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The Big Time (2002)

In 1948 Manhattan, a diverse group of people are committed to making the fledgling Empire Network a success. Among them: a naive young woman who's hired as a script girl; an idealistic ... See full summary »



(teleplay), (play)
1 nomination. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
The Colonel
Marion Powers
Doc Powers
Audrey Drummond
Timothy Wilkison (as Shane Mikael Johnson)
Walt Kaplan
Joe Royal
Vaughn Clay
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Eydie Alyson ...
Ibsen Script Girl
Gabby Anderman ...
Another Miss Eve
Stuff (as Dwayne L. Barnes)
Ronald Bruner ...
Ed Wynn
Lizette Carrion


In 1948 Manhattan, a diverse group of people are committed to making the fledgling Empire Network a success. Among them: a naive young woman who's hired as a script girl; an idealistic programmer; and an aspiring director who hopes to make Empire "the network that takes risks and makes new stars." Then there's Empire's president, an eccentric scientist whose bride raises eyebrows at the network. Written by Schleppy

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


It was the beginning of television. And they put it all on the line to get it on the air.







Release Date:

20 October 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A televízió aranykora  »

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Originally made as a pilot for a television series, but was never commissioned. See more »

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User Reviews

Excellent TV Film About the Early Days of Television
21 October 2002 | by See all my reviews

TNT needs their collective heads examined for not picking up this story as a continuing series. Here's a cast of characters I would have loved to get to know more about.

In a similar vein to AMC's late lamented REMEMBER WENN, THE BIG TIME is the story of Empire Television, a new, small network just trying to stay afloat. It's 1948, television is new--and live. Into the mix of sales reps, aspiring directors, scientists, musicians and managers comes Audrey Drummond, fresh from Wisconsin; as she learns the ropes, we see the perils of live drama as well as the behind-the-scenes lives of the characters.

The movie was meant to be a pilot, so we don't learn all about these characters in the course of the film, but they are intriguing enough to keep us interested. Although Molly Ringwald, as Marion Powers, and Christopher Lloyd, as Doc, have star billing, the supporting characters are equally, if not more, interesting: Christina Hendriks as Audrey, Michael Silver as Walt Kaplan, Dylan Baker as the Colonel, Sharif Atkins as Joe Royal, and Shane Mikael Johnson as Tim Wilkison, with John DeLancie in an amusing guest star role as an egotistical radio actor a bit felled by the new medium. And, hallelujah, stereotypes were kept to a minimum!

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