Curly haired and with dimples, 1920s cowboy star Fred Gilman (born Horace Gillman) suffered a strange fate in Hollywood. Although better looking and a great deal younger than the majority of saddle aces at the time, he somehow failed to bridge the gap between two-reelers and feature Westerns. Gilman had been Hoot Gibson's stunt double when elevated by Universal to two-reel stardom. The Gilman series proved better than average, especially after newcomer William Wyler took over directing chores from studio hack Josef Levigard. Obviously being groomed for full-fledged Western stardom, Gilman was suddenly derailed by the coming of sound and instead found himself without a job when the studio closed down the Western units. The always faithful Hoot Gibson came to the rescue and hired him for his independent films through 1935, but after that Gilman worked mainly as a riding extra and as a horse trainer at MGM. In what appears to be his only surviving starring film, the Wyler-directed The Ore Raiders from 1927, Fred Gilman could easily be mistaken for Hoot Gibson's younger brother and handles a climactic fight with veteran villain Bud Osborne like an old pro.