TV Fact #271 – July 22nd, 2015:

“The Saint” (1962-1969) was clever in how he made it’s stories from the beginning when it was originally a series of novels in the 1920’s. During the writing of the original manuscripts, author Leslie Charteris constantly designated the character Simon Templar (Played by Roger Moore) by his initials (S.T.) in order to save time. That’s how the idea came up to give the character the nickname “the Saint”. But this is about the show, not the books which Moore was fond of.

Moore had earlier tried to buy the production rights to the “Saint” books himself and was delighted to be able to play the part. Moore eventually became co-owner of the show with executive producer Robert S. Baker when the show moved to colour and the production credit became Bamore Productions. In fact, most of the wardrobe Moore wore in the series was his own.said that when filming scenes that were supposed to be in countries where they drove on the other side of the road, they would simply flip the film in the camera. Although, as many know, this show ended up being a warm-up for Moore who would famously play James Bond later in several 007 films.

Moore was reportedly offered the role of 007 at least twice during the run of the series, but had to turn it down both times owing to his television commitments. And they were willing to make fun of it. Early episodes included the gimmick of having Moore speak directly to the audience which was later replaced by narration. And this what’s funny because, in one early episode, an old woman guesses Templar’s name … she says his name must be James Bond.

Whether it was Moore’s passion for the character of Simon Templar or the fun taken in making the series, with almost 120 episodes, the programme is exceeded only by “The Avengers” (1961-1969) as the most productive show of its genre produced in the UK.

Published in: on July 24, 2015 at 9:32 PM  Leave a Comment  

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