Schlitz Playhouse of Stars

CBS (ended 1959)
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  • show Description
  • For eight seasons this dramatic anthology series was sponsored by Joseph Schlitz Brewing Company. At first, the series was an hour long and performed from New York City. Midway during the first season (4/4/1952), the length was reduced to a half hour. Following the pattern of practically all early TV, "Schlitz" was performed live but converted to filmed episodes beginning with "A Quarter for Your Troubles" during Season 1 on 5/30/52. This episode also corresponded with a move to Hollywood and Irene Dunne being installed as host. Dunn would open each episode with a brief sketch that tied into that evening's story. Her tenure as host was short-lived; she was gone by the end of November as the introductions were regarded as embarrassing for a star of her stature. After that, the star of that week's story would provide a brief introduction. The series went through several hosts, including James Mason (1954-1955), Otto Kruger (1956), and Gordon MacRae (1957). During the series final three summers, Ken Carpenter acted as host. "Schlitz" aired exclusively on Friday nights during its run. In the final season, it converted to an alternate week program, rotating with "Lux Playhouse". Two episodes acted as pilots for later series: "The Restless Gun" starring John Payne and "A Tale of Wells Fargo" starring Dale Robertson.moreless

  • Episode Guide
  • S 8 : Ep 13

    Ivy League

    Aired 3/13/59

  • S 8 : Ep 12

    On the Brink

    Aired 2/27/59

  • S 8 : Ep 11

    The Man Who Had No Friends

    Aired 2/13/59

  • S 8 : Ep 10

    And Practically Strangers

    Aired 1/30/59

  • S 8 : Ep 9

    You Can't Win 'Em All

    Aired 1/16/59

  • Cast & Crew
  • James Mason

    Host (1954-1955 )

  • Ken Carpenter

    Host (Summers 1955-1957)

  • Otto Kruger

    Host (1956)

  • Gordon MacRae

    Host (1957)

  • Irene Dunne

    Host (1952)

  • Top Contributor
  • jaynashvil

    User Score: 3519


  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (1)

    • William Lundigan acts in this episode as well as performing as host.

    Notes (50)

    • This episode was based on an installment of the series "Smugglers Were My Quarry" that ran in The Saturday Evening Post. The series was written by Edson J. Shamhart, a retired Customs Deputy Commissioner.

    • Rosalind Russell would later star in the 1953 film version of this story.

    • Charles Nolte portrayed the title character of Billy Budd during its Broadway run (2/10/51-5/12/51).

    • This teleplay is based on the Herman Melville novella Billy Budd, published posthumously in 1924.

    • Professional referee Ray Miller plays the referee and several reporters (Murray Rose, Lou Effrat, Frank Eek) are played by real journalists.

    • This musical comedy features the tunes of songwriter Arthur Schwartz.

    • Diana Lynn, an actual pianist, plays "Romantic Rhapsody" by Herbert Mayer, premiered in 1950 by the Boston Symphony.

    • Beginning with this episode, the series is reduced from an hour to a half-hour program. Taking over the open thirty minutes is It's News to Me hosted by John Daly.

    Show More Notes

    Trivia (3)

    • Michael O'Shea performs in this episode and acts as the episode's host.

    • Ronald Reagan appears both as an actor and as host for this episode.

    • John Payne would go on to star in his own television seriesĀ also titled The Restless Gun which began airing in September 1957.

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