Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Richard Chamberlain

There is a treasure trove of material at the Archive of American Television. There's interviews with all sorts of people, in depth and worth the time. The As alone include Edie Adams, Alan Alda and Bea Arthur, to name just a few, plus there's all those other letters of the alphabet. Under C comes a recent interview with the person I will always think of as Dr. Kildare, although many remember him better as Father Ralph in The Thorn Birds, back when TV miniseries were capital E Events.

Says Chamberlain, "The basic premise of The Thornbirds was ‘let’s make the best most high-class tragedy driven soap opera of all time.’ I don’t mean to denigrate it. It was brilliantly done, and brilliantly cast, and a wonderful story, but the absolute top of the heap of pure soap opera I think. I often am surprised when I think about it that it was, and remains so successful because it was one tragedy after another, after another, after another, after another, after another."

Read (and watch) A Conversation with Richard Chamberlain.

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