|REX STOUT ON TV
Also see John J. McAleer's article from his Rex Stout Journal regarding Mr. Stout and the Media.
Omnibus, "The Fine Art of Murder" (ABC)
Rex Stout appeared in the December 9, 1956, episode of Omnibus
, a cultural anthology series that epitomized the golden age of television. Hosted by Alistair Cooke
, "The Fine Art of Murder" was a 40-minute segment described by Time magazine as "a homicide as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
, Edgar Allan Poe
[and] Rex Stout
would variously present it."
The author is credited as appearing along with Gene Reynolds
(Archie Goodwin), Robert Echols (Nero Wolfe), James Daly (narrator), Jack Sydow and Dennis Hoey (Arthur Conan Doyle).
Written by Sidney Carroll and directed by Paul Bogart, "The Fine Art of Murder" is in the collection of the Library of Congress (VBE 2397-2398).
Book Beat, An Interview with Rex Stout, CETV
In 1972 Chicago's Educational Television (CETV) (later to become PBS?) aired an interview with Rex Stout.
"First Prize of Murder" (Studio One episode)
Broadcast on September 16, 1957 as an episode of the anthology series Studio One. Based on an idea by John D. MacDonald (of Travis McGee fame, among many other books), adapted by Phil Reisman, Jr.
Starring Darren McGavin, Philip Coolidge, Barbara O'Neil, Ross Martin, Colleen Dewhurst, Jonathan Harris, Larry Hagman and Peter Falk. Featuring (as themselves) mystery writers Rex Stout
, Brett Halliday, Frances & Richard Lockridge, Georges Simenon and George Harmon Coxe.
The Baker Street Irregulars and Rex Stout
The TV Guide for February 3,1957 describes an "Odyssey"program that aired at 4:00 p.m. on CBS that would interest Sherlockians as well as Wolfeans.
"All of today's show is devoted to Sherlock Holmes. Though most people regard Holmes as a merely fictional detective, the creation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the Baker Street Irregulars look at things differently. It's a dogma of the Irregulars that Holmes was, in fact is, a real person, that furthermore Dr. Watson was his actual chronicler, and that Conan Doyle simply acted as an agent for Watson. Today's 'Odyssey' program opens with a film of the annual meeting of the Irregulars in New York City last month where Holmes's 103rd birthday was toasted. "
The climax of this meeting comes in a speech by mystery writer Rex Stout, creator of Nero Wolfe. Stout 'reveals' his discovery that an affair of the heart actually took Holmes to New York City during the 1890s and that it was in Brooklyn, not in London, that Holmes studied his celebrated case of 'The Red Headed League.' The one hour program concludes with a full-length live dramatization of this case as it 'actually' took place on this side of the Atlantic.
"Aiding Stout in digging up the facts about Holmes's clandestine visit to our shores are three Irregulars: Dr. Richard Hoffmann, New York psychiatrist; Edgar Smith, retired auto-company executive; and Red Smith, syndicated sports columnist.
"To enhance the 1890s atmosphere there will be films of little-known still photographs of the New York of the day and of the city's police force, to which Holmes gave his help in solving the 'crime.' David Eban wrote today's script. Charles Collingwood is host."
TV Guide concluded the entry with the cast. Holmes was played by Michael Clarke Laurence. Wilson by Donald Marye. Harry Gresham portrayed the remaining member of the three-man cast, Hargreave.
Lady Against the Odds (NBC)
Stout's 1937 novel The Hand in the Glove
was adapted for an NBC TV movie titled Lady Against the Odds
, which aired April 20, 1992. Crystal Bernard
starred as Dol Bonner; Annabeth Gish
co-starred as Sylvia Raffray. Bradford May, who also directed, received an Emmy Award for outstanding individual achievement in cinematography.
(Aired in 1979)
for 1981 TV Series
Click here to view a page devoted to the 1981 William Conrad Series
In 1977, Thayer David and Tom Mason starred in a made-for-tv movie based on The Doorbell Rang
, intended as the pilot episode for a television series. Very soon after the pilot was completed, Thayer David died. The pilot show was telecast in 1979.
The 1981 series with William Conrad and Lee Horsley was eventually made rather quickly.
as Wolfe in Meet Nero Wolfe
William Connolly as Nero Wolfe in League of Frightened Men
Rex Stout authorized two movies in 1936 and 1937, respectively. He never again sold movie rights to his books.
Meet Nero Wolfe (1936) starred Edward Arnold and Lionel Stander and was loosely based on Fer-de-Lance.
In 1937, Columbia made a second (and final) Wolfe movie, The League of Frightened Men, starring Walter Connolly as Wolfe and Stander returning as Archie Goodwin.
If you ever get a chance to see these movies, it's worth the annoyances. Stander, for instance, has a thick "Brooklyn" accent. He is more "recently" remembered as the gravely-voiced Max in the TV series Hart to Hart with Robert Wagner. In Meet Nero Wolfe, Archie has a "ding-bat"wife, played by Rita Hayworth (but listed in the credits under her birth name) in her first movie. The plots are almost unrecognizable from those of the books.
SCREEN CAPTURES FROM MEET NERO WOLFE
SCREEN CAPTURES FROM LEAGUE OF FRIGHTENED MEN
Dick Lochte recounts an interview he conducted with Rex Stout, in which Mr. Stout talked about casting for his books and the two movies made in the 1930s.
NY TIMES REVIEW OF MEET NERO WOLFE
The President Vanishes (Paramount)
In an interview printed in Royal Decree (1983), Rex Stout's official biographer John McAleer asked the author if there was any chance of Hollywood ever making a good Nero Wolfe movie. "I don't know," Stout replied. "I suppose so. They made a movie of another story I wrote — The President Vanishes. I hate like hell to admit it but it was better than the book, I think."
Rex Stout's anonymous 1934 novel was quickly transformed into a feature film by Paramount Pictures. The President Vanishes (1934, British title Strange Conspiracy) was produced by Walter Wanger and directed by William A. Wellman, and featured a cast that includes Arthur Byron, Edward Arnold, Rosalind Russell and Andy Devine. See IMDB for further information. It was premiered, November 1935 and released in January 1936.
On February 28, 2012, it was shown as part of the William A. Wellman Film Festival at the NYC Film Forum.
Click above to see an enlargement
of this NBC picture for the promotion
of the radio series.
Francis X. Bushman
Mavor Moore and Don Francks
An excellent summary of the radio shows is at: http://www.old-time.com/otrlogs2/nero_sh.html
In 1943, 1946, and 1950-1951 Nero Wolfe was aired on radio. Sidney Greenstreet played Nero Wolfe in the later series. The two earlier series have only one episode each available. A variety of actors played Archie Goodwin. In 1982 CBC radio in Canada broadcast a Nero Wolfe Series.
1943 Series: "THE ADVENTURES OF NERO WOLFE" (one episode)
NETWORK: NBC, SPONSOR: JERGENS LOTION, STARS: Santos Ortego (Wolfe), Elliott Lewis (Part of "MYSTERY PLAYHOUSE" with Peter Lorrie)
1946 Series: "THE AMAZING NERO WOLFE" (one episode)
NETWORK: ABC, SPONSOR: JERGENS LOTION; TIME: Sunday 8:00pm
STARS: Francis X. Bushman (as Wolfe), Elliott Lewis [Francis Bushman was an extremely famous silent film star.]
1950 -- 1951 Series: "THE NEW ADVENTURES OF NERO WOLFE"
NETWORK: NBC, SPONSOR: SUSTAINED, TIME: Fridays: 8:00 - 8:30 PM
(Click image to see an enlargement of the LP.)
STARS: Sidney Greenstreet as Nero Wolfe. Archie played by various actors
WRITER: Louis Vittes based on the stories by Rex Stout; ANNOUNCER: Don Stanley; PRODUCER: Edwin Fadiman; DIRECTOR: J. Donald Wilson.
The above are available on a CD in MP3 format ($5.00 for the one CD) from otrcat.com or from otrsite.com on cassette ($6.00 per episode). You can listen free online at this and a number of other sites: http://www.radiolovers.com/pages/nerowolfe.htm.
1982 Canadian Radio Series starring Mavor Moore as Wolfe and Don Francks as Goodwin
Thirteen Episodes aired on CBC. Twelve can be purchased at otrnow.com.These shows actually follow the plot of the books and are to a great extent a reading of the books.
There are many online sites where you can either download the MP3 format of the audio for free or purchase a CD/DVD of the shows in MP3 format. Do a Google Search for either "Nero Wolfe OTR free download" or "Nero Wolfe OTR purchase." Be sure to use the quotation marks for best results.
|Record Album Label
OK -- So it's a 70s/80s bootleg operation for a U2 Rock Concert (audio) using our intrepid sleuth as the label monicker.
Here are the front/back of a U2 record album under Nero Wolfe label. The album, "Into the Heart" was apparently created from an illicit recording of a concert at the London Lyceum Theater 12/20/1981.
Mixed and mastered at the "Wolfe ????" Studios
Cover Art: Archie & Goodwin
Assistant engineer: ???
Special Thanks to: ?????
Nero Wolfe Records 918 35th Street West, New York City, N.Y. 10001