Category:Screenplays by Rod Serling
Pages in category "Screenplays by Rod Serling"
The following 17 pages are in this category, out of 17 total. This list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
The following 17 pages are in this category, out of 17 total. This list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
1. Rod Serling – Serling was active in politics, both on and off the screen, and helped form television industry standards. He was known as the young man of Hollywood, clashing with television executives and sponsors over a wide range of issues including censorship, racism. Serling was born on December 25,1924, in Syracuse, New York and he was the second of two sons born to Esther and Samuel Lawrence Serling. Serlings father had worked as a secretary and amateur inventor before having children, sam Serling later became a butcher after the Great Depression forced the store to close. Rod had a brother, Robert J. Serling. Serling spent most of his youth 70 miles south of Syracuse in the city of Binghamton after his family moved there in 1926 and his parents encouraged his talents as a performer. Sam Serling built a stage in the basement, where Rod often put on plays. His older brother, writer Robert, recalled that, at the age of six or seven, Rod often talked to people around him without waiting for their answers. On a two-hour-long trip from Binghamton to Syracuse, the rest of the family remained silent to see if Rod would notice their lack of participation and he did not, talking nonstop through the entire car ride. In elementary school, Serling was seen as the class clown, however, his seventh-grade English teacher, Helen Foley, encouraged him to enter the schools public speaking extracurriculars. He joined the team and was a speaker at his high school graduation. He began writing for the newspaper, in which, according to the journalist Gordon Sander. He was also interested in sports and excelled at tennis and table tennis, when he attempted to join the varsity football team, he was told he was too small at 5 feet 4 inches tall. Serling was interested in radio and writing at an early age and he listened to various radio programs, especially thrillers with a fantasy or horror feel. Arch Oboler and Norman Corwin were two of his favorite writers and he also did some staff work at a Binghamton radio station. He was accepted into college during his year of high school. As editor of his school newspaper, Serling encouraged his fellow students to support the war effort. He wanted to leave school before graduation to join the fight, War is a temporary thing, Gus Youngstrom told him
2. Planet of the Apes (1968 film) – Planet of the Apes is a 1968 American science fiction film directed by Franklin J. Schaffner. It stars Charlton Heston, Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter, Maurice Evans, James Whitmore, James Daly, the screenplay by Michael Wilson and Rod Serling was loosely based on the 1963 French novel La Planète des Singes by Pierre Boulle. Jerry Goldsmith composed the groundbreaking avant-garde score and it was the first in a series of five films made between 1968 and 1973, all produced by Arthur P. Jacobs and released by 20th Century Fox. The film tells the story of a crew who crash-land on a strange planet in the distant future. Although the planet appears desolate at first, the crew members stumble upon a society in which apes have evolved into creatures with human-like intelligence. The apes have assumed the role of the dominant species and humans are mute creatures wearing animal skins, the script was originally written by Rod Serling, but underwent many rewrites before filming eventually began. Directors J. Lee Thompson and Blake Edwards were approached, but the films producer Arthur P. Jacobs, upon the recommendation of Charlton Heston, schaffners changes included an ape society less advanced—and therefore less expensive to depict—than that of the original novel. Filming took place between May 21 and August 10,1967, in California, Utah and Arizona, with sequences shot in and around Lake Powell. The films final closed cost was $5.8 million, the film was released on February 8,1968, in the United States and was a commercial success, earning a lifetime domestic gross of $32.6 million. In particular, Roddy McDowall had a relationship with the Apes series, appearing in four of the original five films. The original series was followed by Tim Burtons remake Planet of the Apes in 2001, also in 2001, Planet of the Apes was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant. As the ship sinks, Taylor finds Stewart dead and her body desiccated, once ashore, Dodge performs a soil test and pronounces the soil incapable of sustaining life. After abandoning their raft, the set off through a desolate wasteland in hopes of finding food. They find an oasis at the edge of the desert and go swimming, ignoring eerie scarecrow-like figures around the edge of the water, while they are swimming, their clothes are stolen. Taylor is attracted to one of the humans, whom he later names Nova, suddenly, armed and uniformed gorillas on horseback charge through the cornfield, brandishing firearms, snares, and nets. They capture some humans and kill the rest, in the chaos, Dodge is shot in the back of the neck and killed, Landon is wounded and rendered unconscious, and Taylor is shot in the throat and taken prisoner. The gorillas take Taylor to Ape City, where his life is saved after a blood transfusion administered by two chimpanzees, animal psychologist Zira and surgeon Galen, while his throat wound is healing, he is unable to speak. The apes have developed a society based on the beginnings of the human Industrial Era
3. A Carol for Another Christmas – A Carol for Another Christmas is a 1964 American television film, scripted by Rod Serling as a modernization of Charles Dickens A Christmas Carol and a plea for global cooperation. It was the first in a series of television specials developed to promote the United Nations. Originally televised on the American Broadcasting Company network on December 28,1964, it was not shown again for 48 years, until Turner Classic Movies broadcast it on December 16,2012. The film was the television program ever directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz. The film also featured Sterling Hayden, who had costarred with Sellers in Dr. Strangelove. He looks at a display of war medals on the wall. He shuts off the player, but as he leaves the room, he hears the record start to play again of its own accord, downstairs, he meets a visitor, his nephew Fred. Grudge caustically notes that Fred always comes to him for help with various causes, Fred complains that Grudge used his influence to cancel a cultural exchange program that Freds university had planned with a Polish counterpart. Grudge distrusts foreign countries, and contends that the U. S. should build up its arsenal, including nuclear weapons, and make sure other countries know the U. S. is willing to use them. Fred disagrees, arguing that the U. S. should help all people in need and foster communication in order to avoid future wars. As Fred leaves, he reminds his uncle that they have one thing in common, their love for Grudges son Marley, after Fred leaves, Grudge once again hears the record playing upstairs, and sees a short vision of the deceased Marley sitting at the dining room table. Suddenly Grudge finds himself aboard a World War I-era troopship, which is carrying many coffins, the Ghost suggests that the way to stop the killing is to spend more time talking to resolve conflicts, since when talking stops, fighting starts. Grudge walks through a door and meets the Ghost of Christmas Present and these people search through the snow for food as the Ghost eats in front of them. When Grudge criticizes the Ghost for this behavior, the Ghost reminds Grudge of his statement to Fred that refusing donations to the needy would make them less needy. The Ghost harangues Grudge with statistics and information about people in the world and finally in a fit of anger pulls the tablecloth. Grudge cannot stand any more and runs away into the dark, Grudge emerges into destroyed ruins that he recognizes as having been his local town hall, where he encounters the Ghost of Christmas Future. This Ghost explains that the hall was wrecked in a disastrous nuclear conflict that also annihilated most of the worlds people. A handful of survivors enter and prepare for a meeting and their leader is a demagogue called Imperial Me who wears a Pilgrim suit and a cowboy hat cut into a crown
4. Patterns (Kraft Television Theatre) – Patterns was the first major breakthrough of Rod Serling when the live television drama received critical acclaim as the January 12,1955 installment of the anthology series Kraft Television Theatre. Directed by Fielder Cook, the intense big-business drama starred Richard Kiley as up-and-coming vice-president Fred Staples, ruthless corporate boss Walter Ramsie attempts to edge out aging employee Andy Sloane to make room for newcomer Staples. Ramsie uses every opportunity to humiliate the fragile Sloane, while Staples sees Sloane as a professional who makes contributions to the firm. Serlings celebrated script tore apart the dynamics of the business world, in writing, acting and direction, Patterns will stand as one of the high points in the TV mediums evolution. Patterns is a play with one point of view toward the fiercely competitive world of big business and is bound to be compared with the current motion picture Executive Suite, by comparison, Executive Suite might be Babes in Toyland without a score. For sheer power of narrative, forcefulness of characterization and brilliant climax, in one of those inspired moments that make the theater the wonder that it is, Patterns was an evening that belonged to the many, not only to Mr. Serling. The performances of Everett Sloane, Ed Begley and Richard Kiley were truly superb, the production and direction of Fielder Cook constituted a fluid use of videos artistic tools that underscore how little the TV artistic horizons really have been explored. Patterns was seen from 9 to 10pm Wednesday over the National Broadcasting Companys network, Goulds request for a repeat was an unusual suggestion, since in that pre-videotape era, live shows were not repeated. Surprisingly, NBC took Goulds suggestion seriously and made plans for another production, when Patterns returned on February 9,1955, it was once again performed live, an unprecedented event. This was the first time a television drama was repeated due to popularity, on March 27,1956, a feature-length film version of Patterns was released. The film featured a script by Serling. Van Heflin replaced Kiley in the role of Fred Staples, Patterns was so well-received that Kraft mounted a live repeat of the show a month later, and the intimate TV show was turned into a less intimate movie in 1956. Except for the use of terms like “mimeographed” and “teletype, ” little about the drama seems dated, unless one is of the opinion that corporate politics, Television Heaven Writing for Television by Rod Serling Serlings Patterns an Icon of Lost Era by Tom Shales
5. Requiem for a Heavyweight – Requiem for a Heavyweight was a teleplay written by Rod Serling and produced for the live television show Playhouse 90 on 11 October 1956. Six years later, it was adapted as a 1962 feature film starring Anthony Quinn, Jackie Gleason, the teleplay won a Peabody Award, the first given to an individual script, and helped establish Serlings reputation. Nelson and Serling won Emmy Awards for their work, jack Palance portrays Harlan Mountain McClintock, a once-promising but now washed-up boxer who faces the end of his career after he is savagely defeated by a younger boxer. Keenan Wynn portrays McClintocks manager Maish, Keenans father Ed plays McClintocks cut man, McClintock is suffering from Dementia pugilistica or punch drunk syndrome—brain damage caused by his career. A fight doctor refuses to certify McClintock for further boxing, saying that another rough match could blind or even kill him. Boxing is all McClintock has ever known, and hes terrified of trying something new, and intensely loyal to Maish, who has nurtured him from his youth. Maish has troubles of his own, however, he owes money to the Mafia, kim Hunter portrayed Grace Carney, an employment agency worker who tries to help the boxer make a transition to a new career. Maish persuades the boxer to turn to professional wrestling, though McClintock is proud that he never had a fight and is uncomfortable with the staged, predetermined wrestling match. Army disapproves of Maishs plans and refuses to be a part of them, just before he is scheduled to go into the wrestling ring in a humiliating mountain man costume, McClintock learns of Maishs betting against him, and parts ways with his manager and mentor. Though he feels that boxing can ruin mens lives, Maish finds another promising young boxer to train, McClintock takes a chance on working with children at summer camp. Because Serling and Palance were both experienced boxers, they brought a level of authenticity to Requiem for a Heavyweight, although there was very little boxing depicted in the broadcast. Requiem for a Heavyweight was the beginning of what one of the new mediums most successful creative teams, writer Rod Serling. Co-starring with Connery were Warren Mitchell and Rakoffs future wife Jacqueline Hill, michael Caine was featured in a small role in a new scene written by Rakoff. This production was reviewed in The Times newspaper the following day and it is unfortunate that Mr. Serling has allowed a saccharine romance to intrude into this self-sufficient and wholly masculine situation. Although physically miscast as the fighter, Mr. Sean Connery played with a shambling and this version has not survived, although the discovery of a complete recording of the soundtrack was announced in 2014. It had been in possession of Rakoff, who had made a recording at the time of transmission for posterity, in 1959 Dutch television adapted the story as Requiem voor een zwaargewicht. Ko van Dijk as Malloy Ton van Duinhoven as Manager Jan Blaaser as Verzorger In 1974 Radio Television Belgrade adapted the story as Rekvijem za teškaša, afterward, Maish is confronted by bookies who threaten his life if he fails to repay the bet he just lost on the fight. The film version is darker in its plotline than the original teleplay
6. Seven Days in May – Directed by John Frankenheimer, it stars Burt Lancaster, Kirk Douglas, Fredric March, and Ava Gardner. The screenplay was written by Rod Serling based on the novel of the name by Fletcher Knebel and Charles W. Bailey II. The book was written in late 1961 and into early 1962, during the first year of the Kennedy administration, although no longer in uniform, Walker continued to be in the news as he attempted to run for Governor of Texas and made speeches promoting strongly right-wing views. President Kennedy had read Seven Days in May shortly after its publication, the story is set in the early 1970s, ten years in the future at the time of the films 1964 release, and the Cold War is still a problem. Although personally opposed to President Lymans position, Casey, implied to be a lawyer in private life, is appalled by the unconstitutional cabal and alerts the President of the potential threat. S. Casey makes the pretense of a visit to General Scotts former mistress. The aging, alcoholic Clark is sent to El Paso, Texas, to locate the supposed Site Y military base, barnswell, who is believed to have declined participation in the coup. The senator convinces Colonel Mutt Henderson, the deputy commander and nonparticipant in the coup. They succeed, though when Clark makes a call to the President, a meeting with Scott is scheduled in the Oval Office, with the President confronting him and demanding his resignation and that of all Joint Chiefs involved in the plot. Lyman counters with the suggestion that a coup could result in a preemptive strike by Moscow. Scott is unmoved, stating that he feels the American people are behind him, Lyman considers using the blackmail letters, but decides against it, and allows Scott to leave. Somewhat reassured, the agree to stick to the plan to appear on all television. A copy is given to Scott and the officers in on the plot. The ending has Lyman addressing the American people on the countrys future and his name appears on a list of actors engaged for the production, but there is no confirmation of his actual participation in the filming. He is also listed among those who were scheduled to play a part in the filming, but whether he ultimately did has not been confirmed. Raisch was previously used by Kirk Douglas for a scene in his 1960 film epic Spartacus in which, playing a Roman soldier. Douglas engaged him again for a fight scene in his 1962 modern-day western Lonely Are the Brave. Frankenheimer wanted the screenwriter to be a partner in the production, Douglas agreed to star in it, but he also wanted his frequent co-star Burt Lancaster to star in the film as well
7. Assault on a Queen – Assault on a Queen is a 1966 American action-adventure film, directed by Jack Donohue, starring Frank Sinatra and Italian beauty Virna Lisi. Based on a 1959 novel by Jack Finney, it was adapted for the screen by Rod Serling, Brittain gets the submarine in working order with the assistance of his own partner, Linc, and a new man, Moreno, a war hero and expert with engines. Disguised as officers from a British vessel on a mission, Brittain, Rossiter and Lauffnauer board the Queen Mary. The captain complies after the pirates threaten to fire on the ship. Rossiters greed leads to his being killed by a member of the Queens crew, Brittain must abandon the money when Lauffnauer prepares to dive the submarine without him. A U. S. Coast Guard cutter in the vicinity comes to the ocean liners aid, Lauffnauer elects to fire the submarines torpedoes at it. When the others protest, he draws a gun, Rosa tries to stop him and Lauffnauer accidentally shoots his friend, Moreno. The Coast Guard cutter destroys the torpedoes that Lauffnauer manages to fire from the U-boat, Brittain, Rosa and Linc dive off the submarine, just before it is rammed by the Americans. They survive, paddling a raft, but their mission has resulted in three deaths and netted them nothing, the U. S. Coast Guard cutter seen in the film was portrayed by the Miami, Florida-based USCGC Androscoggin. The USCGC Minnetonka is also listed in the final credits. At the time of filming, Minnetonka was homeported in Long Beach, California, list of American films of 1966 Assault on a Queen at Internet Movie Database Entry at Turner Classic Movies database Entry at TVGuide. com Shot of a scene of the movie
8. In the Presence of Mine Enemies (film) – In the Presence of Mine Enemies is a 1997 Showtime TV movie about the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising in World War II. The film is a remake of an original TV drama scripted by Rod Serling for Playhouse 90 which originally starred Charles Laughton, the plot centres on a rabbi, and his children. The movie also features Charles Dance as a German officer, in the Presence of Mine Enemies - IMDb
9. The Man (1972 film) – The Man is a 1972 political drama directed by Joseph Sargent and starring James Earl Jones. The screenplay, written by Rod Serling, is based upon The Man. He replied, I have misgivings about that one and it was done as a TV special. Had we known it was to be released as a picture, we would have asked for more time. President Fenton and the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives are killed at a summit in Frankfurt, by law the serving President upon the death of the elected one, Vice President Noah Calvin is suffering from a terminal condition and refuses to assume the office. Dilman, a Black man, is sworn in and arrives at the White House to assume office, Eatons outspoken wife, Kay, berates her husband for not pushing to become President, even though it would violate the succession order. Eaton assures her that he will become President once Dilman proves unable to handle the job, in the morning, Eaton and his advisers arrive at the Oval Office and Eaton begins maneuvering himself into a position as the power behind the throne. Eaton gives Dilman a binder of briefing notes, including responses to News media questions that support the positions of the Fenton administration, Dilman meets the press for the first time as President. When Dilman stops to consult notes after each question, an aggressive reporter accuses Dilman of being a puppet, Eaton scribbles a note and has it taken forward to the President. Dilman realizes that hes being manipulated, crumples Eatons note, and he proceeds under his own initiative, deciding that as President he will have to make his own decisions. Dilman, a moderate, is confronted by activists and extremists about his skin color. Senator Watson introduces a bill that would require Congressional approval of any dismissal of a member by the President. Eaton doesnt tell Dilman about it, but several Black congressmen have a meeting with Dilman to discuss their concerns, Dilman believes they are talking about a minority rights bill and pledges his support, until one of the congressmen corrects him. Dilman subsequently reprimands Eaton and a group of leaders, questioning why such an important bill is not being brought to his attention. Senator Watson visits the South African embassy, the ambassador comments that his own country would never have a Black man as President. He shows a film to Watson that proves Wheeler was in South Africa during the assassination attempt. Dilman obtains Wheelers confession and hands him over for extradition, the act alienates his activist adult daughter, Wanda. Wheeler calls the President a House Person, the President responds that Black men dont burn churches and kill four children, they dont hunt down a Martin Luther King with a telescopic sight
10. Patterns (film) – Patterns is a 1956 film directed by Fielder Cook and starring Van Heflin, Everett Sloane, and Ed Begley. The screenplay by Rod Serling was an adaptation of his teleplay Patterns originally telecast January 12,1955 on the Kraft Television Theatre, Staples is more insistent in the film than in the play that he and his wife leave town, even telling her to pack. The final confrontation between Staples and Ramsey takes place the day, not immediately afterwards. For the film, Andy Sloanes name was altered to Bill Briggs, also, Ramsey and Company is depicted as a huge corporate machine, with expansive quarters downtown. And the company does things in a big way, while Sloane and Begley reprised their roles, Heflin replaced Kiley in the role of up-and-coming executive Fred Staples, though at 46, he was arguably a little too old to play a junior executive. But Serling also changed Staples character, and, in the teleplay, the other execs talk of having expected a much older man. That was also omitted from the film version, most of the scenes are set in the corporate boardroom and surrounding offices of Ramsey & Co. a Manhattan industrial empire headed by the ruthless Walter Ramsey. He recruits youthful industrial engineer Fred Staples, whose performance at a company Ramsey has recently acquired has impressed the boss, Ramsey is grooming Staples to replace the aging Bill Briggs as the second in command at the company. Briggs has been with the firm for decades, having worked for and admired the companys founder and his concern for the employees clashes repeatedly with Ramseys ruthless methods. Ramsey will not fire Briggs outright, but he does everything in his power to sabotage, the old man stubbornly refuses to give in. Staples has mixed feelings about the situation, ambition conflicting with sympathy for Briggs. The stress gets to Briggs, who collapses after a confrontation with Ramsey and this causes a heated showdown between Ramsey and Staples, in which Staples announces he is quitting. In the end, Ramsey persuades him to stay, telling him that he is the one who can function at Briggss level. Staples accepts a promotion and double his salary and stock options, Staples also tells Ramsey of Briggs one little dream of someday walking in and breaking Ramseys jaw. He now reserves that dream for himself, Ramsey says hell have it written into the contract agreement and will attach a special rider giving him the same privilege. Ramsey notes that Briggs son will be provided for and Staples asks if that will let him sleep better tonight, Ramsey smiles and says, It begins. That was something not done during that period and this brilliant script by the creator of the Twilight Zone, Rod Serling, is considered by many as the finest piece of writing he has ever done and brought him instant acclaim. It is ably directed by Fielder Cook, the ensemble cast is superb, with special kudos to Van Heflin, Ed Begley, Beatrice Straight and Everett Sloane
11. Saddle the Wind – Saddle the Wind is a 1958 Western film directed by Robert Parrish, written by Rod Serling and produced by Armand Deutsch. It was filmed in Metrocolor and CinemaScope, retired gunslinger and former Confederate soldier Steve Sinclair is living as a rancher in a small western community. He collaborates with the main landowner Dennis Deneen, from whom he rents the ranch and his quiet life is disrupted by the appearance of his emotionally unstable younger brother Tony and Tonys beautiful girlfriend Joan. An old rival of Steves, gunman Larry Venables, also arrives on the looking for Steve. Tony confronts Venables and kills him in a shootout and his success goes to his head and he gets drunk, ignoring Joan. A new problem arises with the arrival of Clay Ellison, a farmer who plans to fence off a strip of land currently grazed by cattle, Tony attempts to drive off Ellison, but Steve intervenes. Ellison appeals to Deneen, who agrees to defend Ellisons legal rights to the land, however Tony murders Ellison when he attempts to buy provisions in town. Deneen breaks his ties with the Sinclairs, Steve intends to leave the ranch, but Tony tries to take over. Steve drives him off, but Tony confronts Deneen and attempts to kill him, both are wounded in the gunfight. Deneens men recruit Steve to find Tony, who has fled into the hills, when Steve finds him, Tony shoots himself. Steve tells the wounded Deneen, who persuades him to stay on at the ranch with Joan. Mary Ellison According to MGM records the film made $1,005,000 in the US and Canada and $1,075,000 elsewhere, saddle the Wind at the Internet Movie Database