He moved to Hollywood, where he began a career in Western movies. He was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor for Cimarron in 1931. In the 1940s he starred in The Whistler, the first of a series of seven "Whistler" films. Following the last of them, The Thirteenth Hour, he retired from acting. He died two years later of a heart attack.
Dix has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 1610 Vine Street.