Pest from the West

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Pest from the West
Directed by Del Lord
Produced by Jules White
Written by Clyde Bruckman
Buster Keaton
Starring Buster Keaton
Lorna Gray
Gino Corrado
Richard Fiske
Bud Jamison
Forbes Murray
Eddie Laughton
Ned Glass
Cinematography Henry Freulich
Edited by Charles Nelson
Distributed by Columbia Pictures
Release date
  • June 16, 1939 (1939-06-16)
Country United States
Language English

Pest from the West is the first short subject starring American comedian Buster Keaton made for Columbia Pictures. Keaton made a total of ten films for the studio between 1939 and 1941.


Keaton is a millionaire vacationing in Mexico traveler who falls in love with a senorita (Lorna Gray) and sets out to win her.


This was the first film made by Columbia Pictures starring Keaton and was a condensed remake of his English-made feature film The Invader (1935). Keaton's silent-era writer Clyde Bruckman collaborated on the screenplay and it was directed by comedy veteran Del Lord. The supporting cast features Columbia regulars Lorna Gray, Gino Corrado, Richard Fiske, Bud Jamison, Eddie Laughton, and Ned Glass with the voices of short-subject stars Charley Chase and Curly Howard heard on the soundtrack.

Much of Pest from the West was filmed on location at Balboa, California, United States (Keaton repeatedly falls off his boat, into Balboa Bay). The Mexican-village settings were adapted from sets used in Columbia's 1937 feature film Lost Horizon.


Pest from the West was a huge hit in theaters, and earned rave reports from exhibitors. Keaton starred in nine more Columbia shorts, the last of which was She's Oil Mine. Like Pest from the West, this borrowed content from an older Keaton feature, The Passionate Plumber.

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