I agree with Sebastian, the reason the genre faded out was simply burn out. Look at the history of the western. From the time movies began in the early 1900's thru the 1970's, the western was the dominant movie genre. Hundreds of films, big budget and "B" movies and dozens of TV shows, at one point in the '50's there were 30 western TV shows on American television at the same time. There have been comedy westerns (Blazing Saddles, Support Your Local Gunfighter) Sci-Fi westerns (The Wild Wild West,Brisco County Jr.) and of course foriegn made westerns ( our wonderful spaghetti westerns). People simply got tired of them. Another reason (I believe at least) was the coming of "Star Wars". When the original film was realesed in "77 all of a sudden kids, who for generations wanted six shooters and cowboy hats now wanted light sabers and blasters. After "Star Wars" came a revivial Of "Star Trek" and movies like "Close Encounters", hell, even 007 went to outer space in "Moonraker", so now the old frontier became -to quote Captain Kirk- the final frontier, and the western faded. In recent years I've noticed that the western is poised on the brink of a comeback. Comic Books, computer games, novels even web sites like this one are proving the old horse still has some life. All we need now is a GOOD movie to start the ball rolling again. I know Brad Pitt is making a "Jesse James" movie and the gorgeous Salma Hayek is making "Bandidas". Keep your fingers crossed and hope these are good movies and they make money, because if they do, the western will ride again!