In the 1950's and 60's very few television actors ever rose to a career in movies, being that TV was the far lesser medium at the time. But Clint Eastwood turned out to be a major exception when he jumped at the chance to shed his Rawhide image by starring in then unknown Sergio Leone's Italian-made western A Fistful of Dollars. It was a huge risk, but one that paid off in spades when he donned the hat and poncho, and a legend was born almost instantly. Leone pretty much reinvented the genre in the form of the spaghetti western, which spawned its own cult of fans that exists to this day. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly is the best of the three films, and my favorite too, but all of them are great and the trilogy is a must have for any fan of classic westerns.
Original Trailer for A Fistful of Dollars (1964):