NBC Matinee Theater


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

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About

From Wikipedia

Matinee Theater is an American anthology series that aired on NBC during the Golden Age of Television, from 1955 to 1958. The series, which ran daily in the afternoon, was frequently live. It was produced by Albert McCleery, Darrell Ross, George Cahan and Frank Price with executive producer George Lowther. McCleery had previously produced the live series Cameo Theatre which introduced to television the concept of theater-in-the-round, TV plays staged with minimal sets.

Genre Anthology

Directed by

John Drew Barrymore

Alan Cooke

Walter Grauman

Arthur Hiller

Lamont Johnson

Sherman Marks

Lawrence Menkin

Albert McCleery

Boris Sagal

Pace Woods

 

No. of seasons 3

No. of episodes 650

Production

Executive producer(s) George Lowther

Producer(s) George Cahan

Albert McCleery

Frank Price

Darrell Ross

Running time 60 mins.

Broadcast

Original channel NBC

Original run October 31, 1955 – June 27, 1958

 

Highlights
Barbara Billingsley on appearing on Matinee Theatre live broadcasts
Robert Culp on his first television work in Los Angeles on Matinee Theater
Leonard Nimoy on getting a small role on a Matinee Theater episode (with Vincent Price, directed by Boris Sagal) and getting fired from another episode
Lynn Stalmaster on casting live television, for Matinee Theater
Elinor Donahue on performing on Matinee Theater
Who talked about this show

Ray Aghayan

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Ray Aghayan on his early costume design experiences for Matinee Theater
Ray Aghayan on costume design for Matinee Theater

Barbara Billingsley

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Barbara Billingsley on appearing on Matinee Theatre live broadcasts

John Conte

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John Conte on appearing on Matinee Theater, and being sent to Atlanta by David Sarnoff to promote NBC
John Conte on David Sarnoff and on working with producer Albert McCleery on Matinee Theater
John Conte on acting as host for Matinee Theater, and on the audience of the show
John Conte on the writers and producers of Matinee Theater, including producer Albert McCleery
John Conte on the production of Matinee Theater, on the cost of the show, and on actors who appeared during its run
John Conte on mishaps during the broadcast of Matinee Theater, and on the cancellation of the show

Robert Culp

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Robert Culp on his first television work in Los Angeles on Matinee Theater

Elinor Donahue

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Elinor Donahue on performing on Matinee Theater

Walter E. Grauman

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Director Walter Grauman on actress Sarah Churchill needing to get bailed out of jail to make her "live" appearance on Matinee Theater
Director Walter Grauman on working with boxer Primo Carnera on Matinee Theater: "Frankenstein" (airdate: 2/5/57), in which an overzealous and unrehearsed Carnera (playing Frankenstein's monster) threw an actor through the scenery
Director Walter Grauman on how a superstition led Sylvia Sidney to forget the final line on "live" TV for a Matinee Theater show [tentatively identified by Grauman as "Death of a Salesman" but possibly "The Gift and the Giver" (airdate: 12/16/57)]
Director Walter Grauman on a mishap that occurred to Constance Bennett minutes before a "live" TV production of Matinee Theater [likely "One Hundred Red Convertibles (airdate: 9/5/56), for which the credits match]
Director Walter Grauman briefly on Cameo Theatre and Matinee Theater creator/producer Albert McCleery

Arthur Hiller

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Arthur Hiller on how he came to direct NBC Matinee Theater, based on a show he had directed in Canada for the CBC
Arthur Hiller on his first time directing NBC Matinee Theater and his nerves on the set
Arthur Hiller on the schedule for producing NBC Matinee Theater and the excitement of directing for live television
Arthur Hiller on dealing with an athlete who couldn't act appearing on NBC Matinee Theater, and his love of doing "live" television
Arthur Hiller on idea he "stole" from Delbert Mann while directing NBC Matinee Theater
Arthur Hiller on Dennis Hopper's appearance on an episode of NBC Matinee Theater
Arthur Hiller on John Conte as host of NBC Matinee Theater
Arthur Hiller on working with producer Albert McCleery on NBC Matinee Theater
Arthur Hiller on leaving NBC Matinee Theater
Arthur Hiller on the opportunities and limitations of NBC Matinee Theater due to the fact it was a daily show, and interference from the sponsors
Arthur Hiller on the lack of sets on both NBC Matinee Theaterand Cameo Theatre
Arthur Hiller on NBC Matinee Theater being broadcast in color
Arthur Hiller on Dennis Hopper appearing on an episode of NBC Matinee Theater
Arthur Hiller on John Conte as host of NBC Matinee Theater
Arthur Hiller on the rehearsal process for NBC Matinee Theater
Arthur Hiller on moving from "live" television on NBC Matinee Theater to film television

Lamont Johnson

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Lamont Johnson on the kinds of roles he got as an actor, and on working with producer Albert McCleery on NBC Matinee Theater
Lamont Johnson on the challenges of directing live broadcasts of NBC Matinee Theater, and on appearing in early televised Shakespeare adaptations
Lamont Johnson on directing John Carradine in the NBC Matinee Theater production of "Dracula"
Lamont Johnson on the quick costume changes and makeup needed for live productions of NBC Matinee Theater
Lamont Johnson on selecting material to adapt for NBC Matinee Theater, and on the music and casting of the show
Lamont Johnson on casting for NBC Matinee Theater, and on working with Zsa Zsa Gabor
Lamont Johnson on being on the Hollywood Blacklist, and on producer Albert McCleery disregarding it to hire him
Lamont Johnson on dealing with the Hollywood Blacklist in regards to NBC Matinee Theater
Lamont Johnson on NBC Matinee Theater host John Conte, and on the sponsors and intended audience of the show
Lamont Johnson on the curtain calls and end credits of NBC Matinee Theater, and on the show being in color
Lamont Johnson on working with actress Sarah Churchill on NBC Matinee Theater
Lamont Johnson on the producers and budget of NBC Matinee Theater
Lamont Johnson on leaving NBC Matinee Theater to work on the Berlin Festival, and on directing Thornton Wilder as the "Stage Manager" in a production of "Our Town"

Russell Johnson

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Russell Johnson on his early appearances on Matinee Theater

Nancy Malone

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Nancy Malone on working with Dean Stockwell on Matinee Theater

Abby Mann

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Abby Mann on writing for The Kate Smith Show and Matinee Theater, and on his friendship with Tony Bennett

Jerry Mathers

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Jerry Mathers on working on Matinee Theater

Kent McCray

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Kent McCray on being an associate producer on NBC Matinee Theater
Kent McCray on associate producing NBC Matinee Theater

Alan Neuman

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Alan Neuman on directing NBC Matinee Theater

Leonard Nimoy

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Leonard Nimoy on getting a small role on a Matinee Theater episode (with Vincent Price, directed by Boris Sagal) and getting fired from another episode
Leonard Nimoy on appearing on Matinee Theater and the workweek on this daily "live" anthology

Frances Reid

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Frances Reid on appearing on NBC Matinee Theater

Del Reisman

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Del Reisman on the production details of NBC Matinee Theater
Del Reisman on working with NBC Matinee Theater producer Albert McCleery
Del Reisman on working on NBC Matinee Theater
Del Reisman on working with Albert McCleery on NBC Matinee Theater
Del Reisman on NBC broadcasting NBC Matinee Theater in color
Del Reisman on the types of productions done on NBC Matinee Theater
Del Reisman on a typical workweek on NBC Matinee Theater
Del Reisman on the various actors who appeared on NBC Matinee Theater over the years, including Wendy Hiller and Sarah Churchill
Del Reisman on the challenge of holding the viewer's attention for NBC Matinee Theater
Del Reisman on Steve McQueen appearing on NBC Matinee Theater
Del Reisman on the writers of NBC Matinee Theater, and on the show adapting from many sources
Del Reisman on the most memorable NBC Matinee Theater episodes, and on the death of Albert McCleery
Del Reisman on his family during the time he was story editing NBC Matinee Theater
Del Reisman on leaving NBC Matinee Theater and going to Playhouse 90

Gene Reynolds

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Gene Reynolds on being a casting director for NBC Matinee Theater
Gene Reynolds on the Hollywood Blacklist

Marion Ross

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Marion Ross on performing on Matinee Theater, and on what it was like to perform on live television on shows like Studio One

Thomas W. Sarnoff

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Thomas W. Sarnoff on the production of Matinee Theater
Thomas W. Sarnoff on preservation of Matinee Theater and working with producer Albert McCleery

William Schallert

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William Schallert on working on Matinee Theater

Arthur Schneider

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Arthur Schneider on working on NBC Matinee Theater

Jan Scott

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Jan Scott on doing art direction for NBC Matinee Theater, and on being nominated for Emmys

Doris Singleton

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Doris Singleton on working on 3 episodes of Matinee Theater

Lynn Stalmaster

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Lynn Stalmaster on casting live television, for Matinee Theater

Ret Turner

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Ret Turner on a mishap during Matinee Theater

Alan Young

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Alan Young on appearing in the live Matinee Theater teleplay "Ask Me No Questions" (airdate: April 10, 1956)

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