I was very happy to hear that so many of you enjoyed the second issue. Like I said last time, it sure is a barrel of fun sharing with you my fondest memories from the making of F Troop.
We filmed the pilot during Christmas, 1964. Then, in January we found out that ABC had bought F Troop and that we were in the fall line-up. The show would air on Tuesday nights at 7:30 PM. After we made the pilot, I think all of us were pretty darn sure that F Troop would sell to a network. ABC, at that time, was the smallest of the three networks. We were a little 30-minute Western comedy show, soon to be known across the country.
Our sponsor was to be General Mills, which made Purina dog and cat food and Quaker Oats breakfast cereal. I have a tape of one of the dog food commercials that Larry Storch and Forrest Tucker made for our sponsor. It was shot on the set of the Hekawi Indian village during the first show, “The Girl from Philadelphia”. This commercial was filmed in black and white, as was the first season of F Troop.
We were put “on hold” for four months by Warner Bros. Studio after the filming of the pilot show, “The Scourge of the West”. Because I had signed a personal seven-year contract with Jack Warner, I was kept plenty busy during the months of waiting for the show to begin shooting. The first thing the studio had me do was take riding lessons for two hours in the morning and two hours in the afternoon. It was one thing to be able to stay on a horse for a quick shot but it was quite another to really be able to ride well on the show. I was also taught how to shoot my Colt .45 and draw quickly from my holster……………………………………………………………….
(You can read the rest of the article soon on Melody’s Web Site)