Thursday, November 9, 2023

Little Known Spaghetti Western Actors ~ J. L. Bayonas

[These daily posts will cover little known actors or people that have appeared in more recent films and TV series. Various degrees of information that I was able to find will be given and anything that you can add would be appreciated.]

J. L. Bayonas did it all. He was a Spanish producer, director, assistant director, writer, cameraman, editor and actor. born José Luis de las Bayonas 1933 in Madrid Spain, during the Spanish civil war, Bayonas spent his childhood studying music at conservatoriums in Madrid and Barcelona, went to art school in Madrid and at the age of 14 was painting portraits for American GI’s to support his studies, got a job in the art department of a film studio and that was the start of his film career at a time when Spain was the prized location  for American westerns and epic co-productions.   Did crew work at first, from Runner to 1st Assistant Director and 2nd Unit Director and later as a screenwriter.  He worked on over 20 feature films and wrote or co-wrote the screenplays for five, including “Mission Lisboa”, “Cauldron of Blood” with Boris Karloff, “Madigan’s Million” with Dustin Hoffman, worked with directors Orson Welles, Ken Annekin, Sergio Leone and Richard Rush.

In the early 1970s Hector Crawford invited Bayonas to Australia to write for “Homicide”, a new TV series, where he introduced comedy into the show.  Luis spent the next 25 years writing for many iconic Australian television series (“A Country Practice”, “Division 4”, “Bellamy”, “Matlock Police”, “The Flying Doctors”, “Special Squad”, “GP”, amongst others), two telemovies and the teleplay “A Woman in the House”.   

In the mid-90s Bayonas took up painting again, had his first solo exhibition in the Bathurst Regional Art Gallery followed by seven solo exhibitions in Sydney and Melbourne.  In 2004 he bought a professional camera and decided to make his own movie, with the help of a community: “Dancing Cows”, his first feature film as director-writer-producer-editor-camera operator. Completed in 2011 and premiered and screened in local theatres, "Dancing Cows" sold out every time.

“Dancing Cows” was followed by “Adios”, another feature film starring John Waters, with Luis writing, directing, producing and editing.  

When asked whether he is a filmmaker who paints or a painter who makes movies, Bayonas says: “Who cares, I do what I do because I need to do it and that’s all there is to it.”

J.L.’s life partner was screenwriter Lynn Bayonas (Lynette Margaret Bower) [1943-2010]. She took his name, but they never married. They had a son painter and artist Daniel Bayonas.

BAYONAS, J.L. (aka Jose Luis Baxonas, Jose Luis G. Bayonas, José L. Bayonas, José Luis Bayonas, Luis Bayonas, José de la Bayonas) (José Luis de las Bayonas) [1933, Madrid, Madrid, Spain – 7/6/2023, Daylesford, Victoria, Australia] – producer, director, assistant director, writer, cameraman, film editor, actor, artist, musician (piano), father of artist Daniel Bayonas with producer, writer Lynn Bayonas (Lynette Margaret Bower) [1943-2010].

The Tall Women – 1966 [also assistant director]

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