Thursday, June 30, 2011

Remembering Al Mulock

Al Mulock was a stage and film actor who was born in Toronto, Canada on June 30, 1926. His real name wass Alfred Mulock Rogers and he was a descendent of William Mulock, the former Postmaster General of Canada. His parents were Adele Cawthra Mulock and Alfred Rogers of Toronto, Canada. He was married at one time to actress Catharine Ellison. They had no children. The couple purchased the Red Barn Theater in Toronto in 1949. Sometime in the 1950s Catharine and Al divorced and Al moved to England where he became active in British television and film. He married actress Steffi Henderson [1925-1967]. According to Mickey Knox’s book, The Good, the Bad, and the Dolce Vita: The Adventures of an Actor in Hollywood, Paris, and Rome. According to Knox, Al was a drug addict and committed suicide in Gaudix, sometime during the shooting of the opening scenes of "Once Upon a Time in the West." Knox said Al couldn’t get a fix and jumped from his hotel window. Mickey and production manager Claudio Mancini saw him fall past their window. Mancini put Al in his car and drove him to a local hospital where he died from injuries sustained in the fall. Sergio Leone was said to have told Mancini to make sure he "got the costume" back for the shooting of the film as Al apparently jumped wearing his duster and gear. Another possibility was he was still distraught over his wife Steffi's death the year before. Al appeared in five Euro-westerns from an early appearance in "The Sheriff of Fractured Jaw" in 1959 to "Once Upon a Time in the West" (1968). He also appeared in "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly" (1966), "Hellbenders" and "Day of Anger" (both 1967). Today we remember Al Mulock on what would have been his 85th birthday.


  1. Thanks for the info Tom... Al was simply one of the classic faces of the Italian western.
    What little information I could find on him never mentioned his drug habit... but that makes sense, as I remember being shocked when I learned that he was only in his early 40's when he died.

  2. I found alot of the information on Al from a Canadian genealogy site and caught the woman who runs it on-line. I asked her if she knew where Al was buried but she had no records. So he's most likely buried in Almeria or England. Since no one's mentioned attending his funeral while the filming was going on I'm guessing he's buried in England. Tom Betts

  3. Al Mulock became addicted to drugs after he lost his wife to cervical cancer. While filming, "Once Upon A Time In The West" in 1968 for Sergio Leone, Al had asked Sergio for some money but he refused knowing that Al would only spend it on drugs. Al Mulock then decided that if he couldn't get money for his drug habit, then life just wasn't worth living anymore. He simply tied a bedsheet around his ankles and then his neck and jumped off the roof of his hotel. Sadly, Sergio Leone and the screenwriter for the film both stayed at the same hotel and they saw Al's body fly right past their window. Sources later claim that Sergio Leone was so concerned about the film that he demanded that the crew give him Al's costume. He reportedly said, "I don't care who wears the costume now, just get me the costume! We need that costume!" Others claim that the ambulance that took Al's body away hit a ditch on its way to the hospital and Al died from a torn muscle caused by his somewhat attempted suicide. But if you want MY opinion, I say Al Mulock died on impact. Because I can't see anybody, especially a doped up Canadian Spaghetti Western actor, surviving a fall like that. He was only 41 years old still. Sadly, he wasn't the only actor from the cast to commit suicide. Frank Wolff would follow three years later on December 13, 1971 at the age of 43 when he slashed his own throat due to the embarrassment of having an affair with Mario Brega's Greek wife. Great film, sad story.