Fonda made his mark early as a Broadway actor and made his Hollywood film debut in 1935. His film career began to gain momentum with roles such as Bette Davis's fiancee in her Academy Award-winning performance in Jezebel (1938), brother Frank in Jesse James (1939), and the future President in Young Mr. Lincoln (1939), directed by John Ford. His early career peaked with his Academy Award-nominated performance as Tom Joad in The Grapes of Wrath, about an Oklahoma family who moved to California during the Dust Bowl 1930s. This film is widely considered to be among the greatest American films.
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