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FOUR STAR PLAYHOUSE is an American television anthology series that ran from 1952 to 1956. Four Star Playhouse
Four Star Playhouse
was owned by Four Star International . Its episodes ranged anywhere from surreal mysteries, such as "The Man on the Train," to light comedies, such as "The Lost Silk Hat." The original premise was that Charles Boyer
Charles Boyer
, Ida Lupino
Ida Lupino
, David Niven
David Niven
, and Dick Powell
Dick Powell
would take turns starring in episodes. However, several other performers took the lead from time to time, including Ronald Colman
Ronald Colman
and Joan Fontaine
Joan Fontaine
.

The show was sponsored in its first bi-weekly season by The Singer Company . Bristol-Myers became an alternate sponsor when it became a weekly series in the fall of 1953 (both sponsors' names alternated as part of the show's title in its initial broadcasts).

While it never made the Nielsen Top 30, the ratings were sufficient to keep it on the air for four seasons. In 1954, Billboard voted it the second best filmed network television drama series.

CONTENTS

* 1 Cast

* 2 Production

* 2.1 Directors * 2.2 Writers

* 3 References * 4 External links

CAST

While Charles Boyer, Ida Lupino, David Niven, and Dick Powell
Dick Powell
are the four main stars of the series, many other actors have appeared in different roles in more than one episode, including:

* Herb Vigran
Herb Vigran
(15 episodes, 1952-1956) * Regis Toomey (8 episodes, 1952-1956) * Ralph Moody (7 episodes, 1953-1956) * Robert Bice (7 episodes, 1954-1956) * Ray Walker (6 episodes, 1952-1956) * Christopher Dark (6 episodes, 1955-1956) * Richard Hale
Richard Hale
(6 episodes, 1953-1956) * Rhys Williams (6 episodes, 1952-1955) * Joan Camden (5 episodes, 1953-1955) * Alan Mowbray
Alan Mowbray
(5 episodes, 1955-1956) * Richard Reeves (5 episodes, 1953-1955) * William Forrest (5 episodes, 1953-1955) * Dorothy Green (4 episodes, 1953-1956) * Gene Hardy (4 episodes, 1953-1956) * Ronald Colman
Ronald Colman
(4 episodes, 1952-1954) * Merle Oberon
Merle Oberon
(4 episodes, 1953-1955) * Beverly Garland
Beverly Garland
(4 episodes, 1954-1956) * Nestor Paiva (4 episodes, 1953-1955) * Berry Kroeger
Berry Kroeger
(4 episodes, 1955-1956) * Joseph Waring (4 episodes, 1954-1956) * Walter Sande
Walter Sande
(4 episodes, 1952-1956) * Walter Kingsford (4 episodes, 1953-1956) * Hugh Beaumont (4 episodes, 1954-1956) * Walter Coy (4 episodes, 1955-1956) * Lewis Martin (4 episodes, 1954-1956) * John Harmon (4 episodes, 1953-1954) * John Doucette
John Doucette
(4 episodes, 1954-1955) * Alex Frazer (4 episodes, 1953-1956) * William F. Leicester (4 episodes, 1952-1955) * Sam Flint (4 episodes, 1954-1955) * Brooks Benedict (4 episodes, 1952-1956) * Barbara Lawrence
Barbara Lawrence
(4 episodes, 1953-1956) * Frank Lovejoy (3 episodes, 1953-1956) * Joanne Woodward
Joanne Woodward
(3 episodes, 1954-1956) * Jeanette Nolan
Jeanette Nolan
(3 episodes, 1953-1956) * Jean Howell (3 episodes, 1953-1955) * Dick Foran (3 episodes, 1954-1955) * James Seay (3 episodes, 1953-1956) * Lawrence Dobkin
Lawrence Dobkin
(3 episodes, 1953-1955) * Arthur Space (3 episodes, 1954-1956) * Morris Ankrum
Morris Ankrum
(3 episodes, 1955-1956) * Craig Stevens (3 episodes, 1953-1956) * Joan Banks (3 episodes, 1953-1954) * Ted Stanhope (3 episodes, 1954) * Paul Bryar (3 episodes, 1954-1956) * Herbert Lytton (3 episodes, 1954-1956) * Noreen Nash (3 episodes, 1952-1955) * Jean Willes
Jean Willes
(3 episodes, 1953-1955) * Frances Rafferty
Frances Rafferty
(3 episodes, 1953-1954) * Jay Novello (3 episodes, 1952-1955) * Howard McNear
Howard McNear
(3 episodes, 1952-1955) * Chuck Connors
Chuck Connors
(3 episodes, 1954-1955) * Edward Platt (3 episodes, 1954-1955) * Harry Bartell (3 episodes, 1953-1956) * John Hoyt
John Hoyt
(3 episodes, 1954-1956) * Frank J. Scannell (3 episodes, 1954-1956) * George Macready (3 episodes, 1952-1954) * Don Shelton (3 episodes, 1954-1956) * William Boyett (3 episodes, 1952-1955) * Leonard Bremen (3 episodes, 1953-1954) * John Alvin (3 episodes, 1953-1954) * Claire Carleton (3 episodes, 1952-1954) * Ross Elliott (3 episodes, 1954-1956) * John Dehner
John Dehner
(3 episodes, 1954-1955) * Hugh Sanders (3 episodes, 1954-1955) * Alexander Campbell (3 episodes, 1955-1956) * Norbert Schiller (3 episodes, 1955-1956) * Nolan Leary (3 episodes, 1956) * Joan Fontaine
Joan Fontaine
(2 episodes, 1953-1955) * Virginia Grey (2 episodes, 1952-1954) * James Millican (2 episodes, 1953) * Beverly Washburn
Beverly Washburn
(2 episodes, 1954-1956) * Elisabeth Fraser (2 episodes, 1953) * Maxine Cooper (2 episodes, 1956) * Steven Geray (2 episodes, 1955) * Tris Coffin (2 episodes, 1955-1956) * Willis Bouchey (2 episodes, 1954-1956) * Larry J. Blake (2 episodes, 1953-1954) * Ellen Corby (2 episodes, 1953-1954) * Alix Talton (2 episodes, 1953) * Harry Lauter (2 episodes, 1956) * Virginia Christine (2 episodes, 1953-1954) * Ralph Peters (2 episodes, 1954-1956) * Anthony Eustrel (2 episodes, 1954-1955) * Irene Tedrow (2 episodes, 1955-1956) * Tim Graham (2 episodes, 1955-1956) * William Swan (2 episodes, 1956) * Nick Dennis (2 episodes, 1953-1956) * Lucille Barkley (2 episodes, 1953) * Gloria Marshall (2 episodes, 1954-1956) * Jimmy Baird (2 episodes, 1955) * Frank Gerstle (2 episodes, 1953-1954) * Jack Lomas (2 episodes, 1954) * Jeanne Ferguson (2 episodes, 1956) * Tony Dante (2 episodes, 1956) * Martha Hyer (2 episodes, 1953-1954) * Angela Lansbury
Angela Lansbury
(2 episodes, 1954-1955) * Marguerite Chapman
Marguerite Chapman
(2 episodes, 1954) * Vera Miles (2 episodes, 1954) * Hillary Brooke (2 episodes, 1952-1953) * Stacy Harris
Stacy Harris
(2 episodes, 1953-1956) * Barbara Billingsley (2 episodes, 1953-1955) * Hal Baylor (2 episodes, 1954-1955) * Paul Picerni
Paul Picerni
(2 episodes, 1954-1955) * Robert J. Wilke (2 episodes, 1954-1955)

PRODUCTION

Blake Edwards
Blake Edwards
was among the writers and directors who contributed to the series, making his debut as a director on the program in 1952. Edwards created the recurring character (eight episodes) of illegal gambling house operator Willie Dante for Dick Powell
Dick Powell
to play on this series. The character was later revamped and spun off in his own series starring Howard Duff , then-husband of Lupino.

The pilot for Meet McGraw , starring Frank Lovejoy , aired here (under that title, February 25, 1954), as did another episode in which Lovejoy recreated his role of Chicago newspaper reporter Randy Stone, from the radio drama Nightbeat (titled "Search in the Night", November 5, 1953).

DIRECTORS

Directors who worked on the show include:

* Roy Kellino in 41 episodes (1953-1956) * Robert Florey in 31 episodes (1952-1956) * Richard Kinon in 7 episodes (1956) * Robert Aldrich in 5 episodes (1953-1954) * Blake Edwards
Blake Edwards
in 4 episodes (1953-1954) * Frank McDonald in 3 episodes (1954) * Laslo Benedek in 3 episodes (1956) * William Asher
William Asher
in 2 episodes (1954) * William A. Seiter in 2 episodes (1955-1956)

WRITERS

Writers who worked on the show include:

* Gwen Bagni in 15 episodes (1952-1954) * John Bagni in 13 episodes (1952-1954) * Richard Carr in 13 episodes (1954-1956) * Frederick Brady in 9 episodes (1954-1956) * Blake Edwards
Blake Edwards
in 7 episodes (1952-1954) * Seeleg Lester in 5 episodes (1953-1954) * Merwin Gerard in 4 episodes (1953) * Frederick J. Lipp in 4 episodes (1954-1955) * Larry Marcus in 3 episodes (1952-1954) * Milton Merlin in 3 episodes (1952-1953) * Marc Brandell in 3 episodes (1954-1956) * László Görög in 3 episodes (1955-1956) * James Bloodworth in 3 episodes (1956) * Amory Hare in 2 episodes (1953) * Octavus Roy Cohen in 2 episodes (1954-1955) * Milton Geiger in 2 episodes (1954-1955) * Thelma Robinson in 2 episodes (1954) * Oscar Millard in 2 episodes (1955-1956) * Willard Wiener in 2 episodes (1955) * Robert Eggenweiler in 2 episodes (1956) * Ida Lupino
Ida Lupino
in 2 episodes (1956) * Roland Winters in 2 episodes (1956)

REFERENCES

* ^ The Billboard: Four Star Playhouse. Posted on 31 Jul 1954. * ^ A B C " Four Star Playhouse
Four Star Playhouse
- Full Cast & Crew". Retrieved November 28, 2015. * ^ Feiwell, Jill (December 12, 2003). "Life Oscar to Edwards". Daily Variety. Retrieved 21 January 2015 – via HighBeam Research . (Subscription required (help)).

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