Rin Tin Tin
Rin Tin Tin (often billed as Rin-Tin-Tin in the 1920s and 1930s) was the name given to several related German Shepherd dogs featured in fictional stories on film, radio and television.
Full Name at Birth
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Rin Tin Tin (often billed as Rin-Tin-Tin in the 1920s and 1930s) was the name given to a dog adopted from a WWI battlefield that went on to star in twenty-three Hollywood films, gaining worldwide fame. The name was subsequently given to several related German Shepherd dogs featured in fictional stories on film, radio, and television.
1928 movie ad
5 Death and posthumous recognition
6 Successor Rin Tin Tins
9 Rin Tin Tin in popular culture
10 Early filmography
11 Rin Tin Tin Jr. filmography
12 Rin Tin Tin III filmography
14 External links
The first of the line (c. September 10, 1918 – August 10, 1932) was one of a litter of shell-shocked pups found by American serviceman Lee Duncan in a bombed-out dog kennel in Lorraine, then part of the German Empire, less than two months before the end of World War I. When Duncan found him on September 15, he was only 5 days old and nursing. The two pups from the litter that Duncan kept were named for finger puppets called Rintintin and Nénette that French children gave to the American soldiers as good luck charms. Duncan returned to the USA with them at war's end. Rin Tin Tin settled at his home in Los Angeles, California, though Nénette had earlier died. Rin Tin Tin was a dark sable color and had very dark eyes.
Nicknamed Rinty by his owner, the dog learned tricks and could leap great heights. He was filmed making an 11-foot leap at a dog show by Duncan's acquaintance Charles Jones, who had just developed a slow-motion camera. Seeing his dog being filmed, Duncan became convinced Rin Tin Tin could become the next Strongheart. He later wrote, "I was so excited over the motion-picture idea that I found myself thinking of it night and day."
The dog's big break came when he stepped in for a recalcitrant wolf in The Man From Hell's River (1922). Rin Tin Tin would be cast as a wolf or wolf-hybrid many times in his career, though he did not look like one.
His first starring role was in Where the North Begins (1923), playing alongside silent screen actress Claire Adams. This film was a huge success and has often been credited with saving Warner Brothers from bankruptcy. It was followed by Shadows of the North (1923), The Lighthouse by the Sea (1924), Clash of the Wolves (1925), The Night Cry (1926), A Dog of the Regiment (1927), Tracked by the Police (1927) and Tiger Rose (1929).
Legend indicates that Rin Tin Tin was nominated for Best Actor at the first Academy Award competition in 1929 however Emil Jannings actually won the Best Actor award for The Way of All Flesh and The Last Command Although primarily a star of silent films, Rin Tin Tin did appear in four sound features, including the 12-part Mascot Studios chapter-play The Lightning Warrior (1931), co-starring with Frankie Darro.
Warner Bros. got thousands of requests for pictures of Rinty, which were signed with a paw print and a line written by Duncan: "Most faithfully, Rin Tin Tin."
Between 1930 and 1955, "Rin Tin Tin" was heard in three different radio series, beginning April 5, 1930 with The Wonder Dog, in which the original Rin Tin Tin did his own sound effects until his death in 1932, when Rin Tin Tin, Jr. took over. This 15-minute program was broadcast Saturdays on the Blue Network at 8:15pm until March 1931 when it moved to 8:15pm on Thursdays.
In September 1930, the title changed from The Wonder Dog to Rin Tin Tin. Don Ameche and Junior McLain starred in the series, which ended June 8, 1933. With Ken-L Ration as a sponsor, the series continued on CBS from October 5, 1933 until May 20, 1934, airing Sundays at 7:45pm.
The final radio series was broadcast on Mutual from January 2, 1955 to December 25, 1955 a 30-minute program heard Sundays at 5pm. Sponsored by National Biscuit for Shredded Wheat and Milk-Bone, the series featured Rin Tin Tin's adventures with the 101st Cavalry. The show starred Lee Aaker (born 1943) as Rusty, James Brown (1920–1992) as Lieutenant Ripley "Rip" Masters and Joe Sawyer (1906–1982) as Sergeant Biff O'Hara.
Rin Tin Tin was much sought after and was signed for endorsement deals. He was featured in ads for Ken-L Ration, Ken-L-Biskit, and Pup-E-Crumbles.
In the 1920s, Rin Tin Tin's success for Warner Brothers inspired several imitations from other studios looking to cash in on his popularity, notably RKO's Ace the Wonder Dog, also a German Shepherd.
Death and posthumous recognition
Following Rin Tin Tin's death in August 1932 in Los Angeles (in the arms of actress Jean Harlow, according to Hollywood legend), his owner arranged to have the dog returned to his country of birth for burial in the Cimetière des Chiens, the renowned pet cemetery in the Parisian suburb of Asnières-sur-Seine. He was 13 years old.
In the United States, his death set off a national response. Regular programming was interrupted by a news bulletin. An hour long program about Rin Tin Tin played the next day
"Rin Tin Tin" was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 1623 Vine St. in 1963 
Greta Garbo, W.K. Kellogg, and Jean Harlow each owned one of Rin Tin Tin's descendants.
In New York City, New York, Mayor Jimmy Walker gave Rin Tin Tin a key to the city.
Successor Rin Tin Tins
Rin Tin Tin, Jr., appeared in several short films in the 1930s. He starred with Rex the Wild Horse in the Mascot Pictures serials, The Law of the Wild (1934) and The Adventures of Rex and Rinty (1935). He voiced the part of Rinty in the radio shows produced during that era, as well. He was sired by the first Rin Tin Tin and his mother was Champion Asta of Linwood, also owned by Lee Duncan. Lee Duncan gave some of the original Rin Tin Tin's puppies, those from mate Nanette (the second Nanette who was given to Duncan to replace the original who had died shortly after arriving in the United States), to friends such as Greta Garbo, Jean Harlow, and Will Keith Kellogg.
Rin Tin Tin III starred alongside a young Robert Blake in 1947's The Return of Rin Tin Tin but is primarily credited with assisting Duncan in the training of more than 5,000 dogs for the World War II war effort at Camp Hahn, California.
Orlean, Susan (2011). Rin Tin Tin: The Life and the Legend. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster. p. 336. ISBN 978-1-4391-9013-5.
Hereford, Daphne (2011). Rin Tin Tin: The Lineage and the Legacy. p. 80. ISBN 978-1-4681-1498-0.
Cooper, P.T. (2012). Rin Tin Tin and the Lost King. p. 173. ISBN 978-0615651910.
Jim Brown as Lt. Masters in the TV series The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin
The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin, an ABC television series, ran from October 1954 to May 1959. It featured Duncan's Rin Tin Tin IV as the lead dog, although some of the work was performed by a dog owned by Frank Barnes called J.R. and Duncan's Rin Tin Tin line dogs named Hey You and Rin Tin Tin II. This Rinty was far lighter in color than the original sable dog.
The authentic bloodline of Rin Tin Tin was not lost following the death of Lee Duncan on September 20, 1960. With his endorsement, the bloodline continued in Texas with Jannettia Brodsgaard Propps, who had purchased several direct descendants from Duncan. Her granddaughter, Daphne Hereford, continued the lineage and the legacy of Rin Tin Tin following her grandmother's death on December 17, 1988. With Hereford's guidance, the authentic bloodline of Rin Tin Tin continued and after her 50+ years monitoring the bloodline, the legacy was passed to her daughter, Dorothy Yanchak in July 2011. The current Rin Tin Tin is twelfth in line from the original and makes personal appearances across the country to promote responsible pet ownership. Rin Tin Tin was the recipient of the 2011 American Humane Association Legacy award and was honored by the Academy of Arts and Sciences in a special program, Hollywood Dogs: From Rin Tin Tin to Uggie, on June 6, 2012, at the Samuel Goldwin Theatre. Rin Tin Tin continues to make personal appearances across the country and works in film and other ventures.
The authentic Rin Tin Tin line dogs are also trained as service dogs to provide assistance to special needs children.
Rin Tin Tin in popular culture
Produced by Herbert B. Leonard, the 1988–93 Canadian TV series Katts and Dog, featuring the adventures of a police officer and his canine partner, was titled Rin Tin Tin: K9 Cop for its American showings. More recent films featuring authentic Rin Tin Tin line dogs include the 2006 production titled Rin Tin Tin... A Living Legacy.
A film loosely based on Rin Tin Tin's debut is Won Ton Ton, the Dog Who Saved Hollywood.
A fictionalized account of Lee Duncan finding and raising Rin Tin Tin is a major part of the novel Sunnyside by Glen David Gold
Rin Tin Tin has been featured as a character in many fiction works, including Cooper, P.T. (2012). Rin Tin Tin and the Lost King. p. 173. ISBN 978-0615651910., a children's book in which Rin Tin Tin and the other animal characters are able to talk to one another but are unable to talk to humans.
Rinty was featured on CBS Sunday Morning on September 25, 2011 showing the history, career and lineage of Rin Tin Tin.
Rin Tin Tin was named recipient of the 2011 American Humane Association Legacy Award in Beverly Hills in October 2011
The Man from Hell's River (1922)
Where the North Begins (1923)
Shadows of the North (1923)
The Lighthouse by the Sea (1924)
Clash of the Wolves (1925)
The Night Cry (1926)
While London Sleeps (1926)
Hills of Kentucky (1927)
Tracked by the Police (1927)
A Race for Life (1928)
Jaws of Steel (1928)
The Million Dollar Collar (1929)
A Dog of the Regiment (1929)
Tiger Rose (1929)
The Lone Defender (1930)
On the Border (1930)
The Man Hunter (1930)
Rough Waters (1930)
The Lightning Warrior (1931)
Rin Tin Tin Jr. filmography
Pride of the Legion (1932)
The Wolf Dog (1933)
The Law of the Wild (1934)
Skull and Crown (1935)
The Test (1935)
The Adventures of Rex and Rinty (1935)
Tough guy (1936)
Vengeance of Rannah (1936)
Caryl of the Mountains (1936)
The Silver Trail (1937)
Fangs of the Wild (1939)
Death Goes North (1939)
Rin Tin Tin III filmography
Law of the Wolf (1939)
The Return of Rin Tin Tin (1947)
^ Orlean, Susan (August 29, 2011). "The Dog Star". The New Yorker. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
^ French puppets
^ a b c d History of Rin Tin Tin
^ a b c d e f Orlean, Susan. "The Dog Star", The New Yorker, August 29, 2011.
^ "The Dog Star - Rin Tin Tin and the making of Warner Bros.". The New Yorker. August 29, 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-25.
^ "Rin Tin Tin the First Actual Best Actor Academy Award Winner? Think Again". Alt Film Guide. January 4, 2012. Retrieved 2012-01-04.
^ Dunning, John. On The Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio. Oxford University Press, 1998. ISBN 0-19-507678-8
^ Basinger, Jeanine, Rin Tin Tin chapter in Silent Stars, 1999. ISBN 0-8195-6451-6
^ a b Orlean, Susan (2011-09-24). "Rin Tin Tin: From Battlefield To Hollywood, A Story Of Friendship : Monkey See". NPR. Retrieved 2012-05-17.
^ Canine Stars on Hollywood's Walk of Fame
^ Orr, Gertrude, Dog Stars of Hollywood. Akron, Ohio: The Saalfield Publishing Company, 1936
^ Eder, Richard. "Review," The New York Times.
Rin Tin Tin at the Internet Movie Database
Rin Tin Tin at Findagrave
Interview with Susan Orlean, author of Rin Tin Tin: The Life and the Legend | The Lit Show
Couple Profile Source
Claim to Fame
Starred in twenty-three Hollywood films
Place of Death
Los Angeles, California, USA
Lee Duncan (owner, Trainer)
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