IMDb > "Gunsmoke" (1955)
"Gunsmoke"
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany creditsepisode listepisodes castepisode ratings... by rating... by votes
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsmessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summaryplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

"Gunsmoke" (1955) More at IMDbPro »TV series 1955-1975

Photos (See all 89 | slideshow)

Overview

User Rating:
8.0/10   2,650 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
MOVIEmeter: ?
Up 1% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writer:
Charles Marquis Warren (developed for television by)
Contact:
View company contact information for Gunsmoke on IMDbPro.
Seasons:
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20
Release Date:
10 September 1955 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
Marshal Matt Dillon keeps the peace in the rough and tumble Dodge City. Full summary »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for 4 Golden Globes. Another 14 wins & 20 nominations See more »
NewsDesk:
(284 articles)
Leonard Nimoy lived long and prospered
 (From Hitfix. 27 February 2015, 5:20 PM, PST)

Rip: Leonard Nimoy Dies at 83
 (From Movies.com. 27 February 2015, 3:37 PM, PST)

Leonard Nimoy Has Passed Away
 (From DailyDead. 27 February 2015, 10:26 AM, PST)

User Reviews:
When You're Talking TV Westerns See more (26 total) »

Cast

 (Series Cast Summary - 5 of 1054)

James Arness ... Matt Dillon / ... (635 episodes, 1955-1975)

Milburn Stone ... Doc / ... (604 episodes, 1955-1975)

Amanda Blake ... Kitty / ... (568 episodes, 1955-1974)

Ken Curtis ... Festus / ... (304 episodes, 1959-1975)

Dennis Weaver ... Chester / ... (290 episodes, 1955-1964)
(more)

Series Directed by
Andrew V. McLaglen (96 episodes, 1956-1965)
Harry Harris (65 episodes, 1961-1966)
Ted Post (56 episodes, 1956-1963)
Bernard McEveety (52 episodes, 1967-1975)
Vincent McEveety (45 episodes, 1965-1975)
Gunnar Hellström (33 episodes, 1967-1975)
Charles Marquis Warren (26 episodes, 1955-1956)
Robert Totten (25 episodes, 1966-1971)
Jesse Hibbs (20 episodes, 1958-1961)
Richard Whorf (18 episodes, 1957-1961)
John Rich (14 episodes, 1957-1969)
Irving J. Moore (14 episodes, 1966-1974)
Philip Leacock (12 episodes, 1969-1972)
Mark Rydell (10 episodes, 1964-1966)
Marc Daniels (10 episodes, 1965-1967)
Arthur Hiller (9 episodes, 1959-1960)
Joseph Sargent (8 episodes, 1962-1965)
Robert Stevenson (6 episodes, 1956)
Buzz Kulik (5 episodes, 1957-1959)
Allen Reisner (5 episodes, 1965-1967)
Herb Wallerstein (5 episodes, 1971-1972)
Victor French (5 episodes, 1974-1975)
Christian Nyby (4 episodes, 1956-1964)
William D. Russell (4 episodes, 1957)
Dennis Weaver (4 episodes, 1961)
Jerry Hopper (4 episodes, 1963-1964)
Michael O'Herlihy (4 episodes, 1964-1974)
Richard C. Sarafian (4 episodes, 1965-1968)
Paul Stanley (4 episodes, 1971-1972)
Alf Kjellin (4 episodes, 1972-1973)
Seymour Berns (3 episodes, 1958-1959)
Gerald Mayer (3 episodes, 1960-1961)
Jean Yarbrough (3 episodes, 1960)
Tay Garnett (3 episodes, 1961-1966)
John English (3 episodes, 1963)
Robert Butler (3 episodes, 1967-1972)
Marvin J. Chomsky (3 episodes, 1968-1969)
James Sheldon (2 episodes, 1957-1965)
Louis King (2 episodes, 1957)
R.G. Springsteen (2 episodes, 1959)
Sobey Martin (2 episodes, 1962-1963)
William Conrad (2 episodes, 1963-1971)
Joseph H. Lewis (2 episodes, 1965)
Alvin Ganzer (2 episodes, 1966-1968)
Bernard L. Kowalski (2 episodes, 1966)
Herschel Daugherty (2 episodes, 1968-1969)
Leo Penn (2 episodes, 1968-1969)
 
Series Writing credits
Norman MacDonnell (635 episodes, 1955-1975)
John Meston (635 episodes, 1955-1975)
Charles Marquis Warren (635 episodes, 1955-1975)
Les Crutchfield (57 episodes, 1955-1967)
Calvin Clements Sr. (43 episodes, 1964-1974)
Kathleen Hite (42 episodes, 1957-1965)
Jim Byrnes (34 episodes, 1968-1975)
Paul Savage (27 episodes, 1963-1975)
John Dunkel (25 episodes, 1955-1967)
Marian Clark (21 episodes, 1959-1963)
Clyde Ware (17 episodes, 1965-1967)
Ron Bishop (15 episodes, 1967-1974)
Herbert Little Jr. (13 episodes, 1956-1957)
David Victor (13 episodes, 1956-1957)
Jack Miller (13 episodes, 1970-1973)
Hal Sitowitz (12 episodes, 1966-1975)
Sam Peckinpah (11 episodes, 1955-1958)
William Kelley (9 episodes, 1969-1972)
Harry Kronman (7 episodes, 1965-1973)
Preston Wood (7 episodes, 1966-1970)
Earl W. Wallace (7 episodes, 1974-1975)
Gil Doud (5 episodes, 1956-1957)
Richard Carr (5 episodes, 1965-1969)
Paul F. Edwards (5 episodes, 1970-1973)
Tom Hanley (4 episodes, 1956-1966)
Antony Ellis (4 episodes, 1963-1968)
Shimon Wincelberg (4 episodes, 1964-1974)
Calvin Clements Jr. (4 episodes, 1966-1971)
Arthur Rowe (4 episodes, 1968-1969)
Richard Fielder (4 episodes, 1969-1974)
Winston Miller (3 episodes, 1956)
Frank Paris (3 episodes, 1961-1964)
John Mantley (3 episodes, 1964-1974)
Robert Lewin (3 episodes, 1965-1966)
William Blinn (3 episodes, 1967-1971)
Herman Groves (3 episodes, 1969-1975)
Howard Dimsdale (3 episodes, 1969-1974)
Arthur Browne Jr. (3 episodes, 1969-1970)
Jess Carneol (3 episodes, 1969-1970)
Kay Lenard (3 episodes, 1969-1970)
Donald S. Sanford (3 episodes, 1970-1971)
William Keys (3 episodes, 1973-1974)
Daniel B. Ullman (2 episodes, 1956-1966)
William F. Leicester (2 episodes, 1956-1957)
Hal Moffett (2 episodes, 1961-1962)
John Rosser (2 episodes, 1962-1963)
Gwen Bagni (2 episodes, 1963-1964)
John Kneubuhl (2 episodes, 1963-1964)
George Eckstein (2 episodes, 1964-1965)
William Putman (2 episodes, 1965-1975)
Frank Q. Dobbs (2 episodes, 1965-1966)
Gustave Field (2 episodes, 1965-1966)
Robert C. Stewart (2 episodes, 1965-1966)
Scott Hunt (2 episodes, 1965)
Beth Keele (2 episodes, 1965)
James Landis (2 episodes, 1966-1967)
Charles Joseph Stone (2 episodes, 1967-1972)
Don Ingalls (2 episodes, 1967)
Ron Honthaner (2 episodes, 1968-1972)
Jack Turley (2 episodes, 1968-1969)
Robert Vincent Wright (2 episodes, 1971-1974)

Series Produced by
Norman MacDonnell .... producer / associate producer (356 episodes, 1955-1965)
John Mantley .... executive producer / producer / ... (223 episodes, 1965-1975)
Ron Honthaner .... associate producer (96 episodes, 1971-1975)
Joseph Dackow .... producer / associate producer (90 episodes, 1967-1971)
Leonard Katzman .... producer (84 episodes, 1970-1974)
Philip Leacock .... producer / executive producer (82 episodes, 1964-1967)
James Arness .... associate producer / executive producer (55 episodes, 1959-1964)
Frank Paris .... associate producer (54 episodes, 1961-1965)
Charles Marquis Warren .... producer (52 episodes, 1955-1957)
John G. Stephens .... producer (11 episodes, 1975)
Arthur Marks .... producer (2 episodes, 1967)
 
Series Original Music by
Leon Klatzkin (77 episodes, 1966-1971)
John Carl Parker (45 episodes, 1967-1974)
Fred Steiner (27 episodes, 1959-1965)
Morton Stevens (10 episodes, 1965-1971)
Rudy Schrager (9 episodes, 1964-1965)
René Garriguenc (7 episodes, 1959-1962)
Harry Geller (7 episodes, 1965-1971)
Jerry Goldsmith (6 episodes, 1960-1966)
Wilbur Hatch (6 episodes, 1960-1964)
Richard Shores (6 episodes, 1964-1972)
Jerrold Immel (6 episodes, 1972-1975)
Leith Stevens (5 episodes, 1960-1962)
Bruce Broughton (5 episodes, 1973-1975)
Nathan Scott (4 episodes, 1960-1964)
Van Cleave (4 episodes, 1961-1963)
Lyn Murray (3 episodes, 1960-1966)
Bernard Herrmann (3 episodes, 1961)
Tommy Morgan (3 episodes, 1962-1964)
Lucien Moraweck (2 episodes, 1960-1961)
Franz Waxman (2 episodes, 1966)
Jack Hayes (2 episodes, 1971)
Leo Shuken (2 episodes, 1971)
Martin L. Klein (2 episodes, 1973-1974)
 
Series Cinematography by
Fleet Southcott (215 episodes, 1955-1963)
Monroe P. Askins (127 episodes, 1967-1973)
Harry Stradling Jr. (87 episodes, 1964-1967)
Frank V. Phillips (51 episodes, 1963-1965)
Edward R. Plante (24 episodes, 1974-1975)
Ernest Miller (11 episodes, 1955-1956)
Ted D. Landon (5 episodes, 1973-1974)
Neal Beckner (4 episodes, 1966-1967)
Mack Stengler (3 episodes, 1955)
Robert Pittack (3 episodes, 1963)
Charles F. Wheeler (2 episodes, 1967-1971)
 
Series Film Editing by
Albrecht Joseph (153 episodes, 1958-1967)
Otto Meyer (126 episodes, 1959-1967)
Gerard Wilson (69 episodes, 1967-1975)
Leslie Vidor (61 episodes, 1955-1959)
Howard A. Smith (55 episodes, 1965-1975)
Thomas J. McCarthy (41 episodes, 1968-1974)
Donald W. Ernst (23 episodes, 1968-1970)
Sam Gold (12 episodes, 1957-1959)
Harry Coswick (10 episodes, 1957-1958)
Bill Mosher (8 episodes, 1967-1968)
Michael Luciano (6 episodes, 1956-1957)
Grant K. Smith (6 episodes, 1967-1968)
Michael Pozen (5 episodes, 1957-1958)
Carroll Sax (5 episodes, 1974)
Linda Schlesinger (3 episodes, 1971-1975)
Tom Stevens (2 episodes, 1974)
 
Series Casting by
Lynn Stalmaster (319 episodes, 1955-1964)
Pam Polifroni (182 episodes, 1966-1975)
James Lister (118 episodes, 1959-1966)
 
Series Art Direction by
Albert Heschong (141 episodes, 1961-1973)
Joseph R. Jennings (109 episodes, 1967-1975)
Nicolai Remisoff (70 episodes, 1955-1957)
Walter E. Keller (52 episodes, 1959-1961)
James Dowell Vance (38 episodes, 1963-1972)
James W. Sullivan (26 episodes, 1957-1958)
William Craig Smith (25 episodes, 1969-1973)
John B. Goodman (19 episodes, 1966-1967)
Raymond Beal (16 episodes, 1965-1966)
Malcolm C. Bert (5 episodes, 1965)
Marvin J. Chomsky (4 episodes, 1966-1967)
Gibson Holley (3 episodes, 1965)
 
Series Set Decoration by
Herman N. Schoenbrun (356 episodes, 1959-1975)
Raymond Boltz Jr. (36 episodes, 1957-1959)
G.W. Berntsen (33 episodes, 1956-1958)
Charles Vassar (23 episodes, 1959-1960)
 
Series Makeup Department
Glen Alden .... makeup artist (414 episodes, 1955-1975)
Pat Whiffing .... hair stylist (263 episodes, 1955-1967)
Gertrude Wheeler .... hair stylist (70 episodes, 1968-1973)
Newton Jones .... makeup artist (57 episodes, 1968-1970)
Helen Young .... hair stylist / makeup artist (41 episodes, 1967-1969)
Irving Pringle .... makeup artist (40 episodes, 1970-1972)
Esperanza Corona .... hair stylist (35 episodes, 1971-1975)
Cherie Banks .... hair stylist (24 episodes, 1970-1971)
Ken Chase .... makeup artist (10 episodes, 1972-1973)
George Lane .... makeup artist (9 episodes, 1971-1974)
Kay Shea .... hair stylist (7 episodes, 1965-1966)
Betty Pedretti .... hair stylist (7 episodes, 1965)
Newt Jones .... makeup artist (3 episodes, 1968)
Florence Bush .... hair stylist (2 episodes, 1965)
 
Series Production Management
Robert M. Beche .... production manager (201 episodes, 1963-1970)
Glenn Cook .... production manager / production supervisor (74 episodes, 1955-1959)
Paul Nichols .... production manager (55 episodes, 1970-1975)
Dewey Starkey .... production supervisor (52 episodes, 1959-1961)
Howard Joslin .... unit production manager (23 episodes, 1959-1960)
Ron Honthaner .... post production executive (10 episodes, 1969)
Abby Singer .... production manager (10 episodes, 1974)
Jack Aldworth .... production manager (9 episodes, 1975)
Gordon A. Webb .... production manager (6 episodes, 1972-1975)
 
Series Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Paul Nichols .... assistant director (90 episodes, 1964-1975)
Robert M. Beche .... assistant director (88 episodes, 1957-1971)
Glenn Cook .... assistant director (68 episodes, 1955-1957)
Wesley J. McAfee .... assistant director (56 episodes, 1961-1964)
Al Kraus .... assistant director (41 episodes, 1966-1969)
Christopher N. Seiter .... assistant director (40 episodes, 1964-1971)
Robert L. Rosen .... assistant director (39 episodes, 1962-1970)
Gordon A. Webb .... assistant director (23 episodes, 1972-1974)
Nathan Barragar .... assistant director (21 episodes, 1958-1959)
Martin Cohan .... assistant director (14 episodes, 1969-1970)
Robert Shue .... assistant director (13 episodes, 1969-1973)
Don Torpin .... assistant director (11 episodes, 1973-1974)
Howard Joslin .... assistant director (9 episodes, 1956-1958)
W.B. Eason .... assistant director (8 episodes, 1957-1958)
Robert Webb .... assistant director / assistant director: as Robert M. Webb (7 episodes, 1974-1975)
Max Stein .... assistant director (5 episodes, 1971-1972)
Bob White .... assistant director (4 episodes, 1971-1973)
Clancy Herne .... assistant director / second assistant director (3 episodes, 1969-1970)
Austen Jewell .... assistant director (3 episodes, 1971)
William D. Faralla .... assistant director (2 episodes, 1956)
Jack Voglin .... assistant director (2 episodes, 1957-1958)
 
Series Art Department
Clem Widrig .... property master (284 episodes, 1959-1972)
Mike Gordon .... property master (83 episodes, 1955-1959)
Craig Binkley .... assistant property master / property master / ... (66 episodes, 1970-1974)
Ted Cooper .... property master (33 episodes, 1957-1959)
Paul Sylos .... set designer (21 episodes, 1958-1959)
Earl W. Huntoon Jr. .... property master (19 episodes, 1972-1975)
Howard Cole .... property master (3 episodes, 1972)
 
Series Sound Department
Vernon W. Kramer .... sound mixer / production sound mixer (188 episodes, 1960-1969)
Jack A. Finlay .... sound effects editor / sound effects supervisor (125 episodes, 1965-1975)
Gene Eliot .... sound effects editor / sound effects editor: 1959-1965 (118 episodes, 1959-1965)
Andrew Gilmore .... production sound mixer / sound mixer (92 episodes, 1969-1973)
Joel Moss .... sound re-recording mixer / rerecording / ... (50 episodes, 1960-1963)
Jerry Rosenthal .... sound effects supervisor / supervising sound effects editor / ... (41 episodes, 1970-1972)
Alan Bernard .... production sound mixer / sound mixer (24 episodes, 1974-1975)
Terrance Emerson .... sound cable man (6 episodes, 1968)
Coye Vanover .... production sound mixer (4 episodes, 1973)
 
Series Special Effects by
Louis DeWitt .... special photographic effects (2 episodes, 1958)
Jack Rabin .... special photographic effects (2 episodes, 1958)
 
Series Visual Effects by
Louis DeWitt .... optical effects / special photographic effects (81 episodes, 1955-1958)
Jack Rabin .... optical effects / special photographic effects (81 episodes, 1955-1958)
 
Series Stunts
Alex Sharp .... stunt double: James Arness / stunt double: Douglas Kennedy (8 episodes, 1964-1968)
Bobby Somers .... stunts (8 episodes, 1972-1973)
Jimmy Noel .... stunt double: Milburn Stone / stunts (7 episodes, 1967-1974)
Hal Needham .... stunt double: Burt Reynolds / stunt double: Michael Higgins / ... (4 episodes, 1963-1964)
Jack N. Young .... stunts (3 episodes, 1956-1957)
Chick Sheridan .... stunt double: Chill Wills / stunt double: Jim Davis (2 episodes, 1962-1971)
Bobby Clark .... stunts (2 episodes, 1968-1974)
Jesse Wayne .... stunt double: Charles Kuenstle (2 episodes, 1969)
 
Series Camera and Electrical Department
Tom May .... grip (36 episodes, 1964-1965)
Bobby Jones .... gaffer (29 episodes, 1966-1967)
Michael D. O'Shea .... first assistant camera (25 episodes, 1967-1968)
Charles R. Young .... camera operator (21 episodes, 1974-1975)
Lloyd Ahern II .... assistant camera (10 episodes, 1966)
 
Series Casting Department
Frank Kennedy .... extras casting: locations (6 episodes, 1974-1975)
 
Series Costume and Wardrobe Department
Alexander Velcoff .... costumer / wardrobe (353 episodes, 1959-1975)
Robert O'Dell .... wardrobe (53 episodes, 1956-1959)
John E. Dowsing .... wardrobe (49 episodes, 1955-1957)
Thelma Milborn .... costumer / costumes (32 episodes, 1961-1964)
Ruth Stella .... costumer (18 episodes, 1960-1961)
Aida Swinson .... costumer (8 episodes, 1973-1975)
Ethel Shaw .... costumer (7 episodes, 1961)
Angela Alexander .... costumer (2 episodes, 1959)
 
Series Editorial Department
Fred W. Berger .... supervising editor / supervising film editor (118 episodes, 1955-1959)
 
Series Music Department
Gene Feldman .... music editor / supervising music editor (420 episodes, 1959-1973)
Carl Fortina .... musician: accordion soloist (355 episodes, 1955-1964)
Rex Koury .... composer: theme music (109 episodes, 1955-1974)
Glenn Spencer .... composer: theme music (84 episodes, 1955-1966)
Leon Klatzkin .... conductor (50 episodes, 1966-1971)
Robert Bain .... musician: guitar (39 episodes, 1955-1956)
Herschel Burke Gilbert .... music supervisor / conductor (15 episodes, 1964-1965)
John Carl Parker .... conductor (12 episodes, 1968-1974)
Fred Steiner .... conductor (11 episodes, 1960-1965)
Morton Stevens .... music supervisor / conductor (11 episodes, 1966-1967)
Harry Geller .... conductor (6 episodes, 1965-1971)
Robert Takagi .... supervising music editor (6 episodes, 1974-1975)
Lud Gluskin .... conductor (4 episodes, 1960-1962)
Leith Stevens .... conductor (3 episodes, 1960-1962)
Wilbur Hatch .... conductor (3 episodes, 1961-1964)
Nathan Scott .... conductor (3 episodes, 1961-1964)
Jerry Goldsmith .... conductor (2 episodes, 1960)
Lyn Murray .... conductor (2 episodes, 1961-1966)
Van Cleave .... conductor (2 episodes, 1961-1962)
Bernard Herrmann .... conductor (2 episodes, 1961)
 
Series Transportation Department
Chris Haynes .... driver (12 episodes, 1973-1975)
 
Series Other crew
Edle Bakke .... script supervisor (175 episodes, 1961-1970)
Mary Chaffee .... script supervisor (113 episodes, 1955-1959)
Paul Savage .... story consultant / executive story consultant (86 episodes, 1966-1969)
Herbert DuFine .... assistant to producer / assistant to producers (81 episodes, 1964-1969)
Lloyd Nelson .... script supervisor (77 episodes, 1970-1975)
Adele Cannon .... script supervisor (55 episodes, 1959-1961)
Ron Honthaner .... post production executive / assistant to producer (53 episodes, 1968-1971)
Paul F. Edwards .... assistant story consultant (51 episodes, 1970-1973)
Calvin Clements Sr. .... executive story consultant (45 episodes, 1969-1971)
Jack Miller .... executive story consultant (45 episodes, 1971-1975)
Jim Byrnes .... assistant story consultant (41 episodes, 1968-1970)
Frank Paris .... assistant to producer (40 episodes, 1960-1961)
John Mantley .... story consultant / script consultant (13 episodes, 1964-1965)
Erika Wernher .... script supervisor (6 episodes, 1969-1971)
Calvin Clements Jr. .... executive story consultant (5 episodes, 1969-1970)
Michael Kennedy .... production assistant (5 episodes, 1974)
Gana Jones .... script supervisor (3 episodes, 1961)
Eleanor H. Donahoe .... script supervisor (2 episodes, 1957-1958)
Joyce King .... script supervisor (2 episodes, 1973)
Ed Knight .... script supervisor (2 episodes, 1973)
Jimmy Noel .... stand-in: Milburn Stone (2 episodes, 1974)
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Marshal Dillon" - USA (rerun title)
See more »
Runtime:
USA:30 min (1955-1961) (233 episodes) (including commercials) | USA:60 min (1961-1975) (402 episodes) (including commercials)
Country:
Language:
Color:
Black and White (1955-1966) | Color (1966-1975)
Sound Mix:
Mono (Westrex Recording System)
Certification:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
James Arness and Milburn Stone are the only two regulars to stay with the show for its entire 20-year, 635-episode duration on CBS. There was one brief exception, when Stone was replaced by another doctor while he was recovering from a heart attack. That was Pat Hingle, who played Dr. John Chapman for 6 episodes in 1971.See more »
Quotes:
Louie Pheeters:[sitting at the bar in episode "Slocum"] Excepting some women, of course, just ain't nothing prettier than a full bottle.See more »
Movie Connections:
Soundtrack:
The Old TrailSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
10 out of 12 people found the following review useful.
When You're Talking TV Westerns, 26 May 2008
Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York

When you're talking TV westerns there are only two really that are at the top, interchangeably as it were. One is CBS's Gunsmoke and the other is NBC's Bonanza. Then you discuss anything else.

It's interesting to speculate how John Wayne's career might have taken a different turn had he accepted the offer to star in a weekly half hour television show about the Marshal of Dodge City. But of course he didn't do it, but instead pushed hard for an even taller marshal for the Kansas frontier town. James Arness had co-starred with the Duke in Big Jim McLain, Island in the Sky, and Hondo. He certainly brought a Duke like presence to the role of Marshal Matt Dillon.

A lot of people forget that Gunsmoke was a radio series for several years before it came to television. It ran parallel on radio in the declining years of radio drama and the voice of Matt Dillon on the radio was William Conrad. Certainly a capable enough actor, Conrad's squat appearance just didn't match the description on radio of Dillon. Why do you think John Wayne was the first choice?

Besides the regulars on every week which included Dennis Weaver as the stiff legged somewhat mentally challenged Deputy Chester Goode, Milburn Stone as testy and cantankerous Doctor Galen Adams, and Amanda Blake as Matt's significant other, Kitty Russell of the Longbranch saloon, the writers were smart enough to make sure the producers kept a recurring cast of regulars as the townspeople. Roy Roberts the banker, Eddy Waller as the livery stable owner, Glenn Strange as the bartender in the Longbranch, and for a while Burt Reynolds as a blacksmith, popped up in several episodes a year, even just with a line or two. It kept a great sense of continuity and the whole community of Dodge City became like familiar friends.

Poor Dennis Weaver who related the stiff leg was his idea to establish individuality of his character and that he had to study yoga in order to walk with it and mount a horse said that he would have done something different if he knew how difficult it was going to be. He read for the Matt Dillon part and took the role of Chester because he needed the work. But after several seasons, he naturally did not want to spend his career typecast as a half wit. He quit and the rustic Festus Hagen came on as the Deputy. Festus was uneducated, but was by no means stupid. His arguments with the cantankerous Doc Adams were classic. Festus was played with real flair by Ken Curtis.

If Gunsmoke is remembered for something other than a really great western series, maybe the best we ever had on television, it's the show that was saved by White House intervention. Along about 1965 because of declining ratings CBS was considering giving it the axe. But in an interview Lady Bird Johnson happened to mention that Gunsmoke was her favorite television show. That offhand comment revived interest in the series and CBS kept Gunsmoke on for another decade.

Gunsmoke was an adult western, the plot situations were adult, but it's characters were both real and morally upright. Matt Dillon was no kid's cowboy hero like Gene Autry or Roy Rogers, but he was honest and decent and a fine role model who was incorruptible. And he and Kitty Russell had an adult romance going in the same manner as Perry Mason and Della Street. It was unspoken that sex as well as liquor was to be had at the Longbranch, but Miss Kitty had eyes only for the Marshal.

As did America for twenty satisfying years.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (26 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for "Gunsmoke" (1955)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
what would i or you have been in the Old West? marylizautos
Any episodes without James Arness? hgn2001
Finally Finished the Series - My top 25 newdickmorris
Marshal Dillon too rough on Chester? newdickmorris
Matt's daughter joannabaroncelli
Doc and Chester aristadrive84
See more »

Recommendations

If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
Lawman Rio Bravo Gunsmoke: The Last Apache Hang 'Em High "Bonanza"
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
Show more recommendations

Related Links

Episode guide Full cast and crew Company credits
External reviews News articles IMDb TV section
IMDb Western section IMDb USA section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.

You may add a new episode for this TV series by clicking the 'add episode' button