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Peyton Place, 1964 Debut Episode, Mia Farrow, Christopher Connelly

Peyton Place, 1964 Debut Episode, Mia Farrow, Christopher Connelly

"Peyton Place"
Season 1, Episode 1
Original broadcast date: September 15, 1964

The soap opera genre came to prime-time television in 1964 with “Peyton Place,” starring young actors Ryan O’Neal (b. April 20, 1941) and Mia Farrow (b. February 9, 1945), both of whom were catapulted to fame as a result of the show.

"Peyton Place," which takes place in a small, fictitious New England town of the same name, was a huge hit when it debuted and it aired for five seasons. It was loosely based on the controversial, best-selling 1956 novel by Grace Metalious, which was followed by a 1957 film. Some of the TV show's cast members during the show's debut episode, in addition to O'Neal and Farrow, included Dorothy Malone (b. January 30, 1925), Ed Nelson (December 21, 1928 - August 9, 2014), Christopher Connelly (September 8, 1941 - December 7, 1988), Barbara Parkins (b. May 22, 1942), Kasey Rogers (December 15, 1925 - July 6, 2006), and Paul Langton (April 17, 1913 - April 15, 1980). Many other characters were added and deleted during the show's five-year run. This premier episode had a film noir quality to it.

Years later, other evening soap operas that met with similar, or greater success were "Dallas," "Dynasty," and "Knots Landing."

Synopsis, via Wikipedia:
The original primetime soap took place in the title town, which was founded by the Peyton family, whose members included the Harringtons. Some of the plots involved Rodney Harrington, the oldest son, choosing between bad girl Betty Anderson or fragile Allison MacKenzie. His brother Norman took up with working class Rita Jacks. Allison's mother Connie was keeping a secret about her daughter's birth. People married and divorced, loved and lost. Murder, illicit passion, insanity, and secrets were the staples of Peyton Place.

A bit of trivia, via Wikipedia:
During the show's 5-year network run, all episodes were original. In an unusual move for prime time, ABC never aired repeats during the summer.
According to her memoirs, Mia Farrow never expected this series to succeed, let alone become the runaway sensation it was. She tried (unsuccessfully) to get out of her contract almost immediately after the show hit the airwaves. Two years later, her then-husband Frank Sinatra used his considerable industry clout to get her released from her contract with ABC. Farrow's character "Allison Mackenzie" was written out by simply having her run away from town and never be heard from again. In 1968, the series' writers got even with Farrow in a way - they wrote a storyline in which a new girl came to town with a baby she claimed was birthed by Allison. This storyline was launched immediately after "Rosemary's Baby" (starring Mia Farrow) went into release.
The producers originally wanted character, Betty Anderson, to die in the car accident in the 11th episode. Because of the rising popularity of portrayer Barbara Parkins, they finally decided not to go forward with it.
The series was originally filmed in black and white. Then in 1966, the rest was filmed in color.
In the beginning of the show's second season, the show dominated the lot of 20th Century Fox, occupying five sound stages, two major outdoor sets and several minor ones, including the public square with bandstand outside the studio commissary whose exterior doubles as Peyton Place's hospital.
In 1968, African-American characters were added to the cast played by Ruby Dee, Percy Rodrigues, and Glynn Turman. African-American writers were also hired. But writer Gene Boland publicly complained that their ideas were being rewritten and he was fired. Dee's husband, Ossie Davis was hired as a consultant.
Dorothy Malone complained that her role was being overshadowed by the role of co-star Mia Farrow. In 1968, she was written off the show, and she sued 20th Century Fox for breach of contract. The case was settled out of court.

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Photo taken on 15 May 2016 (© classic_film / Flickr)

Related tags :
 1964, sixties, television, peyton place, 1960s, tv, hollywood, celebrity, vintage, classic, clásico, retro, época, ephemeral, entertainment, actress, añejo, actrice, actriz, aktrice

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