Willie Nelson’s publicist announced today that Willie will star in the movie version of ‘Bonanza,’ the television show that ran from 1959 – 1973, originally starring Lorne Greene as Ben Cartright, Pernell Roberts as Adam, Dan Blocker as Hoss and Michael Landon as Little Joe.
Nelson will play patriarch Ben Cartright, 3-time widower, who had a child from each of his three wives. Shooter Jennings will play Adam, Woody Harrelson will play Hoss and Owen Wilson stars as Little Joe.
In the movie, Pa Cartright is upset that his sons continue to live at home and refuse to move out and get their own places. He longs for the day when he can run away to Texas with his Mexican girlfriend Rosalita, played by Selma Hayek.
Ben and Rosalita hatch a plan to have a large party at the Ponderosa and invite beautiful women from all over Nevada, in the hopes that his boys will finally meet someone and move out. Ben even invites some handsome young cowboys, in the event that any of his sons may be secretly frequently fond of handsome young cowboys.
The party is in full swing, and Rusty Spurs and his Cactus Cowboys (played by Johnny Bush and his band) play music while the guests dance, when a young man runs into the ranch house and yells out that horse thieves have stolen all the horses.
As it turns out, Ben Cartright’s nemisis, El Guapo, played by Paul English, and his no-good sons Juanito and Jorgito, played by Sean Penn and Mickey Raphael, have taken off with the Cartright herd and all the horses of their wealthy guests.
Ben and the boys call in favors of local outlaws ’Los Machachos,’ played by the Fryed Brothers, who help them find the horses and bring the Guapo brothers to justice. There are a few plot twists in the end, involving a pet monkey and a runaway stagecoach that adds to the film’s excitement.
Filming starts later this summer at Willie Nelson’s western movie set town of Luck, Texas. Willie will record the soundtrack, which will include Willie’s recording of the beautiful Bonanza theme song, sung in the video here by Lorne Greene.
**** APRIL FOOL’S*****