Daniel Petrie, Sr.

Director


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In his four-and-a-half hour interview, Daniel Petrie, Sr. (1920-2004) recalls his introduction to television directing, in Chicago in the 1950's, working on programs including Studs' Place and Billy Rose's Playbill. He talks about directing episodes of many television series during the 1950's, including The U.S. Steel Hour, The Alcoa Hour, Armstrong Circle Theatre, Excursion, Justice, and Omnibus. Petrie discusses his directing assignments in the 1960s and 1970s, including Bob Hope Presents Chrysler Theatre, The Defenders, Ironside, Marcus Welby, M.D., and Medical Center. Finally, he touches upon some of his feature film work (including "A Raisin in the Sun"), as well as his made-for-television movies such as Sybil, Eleanor and Franklin, The Dollmaker, Kissinger and Nixon, and Inherit the Wind. Michael Rosen conducted the interview on February 28, 2001 in Los Angeles, CA.

"The wonderful thing about directing, is that you're playing all the parts - you're the king, you're the queen, you're the jester. It's fun being able to do that."

Interviewee(s)
Highlights
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on Chicago's contribution to television in the 1950s, and on the end of Studs' Place
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Ironside, starring Raymond Burr
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Eleanor and Franklin, with Jane Alexander and Edward Herrmann, for which he won an Emmy Award
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Sally Field in Sybil
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing the The United States Steel Hour episode "Bang the Drum Slowly," starring Paul Newman
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing the features film "The Bramble Bush" and "A Raisin in the Sun"
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On deciding what to do with his life; on his education
On serving in the Royal Canadian Army; on taking courses at NBC

Chapter 2

On Johnny Carson; on directing Studs' Place, starring Studs Terkel; on how the studio was set up for Studs' Place

Chapter 3

On directing Panhandle Pete and Jennifer; on going from Chicago to NBC in New York to direct The Billy Rose Show; on dealing with different temperaments while directing The Billy Rose Show
On Chicago's contribution to television in the 1950s, and on the end of Studs' Place; on learning on the job to be a director in early television, and on the craft of directing television

Chapter 4

On directing The Alcoa Hour for producer Herbert Brodkin and Alex Segal; on directing an Armstrong Circle Theatre, featuring Fred Allen; on directing Treasury Men in Action, and on his experience with the Hollywood Blacklist

Chapter 5

On directing the pilot for Justice and appearing as an actor in the show; on directing the The United States Steel Hour episode "Bang the Drum Slowly," starring Paul Newman

Chapter 6

On directing the features film "The Bramble Bush" and "A Raisin in the Sun"; on directing The Defenders, and on feature films versus television; on directing Bob Hope Presents Chrysler Theatre

Chapter 7

On directing Ironside, starring Raymond Burr; on directing McMillan & Wife, starring Rock Hudson
On directing Marcus Welby, M.D. and Medical Center; on directing Sally Field and Joanne Woodward in Sybil

Chapter 8

On how he feels about his projects when he has finished directing them; on directing Eleanor and Franklin: The White House Years
On directing Jane Fonda in The Dollmaker; on directing "Cocoon: The Return," starring Hume Cronyn; on directing My Name Is Bill W.

Chapter 9

On how directing for network compares to directing for cable; on career and personal highlights
On advice to aspiring television directors; on filmmakers who inspired him
Shows

Alcoa Hour, The

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing The Alcoa Hour for producer Herbert Brodkin and Alex Segal

Armstrong Circle Theatre

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing an Armstrong Circle Theatre, featuring Fred Allen

Art Carney Specials

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing the Art Carney Special "Victory"

Bob Hope Presents Chrysler Theatre

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Bob Hope Presents Chrysler Theatre
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Bob Hope Presents Chrysler Theatre

Calm at Sunset

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Calm at Sunset and Inherit the Wind, with Jack Lemmon and George C. Scott

Defenders, The

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing The Defenders, and on feature films versus television

Dollmaker, The

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing The Dollmaker, starring Jane Fonda, and on the benefits of on-location shooting

DuPont Show of the Month, The

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing The DuPont Show of the Month, adaptations of classic books producer David Susskind

Eleanor and Franklin

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Eleanor and Franklin, for which he won an Emmy Award

Eleanor and Franklin: The White House Years

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing the sequel to Eleanor and Franklin, Eleanor and Franklin: The White House Years, which also won multiple Emmy Awards

Hallmark Hall of Fame

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Hallmark Hall of Fame

Inherit the Wind

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Calm at Sunset and Inherit the Wind, with Jack Lemmon and George C. Scott

Ironside

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Ironside, starring Raymond Burr

Justice

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing the pilot for Justice and appearing as an actor in the show

Kissinger and Nixon

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Kissinger and Nixon for TNT, starring Beau Bridges and Ron Silver

Marcus Welby, M.D.

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Marcus Welby, M.D. and Medical Center

McMillan & Wife

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing McMillan & Wife, starring Rock Hudson

Medical Center

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Marcus Welby, M.D. and Medical Center

My Name Is Bill W.

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing My Name Is Bill W.

Omnibus

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing "Excursion," a segment of an Omnibus episode featuring Kim Stanley

Silent Night, Lonely Night

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Silent Night, Lonely Night

Studs' Place

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Studs' Place, starring Studs Terkel
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on NBC production head Ted Mills offering him the job as director of Studs' Place
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on how the studio was set up for Studs' Place
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on Chicago's contribution to television in the 1950s, and on the end of Studs' Place

Sybil

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Sally Field and Joanne Woodward in Sybil
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on the challenges of directing Sybil

Treasury Men in Action

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Treasury Men in Action, and on his experience with the Hollywood Blacklist

United States Steel Hour, The

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing the The United States Steel Hour episode "Bang the Drum Slowly," starring Paul Newman
Topics

Advice

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on advice to aspiring television directors

Creative Influences and Inspiration

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on filmmakers who inspired him

Emmy Awards

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Eleanor and Franklin, for which he won an Emmy Award
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing the sequel to Eleanor and Franklin, Eleanor and Franklin: The White House Years, which also won multiple Emmy Awards

Hollywood Blacklist

View Topic
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Treasury Men in Action, and on his experience with the Hollywood Blacklist
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on dealing with the Hollywood Blacklist

Industry Crossroads

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Treasury Men in Action, and on his experience with the Hollywood Blacklist
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on dealing with the Hollywood Blacklist

Pivotal Career Moments

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on filmmakers who inspired him

Television Industry

View Topic
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Treasury Men in Action, and on his experience with the Hollywood Blacklist
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on dealing with the Hollywood Blacklist
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on how directing for network compares to directing for cable
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on advice to aspiring television directors
Professions

Directors

View Profession
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on learning on the job to be a director in early television, and on the craft of directing television
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on his process for directing live programming in the 1950s
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on using his previous experience on stage when directing television, and on keeping his temper in check
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on the experience of directing a live television production in the 1950s
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on not having "final cut" as a director
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on how he feels about his projects when he has finished directing them
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on his involvement in the casting process of the shows and features he directs
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on advice to aspiring television directors
Genres

Children's Programming

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Panhandle Pete and Jennifer

Classic Anthology Series

View Genre
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing The Billy Rose Show
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing "Excursion," a segment of an Omnibus episode featuring Kim Stanley
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing the The United States Steel Hour episode "Bang the Drum Slowly," starring Paul Newman
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Bob Hope Presents Chrysler Theatre
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Hallmark Hall of Fame

Cop/Detective/Mystery Series

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Ironside
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing McMillan & Wife

Legal Dramas

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing the pilot for Justice and appearing as an actor in the show

Medical Dramas

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Marcus Welby, M.D. and Medical Center

TV Movies/Miniseries/Dramatic Specials

View Genre
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Silent Night, Lonely Night
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Sally Field in Sybil
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on the challenges of directing Sybil
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Eleanor and Franklin and Eleanor and Franklin: The White House Years
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing The Dollmaker
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing My Name Is Bill W.
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Kissinger and Nixon
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Calm at Sunset and Inherit the Wind

Talk Shows

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Studs' Place
People

Herbert Brodkin

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing The Alcoa Hour for producer Herbert Brodkin and Alex Segal

Raymond Burr

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Ironside, starring Raymond Burr

Art Carney

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing the Art Carney Special "Victory"

Johnny Carson

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on Johnny Carson

Hume Cronyn

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing "Cocoon: The Return," starring Hume Cronyn

James Dean

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on working with James Dean

Sally Field

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Sally Field and Joanne Woodward in Sybil
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on the challenges of directing Sybil starring Sally Field

Jane Fonda

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing The Dollmaker, starring Jane Fonda

Rock Hudson

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing McMillan & Wife, starring Rock Hudson

Jack Lemmon

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Calm at Sunset and Inherit the Wind, with Jack Lemmon and George C. Scott

Ted Mills

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on NBC production head Ted Mills offering him the job as director of Studs' Place

Paul Newman

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing the The United States Steel Hour episode "Bang the Drum Slowly," starring Paul Newman

Mickey Rooney

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing My Name Is Bill W., starring Mickey Rooney

George C. Scott

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Calm at Sunset and Inherit the Wind, with Jack Lemmon and George C. Scott

Alex Segal

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing The Alcoa Hour for producer Herbert Brodkin and Alex Segal

Kim Stanley

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing "Excursion," a segment of an Omnibus episode featuring Kim Stanley

David Susskind

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing The DuPont Show of the Month, adaptations of classic books producer David Susskind

Studs Terkel

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Studs' Place, starring Studs Terkel
Daniel Petrie, Sr. on having "creative differences" arguments with Studs Terkel on Studs' Place

Joanne Woodward

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Daniel Petrie, Sr. on directing Sally Field and Joanne Woodward in Sybil

All Interviews

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