Actor-turned director took centre stage at the town's celebrations wearing the same poncho which he made famous as The Man with No Name in spaghetti Westerns. Carmel-By-The-Sea just turned 100 this week meaning the beautiful ocean-side city in California is only 14 years older than the Hollywood star that helped to make it famous.
One-time mayor Clint Eastwood turned out to help celebrate its centennial on Saturday, a few days ahead of its official October 31 incorporation date.
The legendary 86-year-old actor-turned-director dressed as one of his most famous characters, The Man With No Name, from the trilogy of spaghetti Westerns directed by Sergio Leone that kicked off with A Fistful of Dollars in 1964. And he even wore the original poncho from the films as he climbed aboard the stagecoach to ride shotgun and lead the parade as Grand Marshal.
The veteran added to his Western look with a heavy grey shirt (possibly from High Plains Drifter), blue jeans, brown leather boots (from Rawhide) complete with spurs and the cowboy hat (from Unforgien) and of course the Poncho from the Dollar trilogy.
All he was missing from the No Name part was the cigar that he continually chewed throughout the movies. Clint once lived in Carmel and was elected mayor, with a whopping 72.5 per cent majority, when he stood in 1986 on a ticket of reducing bureaucracy. During his tenure he made it easier to build or to renovate property, saved the land around the Mission Ranch which was earmarked for 80 condominiums and opened the library annex dedicated for children's use, according to his website.
Clint served for two years before returning to his film career.
Don’t Pave Main Street (VHS, 1994) This OOP video is well worth searching out. It is a fascinating feature length documentary narrated by Clint and includes a special appearance by Carmel Resident Doris Day. Through personal interviews and historic photographs, you will come to know the story of Carmel, the jewel of the California Coast. It’s the place that also inspired Robert Louis Stevenson to write Treasure Island. Produced by Julian Ludwig and released by Carmel Heritage – it runs for 113 minutes. It can still be found occasionally on outlets such as Ebay and Amazon. This has never had a DVD or Blu-ray release.