Tuesday, March 30, 2010

ROBERT CULP SOUNDS OFF

It's not what you think.....

This is an oddity preserved by The Museum of Classic Chicago Television: a scene from a TV special presentation, "Give Me Liberty", with Robert Culp as John Freeborn and also with Richard Kiley. For most of the excerpt, you hear nothing but that irritating hum and then two different announcers alerting viewers that they are experiencing technical difficulties. Only at the very end do you hear anyone speak, and that's Kiley's character, not Culp's.

[It looks like the embed code won't work. So you'll have to click over to the site to see it.]

Apparently, this was the first of several proposed specials in which Culp's character of John Freeborn would be present at pivotal moments in the growth of America. This one was about the settlers in the Eastern region of the country, leading up to the Revolution. The next one had Burgess Meredith as Culp's co-star, "Land Of The Free". I don't think the rest of the series was ever filmed.

I'd like to see more of these productions, so I've added them to my museum trip list. Not that I'll probably ever find the screen captures, but there are at least two viable candidates for the "As Seen On TV" showcase: Paul Revere (John Chappell) in the first and Andrew Jackson (Jeff Corey) in the second one.

As it seems nearly a century passes in the proposed series of specials, I'm wondering if John Freeborn, was - like Trent in the "Demon With A Glass Hand" episode of 'The Outer Limits' - an Eternal Man.

Hrmmmmmm..... One might even have a bit of fun in suggesting that Trent used time travel to go back to the 1770s to avoid the Kyben. (After having found a way to disguise his glass hand to look like a real hand, of course.....)

BCnU!

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi-I am from calhoun Ga where the movie "Give me Liberty" was filmed on a cherokee Indian Reserve there called "New Echota" Many of my cousins were extras in the film-I remember being so excited sitting in front of the tv with popcorn just waiting to watch the made for TV movie ( I was 9) then it came on and there was no sound! I cant believe all those people stood out in the hot Georgia son in the summer for all those long days and hours to make a movie noone could here!! Wish I could find this movie so I could buy it and watch it just to see my cousins! Robert Culp was a great actor-he will be missed!

Toby O'B said...

Thank you so much for sharing that! All those behind the scenes tidbits contribute to a great history of television....

komodori said...

I worked as PA on both films at all three Georgia locations and spent a week in NYC after the shoot helping out the producers. I still have about 50 pages of script and some cast and crew listings and will be glad to share information if you are interested. I'm amazed you the ads still exist, and would love to see the clip again---I watched it last year. rohale111@bellsouth.net Thanks!

Toby O'B said...

I did end up seeing two of the stories - the one with Burgess Meredith as John Adams, and the other was about the freedom of the Press. I think it was a noble project......