TV Fact #248 – June 29th, 2015:

Since we spoke about the 1994 film “Maverick” for the Movie Fact for tonight, why not now speak of the series from which it was based off of. For this I introduce you to the show “Maverick” (1957-1962), a show you’d think be serious, dealing with the suppose first TV anti-hero Bret Maverick (Played by James Garner), but alas found comedy in itself which was shown in various facts about the show.

Garner claimed that during filming one day they had less than an hour until overtime would have to be paid. However, within this hour they still needed to shoot a complicated fight scene. So, spying a group of tall weeds, Garner suggested that he throw his opponent into the weeds and have the fight proceed with much shaking of the weeds, and people being ejected from the weeds, only to immediately run back in. The results were extremely funny, and thus the cast and crew began to look for “funny” ways to cut corners. This lent in turning the show into a semi-comedy. Also, producer Roy Huggins stated the writers’ guiding principle for the Maverick series was his belief that, as he quoted, “In the traditional Western, the situation was always serious but never hopeless. In a ‘Maverick’ story, the situation is always hopeless but never serious.” Let’s be honest though, this show had some really spirit to it…even going as far as to inventing a move years before a famous boxer supposedly did it.

That’s right folks, several years before legendary boxer Muhammad Ali made it famous in real life, during season one the character Bret competed in a boxing match and used the “rope-a-dope” strategy. For those unfamiliar, this meant letting the other fighter tire himself out and them coming back to beat him.

Whether the show was comedic or original, it was a series that was so popular it got a film adaptation made that was directed by Richard Donner, who directed such major films as “Superman: The Movie” in 1978 and “Lethal Weapon” from 1987-1998. One that would be nominated for Academy Award for Best Costume Design  for costumer designer April Ferry. We’re talking about a classic series so let’s use a classic line…the series was a winning hand.

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Published in: on June 30, 2015 at 1:06 AM  Leave a Comment  

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