In 1937, Republic Pictures released the 12-chapter film serial, Zorro Rides Again. Directed by William Witney and John English, the serial starred John Carroll as the eponymous hero, as he crosses paths with a villain attempting to take over the California-Yucatan Railroad.
As with most serials of its time, Zorro Rides Again followed a fairly standard structural format, with a storyline that borrowed ideas and plotting from one of the many Westerns of the era. However, regardless of its simplistic approach to story, Zorro Rides Again proved popular with audiences, who enjoyed seeing Zorro on the big screen!
As such, after the release of Zorro Rides Again, Republic Pictures quickly put another 12-chapter Zorro serial into production. This one arrived in cinemas in 1939, under the title Zorro’s Fighting Legion, with Reed Hadley taking on the role of masked character.
Moving into the 1940s, and with the character still remaining popular, further Zorro serials soon followed. All of them came via Republic Pictures, and all told exciting tales about the mask-clad hero!
But how many Zorro movie serials did Republic Pictures produce? For all the details and more, keep reading.
The Zorro movie serials in order
In total, Republic Pictures produced 5 Zorro movie serials between 1937 and 1949. The serials are as follows:
- Zorro Rides Again (1937)
- Zorro’s Fighting Legion (1939)
- Zorro’s Black Whip (1944)
- Son of Zorro (1947)
- Ghost of Zorro (1949)
Are all of the serials about the same Zorro?
While Republic Pictures produced five serials over the course of a 12-year period, none of them focus on the same Zorro. Each serial focuses on a different version of the character, and in one of the serials, the hero isn’t even called Zorro!
- In Zorro Rides Again, James Vega is the masked alter-ego of Zorro. In this film serial, John Carroll plays the lead role.
- In Zorro’s Fighting Legion, Don Diego Vega is Zorro. For this serial, actor Reed Hadley takes on the title character.
- In Zorro’s Black Whip, the lead hero is played by actress Barbara Meredith. However, due to legal reasons, which prevented Republic from using the name Zorro in the serial, the hero is called The Black Whip.
- In Son of Zorro, Jeffrey Stewart is the man behind the Zorro mask. Actor George Turner plays the character.
- And finally, in Ghost of Zorro, Ken Mason is Zorro. Clayton Moore plays the hero for this fifth and final serial.
Five different serials, and five different Zorros!
Thank you for stopping by It’s A Stampede! to read this post about the classic Zorro movie serials. For more movie posts, be sure to check out the recommended reads below.
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