The Movie That Launched a Thousand Television Careers

2 Jul

Last week, my family was traveling, and I spent a lot of time watching movies with my dad. I write that because I have been working on a post about those movies. However, another movie has interrupted the process.

This afternoon, I visited my parents, and my dad was watching a Western that I had never seen. There was a scene with a man and woman talking in a restaurant. The woman looked familiar, and I asked my dad to hit the Info button.

The movie was The Hangman, which was released in 1959, and the cast listing confirmed my suspicions. The woman was Tina Louise, who, in a few years, would gain fame as Ginger on Gilligan’s Island.

It is always cool to find familiar faces in old movies. It is almost like telling someone’s fortune. Do you know that you will soon become famous for being stranded on an island after a three-hour boat tour gone wrong?

Then, the waitress walked up, and she looked familiar. Yep, it was Betty Lynn, who, in a few years, would gain fame as Thelma Lou on The Andy Griffith Show.

At this point, soon to be famous television actors were popping up everywhere. Jack Lord was in jail. In a few years, he would gain fame as Steve McGarrett on Hawaii Five-O.

Fess Parker was the sheriff. At this time, he was once and future famous. In the 1950s, he helped start the coonskin cap craze as Davy Crockett. After this movie, he would attempt to relive the magic as Daniel Boone.

Then, there was Lorne Greene who played the marshal. The same year that The Hangman was released a new television show called Bonanza debuted. In a short time, he would be known throughout as Ben Cartwright, the patriarch who owned the Ponderosa.

As the title of the post says, The Hangman is the movie that launched a thousand television careers. Well, maybe not a thousand, but it came close.

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4 Responses to “The Movie That Launched a Thousand Television Careers”

  1. Marilyn Armstrong July 3, 2017 at 03:07 #

    Garry is great with this stuff. He gives me whole stories about what they did, who they will become. I think he has a very strong fondness for character actor and actresses.

    • Rick July 3, 2017 at 12:47 #

      They are the ones who make a movie great.

  2. Andrew Petcher July 3, 2017 at 07:07 #

    I watched the Bond film Dr No (1962) over the weekend. I had forgotten that Jack Lord played Felix Leiter in that one. I don’t think I have ever seen ‘The Hangman’!

    • Rick July 3, 2017 at 12:49 #

      I forgot that Jack Lord was in that one. The Hangman is not that good. It has a weird ending.

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