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Soldiers of Fortune is a 1955 syndicated half hour American television adventure series. It starred John Russell as Tim Kelly and Chick Chandler as his sidekick Toubo Smith who were international adventurers. Each episode would take place in a different country. Many of the film crew had worked at Republic Pictures studios with the show filmed on Republic's backlot then used by television's Revue Productions. The show was constantly rerun on American television into the 1960s. The original run was from January 10, 1955 to March 10, 1957. The show was sponsored for two years by 7 Up soft drink. One year after Soldiers of Fortune was cancelled, John Russell went on to star as Marshal Dan Troup in the successful ABC/Warner Brothers western series Lawman. This description was copied from Wikipedia. Written by
This syndicated series was a particular favorite of mine as a lad. I well remember looking forward every week to the further adventures of Tim Kelly and Toubo Smith. They were played by John Russell and Chick Chandler respectively.
When you think about it these two guys weren't anything less than 20th Century cowboys selling their gun-hands or in some cases giving their services away to people in need. The plots of Soldiers of Fortune were probably reworked from any number of westerns.
Still I liked the idea of these two guys turning up in all kinds of exotic places in the world and getting in every manner of adventure there was. I don't recall any romances for the lead John Russell. And Chandler as the sidekick? When did Smiley Burnette ever get involved with a woman?
John Russell later did another series for which he's more well known, Lawman. I would venture that his best remembered film role is in Rio Bravo as the wealthy rancher trying to free his no good brother from John Wayne's jail. He played good and bad guys equally well. Chick Chandler has a ton of movie credits going all the way back to silent days. A fair number of musicals are included, he started out in vaudeville as a song and dance man. You might remember him with Jack Haley supporting Alice Faye singing The International Rag in Alexander's Ragtime Band.
Though it lasted for only two seasons in first run syndication, WPIX in New York ran it for years after. It was a small boy's fantasy.
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