CTVA US Anthology - "Playwrights '56" (NBC)(1955-56)

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Armstrong Circle Theatre (NBC 1950-57)(30/60 min)/ (CBS 1957-63)(60 min) Dramatic Anthology

Playwrights '56

aka "The Playwright Hour",  Pontiac Playhouse, Pontiac Presents Playwrights '56

Sponsors  -  Pontiac

Episode Guide compiled by The Classic TV Archive
http://ctva.biz/index.htm

with contributions by: Tom Alger, Rina Fox
references:
Library of Congress (telnet://locis.loc.gov)
Internet Movie Database (http://us.imdb.com)
UCLA Film and Television Archive

 

PLAYWRIGHTS '56

NBC

Producer: Fred Coe

Directors: Arthur Penn, Vincent J. Donohue

 

US Dramatic Anthology series  1955-56   20 episodes x 60 min "live"   (4Oct55-19Jun56)
 

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############## Playwrights '56 #############

############ season 1 1955-56 ############

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NBC Tuesdays   9:30-10:30pm      (4Oct55-19Jun56)

Live plays on alternate Tuesdays with  season 7 of Armstrong Circle Theatre

1.01  Playwrights '56: THE ANSWER

04Oct1955

Producer Fred Coe

Written by David Davidson & David Shaw

Based on the novel by Philip Wylie

Directed by Delbert Mann

Guest cast:

Paul Douglas ....... General Marcus Scott

Nina Foch ....... Mrs. Scott

Walter Abel ....... Dr. Harmon

Albert Dekker ........ Major Tobey

Conrad Nagel ........ Mr. President

Truman Smith ....... Press Secretary

Russell Hicks ......... General Riller

Synopsis:
An Army General investigates an accident at an atomic bomb test area.

 

1.02  Playwrights '56: THE BATTLER

18Oct1955

Producer Fred Coe

Written by A.E. Hotchner & Sidney Carroll

Based on the novel by Ernest Hemingway

Directed by Arthur Penn

Guest cast:

Phyllis Kirk ....... Girl Friend

Paul Newman ....... the Battler

Dewey Martin ....... Nick

Frederick O'Neal ....... Bugs

Marty Green ...... Counterman

Richard Collier ....... Truck Driver

Irving Mitchell ....... Breakman

William McLean ....... Jailor
Ben Miller ........... Tough

Synopsis 1:

A young man traveling by freight train is kicked off by the brakeman.

He encounters another man named Ad Francis a former well known fighter.

Both men have their own demons to fight before they can move on. [RF]

Synopsis 2:

A young man who goes "on the bum," encountering a number of strange characters,

 including a crooked truck driver, a cruel cafe owner and a crazed boxer. [TA]
* Note: James Dean was to appear in this role but his death gave way to Paul Newman.

 

1.03 Playwrights '56: THE HEART'S A FORGOTTEN HOTEL

25Oct1955

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Arnold Schulman

Guest cast:

Edmond O'Brien ........ Sidney

Sylvia Sidney ........ Sophie

Paul Hartman ....... Mac

Clifford Tatum Jr. ........ Allie

Arleen Whelan ........ Shirl

Synopsis:
A tragic relationship between a father and his 14-year-old son come

 to a head with the father's childish behavior.

 

1.04 Playwrights '56: SNOW JOB

08Nov1955

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Richard Turner

Guest cast:

James Gregory ....... Father

Joan Blondell ....... Mother

Charles Taylor ....... Richard

Gene Saks ....... Mr. Baumgarten

Jane Hoffman ....... Gert

Meg Mundy ....... Miss Stroud

Robert Gibbons ....... Cop

James Reese ....... Dr. Jones

Chris Barbery ........ Bertram
Arthur Sussman ....... Gabriel Moriarty

Synopsis:
The romantic wife of a New York doorman is torn by the problems of life: whether

or not to go to the movies or buy a fan magazine; why her husband can't afford an

air conditioner like her friend's and last but not least, why her son, of all children,

 has to be a juvenile delinquent. [RF]

 

1.05 Playwrights 56: DAISY! DAISY!
22Nov1955
Producer Fred Coe
Written by Sumner Locke Elliott
Guest cast:
Jane Wyatt ........... Glenda Bingham
Tom Ewell ............ William Bingham
James Reese .......... Adrian Terhune
Al Checco ............ Trigger Fogel
Lou Vernon ........... Mr. Smith
Edith Meiser ......... Mother-in-Law
Agnes Doyle .......... Mrs. Mays
Jane Moultrie ........ Rosy Sedgewick
Synopsis:
A down and out writer submits his book after eight years of hard work

only to be turned down by the publisher. Disappointed he writes another

book in eight hours and signs the manuscript Daisy Smith, the publishers

 publish the book and it becomes a best seller.

1.06 Playwrights 56: THE SOUND AND THE FURY
05Dec1955
Producer Fred Coe
Adapted by William Durkee
Based on the novel by William Faulkner
Directed by Vincent J. Donehue
Guest cast:
Franchot Tone ........ Jason
Janice Rule .......... Quentin
Ethel Waters ......... Dilsey
Lillian Gish ......... Mrs. Compson
Steven Hill .......... Stobin
Valerie Bettis ....... Candance
Elsa Clark ........... Luster
Synopsis:
A Southern family faces new challenges as their once successful stature as

wealthy land and slave owners have disintegrated to the point that only

 the Black housekeeper is the solid foundation of the family.

 

1.07 Playwrights '56: THE WAITING PLACE

20Dec1955

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Tad Mosel

Directed by Arthur Penn

Guest cast:

Kim Stanley ....... Abby

Jack Mullaney ...... Cougar

Louis Jean Heydt ....... Malcolm

Louise Platt ....... Eva

Dorrit Kelton ....... Mama Page

Synopsis:
A girl fantasizes about a young gypsy boy.

 

1.08 Playwrights '56: THE DAY THE TRAINS STOPPED RUNNING

03Jan56

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Harry Ridgley

Directed by Vincent J. Donehue
Set Design by Otis Riggs

Guest cast:

Joseph Sweeney ........ Sam Rascher

Elizabeth Patterson ...... Matty Rascher

Frank Overton ....... Will Thompson

Karl Swenson ....... Sy Crandell

Mary Welch ....... Thelma

Cliff Hall ...... Mac

Dan Frazer ...... Sailor

Joanne Douglas ....... Woman

George Ebeling ....... Taxi Driver

Synopsis:
A retired railroad worker finds retirement dull and spends more time at

the train yard with threats of arrest for constantly disrupting service.

 

1.09 Playwrights '56: LOST

17Jan1956

Producer Fred Coe

Adapted by Arnold Schulman
From a story by Berton Roueche

Directed by Arthur Penn

Guest cast:

Steven Hill .......... Walter Uhlan
Sally Gracie ......... Arlene
Vivian Nathan ........ Mildred
Katherine Squire ..... Rita
Frank Campanella ..... Taxi Driver
Frank London ......... Johnny
Sada Thompson ........ Nurse
Victor Thorley
Anne Hegira
Chris Gampel
Fred Herrick
Joe Verdi
Allen Leaf
Dotts Johnson
Ace Adams
Joe Bernard
David Picken
Synopsis:
A man finds himself in New York City with no idea who he is or why he is there.

 Through the device of a chorus made up of friends and relatives viewers

learn the answers to these questions, but the man himself must go

 through an agonizing period in the limbo of amnesia. [RF]
 

1.10 Playwrights '56: THIS BUSINESS OF MURDER

31Jan1956

Producer Fred Coe

Written by David Swift

Guest cast:

James Whitmore ....... David
E.G. Marshall ........ Saul
Thomas Gomez ......... Ivan
Warren Stevens ....... Elliot
Henry Jones .......... Oliver
David White .......... Clarence

Synopsis:
The head of a supermarket chain invites a group of business associates

 to his home. Among them are the men competing for his frozen food business.

 The tycoon plans to judge the men, but violence takes over. [RF]
 

1.11 Playwrights '56: RETURN TO CASSINO

14Feb1956

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Mann Rubin

Guest cast:

John Forsythe ........ Joe Neville
Kurt Kasznar ......... Professor Gersohn
Dina Merrill ......... Mrs. Neville
James Lacirignnola ... Rudd Gersohn
Danny Dennis ......... Mark Neville
Silvio Minciotti ..... Hotel Proprietor
Synopsis:
An American brings his family to Italy to revisit the World War 2 battlefield

where he fought and where his older brother died. There he meets the

German doctor, now a professor, who had refused to operate on the

 dying brother because he lacked anesthetics. [RF]
 

1.12 Playwrights '56: FLIGHT

28Feb1956

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Horton Foote

Directed by Vincent J. Donehue
Set Design by Russell Scott
Guest cast:

Kim Stanley ........ Martha Anderson

Ruth Hussey .......... Mrs. Anderson

Albert Dekker ....... Mr. Anderson

Barbara Barrie ........ Verna Anderson

Alice Ghostley ......... Mrs. Hope

Evelyn Ellis ....... Bessie

Alonzo Bosan ....... Porter
Synopsis:

To all outward appearances, the Andersons lead a quiet, happy life in a small Texas town.

But inner tensions and conflicts are brought to the surface by the elder daughter's

decision to marry a man her father disapproves of. [RF]

 

1.13 Playwrights '56: ADAM AND EVENING

13Mar1956

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Arnold Schulman

Directed by Arthur Penn

Music by Herbie Mann

Guest cast:
Nehemiah Persoff ..... Adam
Estelle Winwood ...... Mrs. Coleman
Lori March ........... Girl
Rudy Bond ............ Jerry
Sid Armus ............ Mike
Allen Leaf ........... Ben
John Becher .......... Mr. Salsbury
Ian Tucker ........... Boy
Johanna Douglas ...... Mother
Synopsis:
Adam is a lonely, middle-aged widower constantly made fun of by his fellow workers.

 Afraid to face people, he has withdrawn so much from society that his only friend is his pet cat. [RF]
 

1.14 Playwrights '56: THE UNDISCOVERED COUNTRY

27Mar56

Producer Fred Coe

Written by J.P. Miller
Guest cast:
Cyril Ritchard ....... Royce Thurmond
Nina Foch ............ Belle Thurmond
Vivi Janiss .......... Annie Gubbage
Tommy Cook ........... Frank Gubbage
George Chandler ...... Lou Berg
Charlotte Knight ..... Mother Gubbage
J. Pat O'Malley ...... Doc Phelps
Frederick O'Neal ..... Boots
Arthur Malet ......... Preacher
Synopsis:
Royce Thurmond, a gentleman farmer, sits alone in his Connecticut home

and ponders his fate. His daughter has left him, his handyman has quit and

even his dog has disappeared. And all because he was directed to tell the

 truth by the last will and testament of the town loafer! [RF]
 

1.15 Playwrights '56: YOU AND ME AND THE GATEPOST

10Apr1956

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Sumner Locke Elliott

Directed by Delbert Mann

Music by Harry Sosnik

Guest cast:

Mary Astor ........... Georgina
George Grizzard ...... Brad Taylor
Patricia Smith ....... Marie
John Emory ........... Binky Waldron
Paula Lawrence ....... Jane Widdy
Arlene Francis
Synopsis:
Through narration and flashback, we learn what happened to Georgina,

 a rather wealthy widow. Georgina makes a habit of befriending artists who

can't make a living from their art. One day a young would-be playwright enters

this charmed circle and at once becomes Georgina's project of the moment. [RF]
 

1.16 Playwrights '56: THE CENTER OF THE MAZE

24Apr1956

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Sam Hall

Guest cast:

Dina Merrill ........ Sarah

Ann Harding ........ Augusta

Peter Mark Richman ........ Jim

J. Pat O'Malley ........ MacLeod

William Hansen ........ Parker

Gina Petrushka ........ Jarey

Gene Saks ......... Doctor

Synopsis:
A popular society woman is caught in a crisis when

 her daughter wants to marry a gardener.

 

1.17 Playwrights '56: YOU SOMETIMES GET RICH

08May1956

Producer Fred Coe

Written by A. E. Hotchner

Guest cast:

Larry Blyden ....... Sergeant Barney Bender

Tom Poston ........ Fletcher

Bert Remsen ........ Hank

Joe Silver ........ Berway

Gene Saks ......... Emcee

Synopsis:
Sgt. Barney Bender learns the down side of riches and fame after

winning big on the TV quiz show "The $74,000" Question.

 

1.18 Playwrights '56: KEYHOLE

22May1956

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Sumner Locke Elliott

Guest cast:

Lee Grant ........ Helen Cartwright

Patrick Macnee ......... Guy Cartwright

E.G. Marshall ......... Mr. X

Meg Mundy ........... Louise Lang

Geoffrey Toone .......... Robert Cartwright

Maureen Hurley ....... Ivy Rumble

John Sutton ........ Mr. Black

Norman Barrs .......... Mr. White

Harry McNaughton ........ Judge

Marie Paxton .......... Nurse Potts

Synopsis:
In this courtroom drama, a defense act allows the defendant

to testify under oath at their own trial.

 

1.19 Playwrights '56: NICK AND LETTY

05Jun1956

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Nelson Gidding

Based on the novel by Lonnie Colman

Guest cast:

Robert Culp ......... Clint

Nancy Walker ........ Letty Bern

Mary Fickett .......... Ernestine Grant

Norman Fell ....... Nick Zervas

Jack Weston .......... Pearlman

Sidney Armus .......... Rister

Joyce Smight ........... Sally

Tony Travis ........... Singer

Synopsis:
A nurse stationed aboard a World War II Army Cargo ship

 teams up with a fellow officer who also is a social outcast.

 

1.20 [--] Playwrights '56: HONOR

19Jun1956

Producer Fred Coe

Written by Gore Vidal

Directed by Vincent J. Donehue
Set Designer R. Wightman

Guest cast:

Ralph Bellamy ........ John Hinks

Dick York ......... Grayson

Katherine Squire ....... Minna

Frieda Holloway ......... Amelia

Glenn Cannon ........ Aaron

Paul McGrath ......... Sudleigh

Michael Strong ......... Colonel

Carol Goodner ............ Mrs. Blair

Joseph Sullivan ......... Yankee Sergeant

Synopsis:
A man must choose between honor and money,

a choice he finds distasteful to make.
 

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