The Lone Ranger (TV series)

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The Lone Ranger
Lone ranger silver 1965.JPG
FormatWestern
Created byGeorge W. Trendle
Fran Striker
StarringClayton Moore
Jay Silverheels
John Hart
Lane Bradford
Chuck Courtney
John Doucette
Robert Bray
Hank Worden
David McMahon
Narrated byGerald Mohr
Fred Foy
Opening theme"William Tell Overture"
by Gioachino Rossini
Country of originUnited States
No. of seasons5
No. of episodes221 (List of episodes)
Production
Running time22–24 minute
Broadcast
Original channelABC
Picture formatBlack-and-white
(1949–1956)
Color
(1956–1957)
Audio formatMonaural
Original runSeptember 15, 1949 (1949-09-15) – June 6, 1957 (1957-06-06)[1]
 
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The Lone Ranger
Lone ranger silver 1965.JPG
FormatWestern
Created byGeorge W. Trendle
Fran Striker
StarringClayton Moore
Jay Silverheels
John Hart
Lane Bradford
Chuck Courtney
John Doucette
Robert Bray
Hank Worden
David McMahon
Narrated byGerald Mohr
Fred Foy
Opening theme"William Tell Overture"
by Gioachino Rossini
Country of originUnited States
No. of seasons5
No. of episodes221 (List of episodes)
Production
Running time22–24 minute
Broadcast
Original channelABC
Picture formatBlack-and-white
(1949–1956)
Color
(1956–1957)
Audio formatMonaural
Original runSeptember 15, 1949 (1949-09-15) – June 6, 1957 (1957-06-06)[1]

The Lone Ranger is an American western television series that ran from 1949 to 1957, starring Clayton Moore (John Hart from 1952 to 1954) with Jay Silverheels as Tonto. The live-action series initially featured Gerald Mohr as the episode narrator. Fred Foy served as both narrator and announcer of the radio series from 1948 to its finish and became announcer of the television version when story narration was dropped there. This was by far the highest-rated television program on the ABC network in the early 1950s and its first true "hit".[2]

Production[edit]

Although George W. Trendle retained the title of producer, he recognized that his experience in radio would not be adequate for producing the television series. For this, he hired veteran MGM film producer Jack Chertok. Chertok served as the producer for the first 182 episodes as well as for a rarely seen 1955 color special retelling the origin.

The first 78 episodes were produced and broadcast for 78 consecutive weeks without any breaks or reruns. Then the entire 78 episodes were shown again before any new episodes were produced. All were shot in Utah and California. Much of the series was shot at the Iverson Movie Ranch in Chatsworth, California.

When it came time to produce another batch of 52 episodes, there was a wage dispute with Clayton Moore (until his death, the actor insisted the problem was creative differences), and John Hart was hired to play the role of the Lone Ranger.[3] Once again, the 52 new episodes were aired in sequence followed by 52 weeks rerunning them. Despite expectations that the mask would make the switch workable, Hart was not accepted in the role, and his episodes were not seen again until the 1980s.[4][5][6][7]

At the end of the fifth year of the television series, Trendle sold the Lone Ranger rights to Jack Wrather, who bought them on August 3, 1954. Wrather immediately rehired Clayton Moore to play the Lone Ranger and another 52 episodes were produced. Once again, they were broadcast as a full year of new episodes followed by a full year of reruns.

The final season saw a number of changes, the most obvious at the time being an episode count of the by-then industry standard 39. Wrather invested money out of his own pocket to film in color—then-perennial third place finisher ABC telecasting only in black and white—and to go back outdoors for more than just second-unit style action footage, the series having been otherwise restricted to studio sound stages after the first filming block. Another big change, not readily detectable by the viewers, was replacing Jack Chertok with producer Sherman A. Harris. By this time, Chertok had established his own television production company and was busy producing other shows.

Wrather decided not to negotiate further with the network and took the property to the big screen, canceling TV production. The last new episode of the color series was broadcast June 6, 1957, and the series ended September 12, 1957, although ABC reaped the benefits of daytime reruns for several more years. Wrather's company produced two modestly budgeted theatrical features, The Lone Ranger (1956) (the cast included former child actress Bonita Granville, who had by then married Wrather after his divorce from a daughter of former Texas Governor W. Lee O'Daniel) and The Lone Ranger and the Lost City of Gold (1958).

Episodes[edit]

Cast[edit]

Guest stars[edit]

Douglas Kennedy, later cast as Steve Donovan, Western Marshal, appeared in different roles in six episodes of The Lone Ranger from 1952 to 1955.

Tyler MacDuff, who guest-starred in three Lone Ranger episodes from 1953 to 1957, was the only person to say on television both "Who was that masked man?" and "That was the Lone Ranger!"[11]

Ewing Mitchell, later on the Sky King series, appeared twice on The Lone Ranger: as Major in "The Courage of Tonto" and as Tom Bryan in "The Banker's Son" (both 1957)

John M. Pickard appeared in different roles in seven episodes.

Kim Spalding guest-starred in three The Lone Ranger episodes from 1950 to 1953 at the beginning of his short acting career. The character actor I. Stanford Jolley made his first appearances in television westerns in 1950 and over the following three years appeared in six episodes of The Lone Ranger.

Carol Thurston was cast twice, as Beata in "Finders Keepers" (1949) and as Mary Turner in "Masked Deputy" (1950).

Eddy Waller was cast in three episode, including the role of Jules, an elderly transient who resembles a legendary gambler in "Gentleman from Julesburg" (1953).

Frank Wilcox, later the oil executive John Brewster on The Beverly Hillbillies, guest starred in four episodes between 1952 and 1955.

The child actor Michael Winkelman, a regular on The Real McCoys, appeared as Chip Truett in one of the last episodes of the series, on April 4, 1957, "The Prince of Buffalo Gap."[12]

DVD releases[edit]

On March 31, 2009, Mill Creek Entertainment released the box set "Gun Justice featuring The Lone Ranger" with other westerns including Annie Oakley, The Adventures of Kit Carson, The Cisco Kid, Cowboy G-Men, Judge Roy Bean, The Gabby Hayes Show, and The Roy Rogers Show.

On November 11, 2009, a 75th Anniversary edition was released to commemorate the show.[13]

On June 4, 2013, Classic Media will release Lone Ranger - Collectors Edition, a 30-disc set featuring all 221 episodes of the series on DVD for the very first time.[14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Goldstein, Richard (December 29, 1999). "Clayton Moore, Television's Lone Ranger And a Persistent Masked Man, Dies at 85". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-04-25. 
  2. ^ "Clayton Moore, the 'Lone Ranger,' dead at 85". CNN. Retrieved 2009-10-19. 
  3. ^ McLellan, Dennis (1993-06-12). "After 60 Years, the Lone Ranger Still Lives". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-09-27. 
  4. ^ "Clayton Moore, the "Lone Ranger", dead at 85". CNN. Retrieved 2009-10-19. 
  5. ^ Vallance, Tom (1999-12-30). "Obituary: Clayton Moore". The Independent (London). Retrieved 2009-10-19. 
  6. ^ Stassel, Stephanie (1999-12-29). "Clayton Moore, TV's "Lone Ranger", Dies". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2009-10-19. 
  7. ^ "Lone Ranger star dies". BBC. 1999-12-29. Retrieved 2009-10-19. 
  8. ^ McLellan, Dennis (1993-06-09). "A Gathering of Kemo Sabes". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  9. ^ "Who's That Masked Man? Hi-Yo-It's Clayton Moore!". The Los Angeles Times. 1985-01-15. Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  10. ^ McLellan, Dennis. "John Hart dies at 91; the other 'Lone Ranger'". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  11. ^ "Biography for Tyler MacDuff". Internet Movie Data Base. Retrieved 2010-01-09. 
  12. ^ "MichaelWinkelman (1946-1999)". Internet Movie Data Base. Retrieved 2011-08-20. 
  13. ^ "The Lone Ranger - Return with us now to those thrilling days of yesteryear". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Retrieved 2009-10-19. 
  14. ^ "The Lone Ranger DVD news: Package Art for The Lone Ranger - Collector's Edition". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Retrieved 2013-08-19. 

External links[edit]