Ronald Reagan's Top 10 Movie Roles

Ronald Reagan
Everett Collection

Love Is on the Air, 1937
On June 1, 1937, a 26-year-old with no professional acting experience, whose previous jobs included announcing baseball games on the radio, landed a $200-a-week contract at Warner Bros. Four months and a day later, his first feature was released. Reagan's attributes: a golden smile and a long, strong frame. The Warner scribes tailored Love Is on the Air to his talents. Reagan plays crusading radio commentator Andy McCaine, who gets in trouble with the local politicos and is switched to hosting a kiddie show, for which he must read bedtime stories and announce bicycle races. Since much of the film is devoted to Andy's broadcasts, Reagan didn't have to memorize a lot of dialogue, instead being able to declaim it while reading the script. But the studio was pleased enough to launch Reagan as a leading man in B pictures and as a supporting actor in more upscale products. In four of these, he appears with pert soubrette Jane Wyman, Reagan's wife from 1940 to 1948.

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