Ray Mala appeared in more than 25 films before his death in 1952 at the age of 46. The Alaska Native movie star is best known in his home state for the 1933 epic "Eskimo."
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An Inupiaq actor and cinematographer who came to fame during Hollywood’s golden age has been reburied in Alaska 65 years after his death.
The cremated remains of Ray Mala and his wife Galina Mala were buried with a ceremony in a downtown Anchorage cemetery Monday, the Anchorage Daily News reported .
Ray Mala appeared in more than 25 films before his death in 1952 at the age of 46. The Alaska Native movie star is best known in his home state for his leading role in the 1933 epic “Eskimo.”
His profile in Alaska has been elevated in recent years because his films have become more accessible and his life has been documented in a biography.
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He was born in the now-abandoned Alaska settlement of Candle in 1906 and successfully pursued a “genuinely improbable dream” to become a film star, said Lael Morgan, author of “Eskimo Star: From the Tundra to Tinseltown: The Ray Mala Story.”
“He was just way ahead of his time,” Morgan said.
Ray Mala was previously buried with his wife in California, which his son Ted Mala Sr. said always felt wrong.
Ted Mala and his son undertook the complicated and expensive process to bring the remains home, taking them three years to secure the necessary permissions
“It took tons of paperwork and tons of money, but it was time,” Ted Mala said. “I’m 72 now and it was on my bucket list, bring them home so they can be with lots of people.”
Information from: Anchorage Daily News, http://www.adn.com