Lucille Ball Once Revealed She Always Wanted to Work with a John Wayne Frequent Collaborator But Never Got the Chance

by Madison Miller

Over the course of her career, Lucille Ball got the opportunity to work with some absolutely iconic Hollywood figures.

After all, Lucille Ball herself was one of the most influential figures in the entertainment world at the time. With her shows like “I Love Lucy,” “The Lucy Show,” “Here’s Lucy,” as well as her work as the owner of Desilu Studious, Ball was a powerhouse figure.

Unfortunately, there’s one person Ball always wanted to work with but never quite got the chance.

Lucille Ball and John Ford

During an older interview on “The Dick Cavett Show” from 1970, Lucille Ball revealed that she was deeply saddened by the death of John Ford. He was a popular director at the time that was specifically known for his Westerns. He was also known because he had a close relationship, working and personal, with renowned actor John Wayne.

Some of Ford’s most popular work includes “Stagecoach,” “The Searchers,” and “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance.”

“I wanted to work with him … We almost made it,” Lucille Ball said during the interview. She also shared that she always wanted to work with Cecil B. DeMille. She was supposed to be in the 1952 film, “The Greatest Show on Earth.” However, she got pregnant with Lucie and the part went to Gloria Graham instead.

It makes sense that Lucille Ball would want to work with John Ford. This is because Lucille Ball and John Wayne, although polar opposites in many ways, were good friends throughout their careers. The two led very different careers, one as the Queen of Comedy and the other as one of the most popular Western stars ever.

Although he was a pretty serious, no comedy actor, John Wayne even made a guest appearance in “I Love Lucy.” He would later appear in an episode of “The Lucy Show” as well.

Lucille Ball and Beloved Costar Vivian Vance

As for iconic working relationships, there is very few that measure up to Vivian Vance and Lucille Ball. The two worked together for years on a number of Lucille’s different projects.

On the screen, they were a hilarious power-duo that fans could never get enough of. Even off the screen, the two were incredibly close throughout their lives.

Lucie Arnaz, the daughter of Lucille Ball, once spoke about the duo’s iconic friendship during a KMC Chat. “I grew up with her around a lot. My mother and Vivian were really good friends in real life. They really were good friends. Like sisters good friends, tell each other exactly what’s what good friends. And they adored one another. Vivian was one of the funniest people on the planet – truly, truly funny. And when she would get together with my mother, it was lovely,” Arnaz said during the video.

When Ball lost Vance to cancer in 1979, she was absolutely devastated. It was like losing a sister for Ball.

“She could talk to Mom like nobody else, and I don’t think my mother could confide in many people the way she would with Viv.”