldo and Adele Mara
The Dancing Masters (1943) with Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, and Margaret Dumont
Daredevils of the West (1943)
King of the Mounties (1942) a Republic Pictures 12-chapter serial
All American Co-Ed (1941) with Frances Langford and Harry Langdon
King of the Royal Mounted (1940) a Republic Pictures 12-chapter serial
Grand Ole Opry (1940)
Conspiracy (1939)
The Spellbinder (1939) with Lee Tracy
Panama Lady (1939) with Lucille Ball and Evelyn Brent
They Made Her a Spy (1939) with Sally Eilers
Twelve Crowded Hours (1939) with Lucille Ball and Richard Dix
Pacific Liner (1938) with Chester Morris, Wendy Barrie, and Victor McLaglen
Law West of Tombstone (1938) with Tim Holt, Evelyn Brent, and Harry Carey
Fugitives for a Night (1938) with Frank Albertson
Crime Ring (1938)
Having Wonderful Time (1938) with Ginger Rogers, Eve Arden, Lucille Ball, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., and Grady Sutton
This Marriage Business (1938) with Cecil Kellaway and Jack Carson
Maid's Night Out (1938) with Joan Fontaine, Cecil Kellaway, Hedda Hopper, and Billy Gilbert
Night Spot (1938) with Cecil Kellaway and Jack Carson
The Duke Comes Back (1937) with Heather Angel
Sing and Be Happy (1937) with Joan Davis and Tony Martin
Big Business (1937) with Spring Byington
Fifty Races to Town (1937) with Don Ameche and Ann Sothern
Charlie Chan at the Olympics (1937) with Warner Oland, Katherine DeMille, and Keye Luke
Stowaway (1936) with Shirley Temple, Alice Faye, and Robert Young
Laughing at Trouble (1936) with Jane Darwell and Margaret Hamilton
Heavens! My Husband (1932) with Andy Clyde
War Mamas (1931) with Thelma Todd and Zasu Pitts
Honor of the Family (1931) with Bebe Daniels and Alan Mowbray
Love in the Rough (1930) with Robert Montgomery
The Forward Pass (1929) with Loretta Young and Douglas Fairbanks Jr.
Knights Out (1929)
Not Quite Decent (1929) with June Collyer

Mister Ed, 1961-1966 syndicated and later CBS TV series. Lane provided the voice for Mister Ed
Red Ryder, 1956-1957 TV series. Lane portrayed Red Ryder

Cheyenne, episode Massacre at Gunsight Pass, originally aired May 1, 1961
Gunsmoke, episode Long Hours, Short Pay, originally aired April 29, 1961
Bonanza, episode The Blood Line, originally aired December 31, 1960
Gunsmoke, episode The Badge, originally aired November 12, 1960
Lawman, episode The Payment, originally aired May 8, 1960
Bronco, episode Death of an Outlaw, originally aired March 8, 1960
Colt .45, episode Arizona Anderson, originally aired February 14, 1960
Tales of Wells Fargo, episode The Reward, originally aired April 21, 1958
Wagon Train, episode The Daniel Barrister Story, originally aired April 16, 1958
Alfred Hitchcock Presents, episode Lamb to the Slaughter, originally aired April 13, 1958
Gunsmoke, episode Texas Cowboys, originally aired April 5, 1958
Mike Hammer, episode Husbands Are Bad Luck, originally aired 1957

allan rocky lane film now showing

Watch Allan Lane's 1946 western Stagecoach to Denver

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