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Diana Rigg's first appearance

 
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Dfrise
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2016 1:41 pm    Post subject: Diana Rigg's first appearance Reply with quote

Diana Rigg's first Avenger's appearance was in The Town Of No Return. This episode opens with neither Patrick MacNee or Diana on camera. It is only after the introduction to the story that she is first seen. And even at that she is practicing fencing and wearing a face guard. A second or two passes before she pulls it off, revealing her face.

Does anyone remember the publicity leading up to The Avengers in 1965? Had they kept Diana's face under wraps to build up interest in the new season? I'm reminded of the first James Bond movie after Sean Connery left the series. Mr. Lazenby's face wasn't revealed until several minutes into the next movie, co-starring coincidentally, Diana Rigg. Or did they simply showcase Diana as the replacement for Honor Blackman, who had left The Avengers, coincidentally, to star with Sean Connery in Goldfinger?
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mousemeat
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 6:01 pm    Post subject: Re: Diana Rigg's first appearance Reply with quote

Dfrise wrote:
Diana Rigg's first Avenger's appearance was in The Town Of No Return. This episode opens with neither Patrick MacNee or Diana on camera. It is only after the introduction to the story that she is first seen. And even at that she is practicing fencing and wearing a face guard. A second or two passes before she pulls it off, revealing her face.

Does anyone remember the publicity leading up to The Avengers in 1965? Had they kept Diana's face under wraps to build up interest in the new season? I'm reminded of the first James Bond movie after Sean Connery left the series. Mr. Lazenby's face wasn't revealed until several minutes into the next movie, co-starring coincidentally, Diana Rigg. Or did they simply showcase Diana as the replacement for Honor Blackman, who had left The Avengers, coincidentally, to star with Sean Connery in Goldfinger?


actually, Diana replaced another actress who was peel..
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Rhonda
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2016 11:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're right, the first episode broadcast (London area) was The Town Of No Return, but it was actually filmed about half a year later than the first-produced one : The Murder Market. I particularly like Diana Rigg's first-produced ones.
I don't think there was a UK trailer for Emma Peel taking over from Cathy Gale (as there was when Linda Thorson took over from her), but there was a lot of press coverage. The 'Chessboard' intro for the USA, must have been used as a trailer there too.
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dissolute
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2016 6:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've always thought it was a deliberate delay in revealing the new Avengers girl. keeping the audience in suspense those extra few seconds.
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Alan
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rhonda wrote:
You're right, the first episode broadcast (London area) was The Town Of No Return, but it was actually filmed about half a year later than the first-produced one : The Murder Market.


The truth of the matter is that is was actually *completed* about half a year later. The Town of No Return was of course the first Series 4 episode to go before the cameras (with Elizabeth Shepherd), but was shelved when it was decided that Shepherd didn't work out. The same thing of course happened with The Murder Market but this was remounted earlier:

The Town of No Return filming dates:

Thursday 29th October 1964 to Friday 13th November 1964 (Abandoned original)
Wednesday 21st July 1965 to c. Friday 30th July 1965 (Remounted scenes)

The Murder Market filming dates:
Monday 23rd November 1964 to Friday 4th December 1964 (Abandoned original)
c. Thursday 10th December 1964 to Friday 18th December 1965 (Remounted scenes)

The first episode to go before the cameras wholly with Diana Rigg as Emma Peel was The Master Minds, the filming of which commenced on Thursday 17th December 1965.

The interesting thing, looking at these production dates, is that clearly the producers took some while in deciding that Shepherd was wrong for the series - about six weeks and a day!
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Rodders
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2016 3:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That was a seriously quick turnaround on The Murder Market between Shepherd going and Rigg refilming.
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Alan
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2016 4:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is of course possible that the scenes filmed in the last few days of the first block didn't feature Emma Peel, but even then, still a quick turnaround.
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mrspeel01
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 10:25 am    Post subject: Diana Rigg's first appearance Reply with quote

with regard to Diana's debut, there is the ITN interview, in which she & Patrick Macnee appear. She talks about taking on the role. On youtube, the uploader of a brief clip of the interview, has stated that it was broadcast in December 1964. If this is correct, then it was just after she gained the role, and many months before her actual TV debut in October 1965. As there were only 3 TV channels in UK at that time (BBC2 having just started, to join BBC 1 and ITV) I would think it was watched by a large portion of the population-those with TV sets, of course!!

Publicity in newspapers is usually accompanied by a picture, but not always. But, even with George Lazenby, there was a pre-publicity shot of him in Bond suit, holding a gun, and leaning against a lamp-post. This shot has since been used as a DVD/blu-ray cover.


Last edited by mrspeel01 on Mon Sep 26, 2016 11:13 am; edited 1 time in total
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MikeR
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 11:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think that there was any effort at all to hide Diana Rigg's casting as Emma Peel.

Media interest was so great that ITN conducted a short interview with Rigg (with Macnee in attendance) at Elstree Studios on Monday December 14th 1966, which also mentioned her background as a Shakespearian actress. On the same day she also posed for a number of publicity photographs wearing a black turtle neck sweater and matching trousers, holding a 9mm Walther P38 automatic.

The Daily Express dated Tuesday, December 15th announced that Honor Blackman’s successor would be Diana Rigg, who had apparently turned down a three year contract worth £60,000 in favour of committing herself to the series for just one year. Brian Clemens was quoted as saying, “She will wear a studded dog collar and we are experimenting with shiny jet black polythene materials.” For her part Rigg confessed, “I’m slightly frightened about the whole thing.”
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