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Bright Promise


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These were neat. I think Paul Lukather is wearing the shirt he was wearing in the pic with Susan Brown (in the matching shirt).

Considine's character sounds interesting. He is described as a loner. I think I read he was the father of Ann's baby in an article on soaps from the 1970s.

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just darling for babies. I've loved a lot of names. But now that it is our baby, we just haven't found one good enough," she giggled, quite aware that just about every mother in the world has had such a problem, and that now it is her turn! Nevertheless, it is pretty sure that Pam and Michael will find a name in the next few weeks, and five will get you ten that if it is a boy, "Michael" will be in there someplace.

Another predicament that seems to be working out just fine is the conflict with her part as Sandy Jones on "Bright Promise." Sandy, as we all know, had a hysterectomy. It is interesting to speculate just how far the writers on the show listened to Pam's impassioned plea about over-population as they wrote the plot we have today on "Bright Promise." At any rate, Pamela realized that soon there would be quite an on-screen discrepancy between the story line of a barren Sandy, and a very pregnant Pamela.

"I went to Jerry Layton (the producer) right away, and he was very sweet about it. He said that the show would be as helpful as they could," about this amusing difficulty. Pam also couldn't quite understand how AFTER NOON TV found out about this delightful event so soon. "I only told my real husband Michael, then my screen husband Peter (Ratray) and then Jerry Layton, and then..." This gal, who has been an actress since the age of ten, doing "summer stock and winter stock in Pittsburgh" (her hometown) did not seem to realize one thing. Happy news gets out very quickly about a national favorite on a television series!

Pamela tried hard to fill us in on her career, but she quickly got back to that baby. "I really didn't know what was wrong," said Pam, "while I was up on location with Michael." Michael Macready, her young dynamic producer-director husband, was filming his latest movie "The Folks At Red Wolf Inn" and Pam went along to be with her guy and "cooked two meals a day for thirty people." ("\You've got to be awfully in love with your husband to do that, we'd guess!) "But I got so nauseous," admitted Pam, who is a terrific cook, "that I looked it up in a book, and it said that food, and food smells often contributed to nausea in the early months of pregnancy." Pamela laughed delightedly as she continued, "and that was all I was going all day long!"

Now that it's all out in the open, Pam and Michael have dutifully reported the news to all four grand-parents, Pam's brother and two sisters, and Michael's six brothers and sisters - a marvelous set of uncles and aunts and grandparents for my baby.

In the meantime, with two months waiting left, Pam divides her time between baby showers and driving her directors crazy by hiding behind very large handbags and over-size chairs.

"What Sandy can't do, I can," said an ecstatic Pamela Murphy as she hurried off to rehearsal with the biggest purse you could find in any department store. Well, after all! It's a woman's privilege to change her mind, isn't it?

- Abby Edwards

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("A darling," said several of Dabney's co-workers.) Dabney generously supplied the photo of Jean and their two lovely children, which accompanies this article, from their personal scrapbook. Kelly is now 8 years old and Randolph is now 3.

When Dabney was (hopefully) pinned down to what he did like, since it seemed to us he had mentioned thousands of things that he didn't, it came as a relief that his lovely wife Jean and his two children are first on the list. He then chewed on that very wet, stubby cigar another moment before he admitted he also liked good music ("not rock, I don't understand it, good food, good booze, friends, and a vegetable garden he had just planted - "the first 'Victory Garden' since World War II."

Since he lives in the beautiful Pacific Palisades, an elegant area on the shores of the lovely Pacific Ocean, we asked Dabney if he does much swimming. "No," he said with a straight stare. It seemed inconceivable that a strong attractive man like that would never take a dip in the biggest piece of water on this whole earth, especially since it's just a few steps from his home. "Well, sure, I go in the ocean once in a while, doesn't everybody? But that's so 'Hollywood,' he said.

Our final question to Dabney Coleman: "Now that we know what you think of teachers, doctors, lawyers, writers, actors, politicians, etc., how do you rate yourself?"

There was a fraction of a pause and he said, "Well, at least I'm not boring...I hope."

He smiled, rose, and left for his rehearsal twenty minutes early.

Darn it, we'd meant to ask him one more question, and that was whether or not he might possibly like good poetry. a poem came to mind, buy that enchanting Scotsman, Robert Burns, that has these lines:

"O wad some Power

The giftie gie us

To see oursels

As ithers see us."

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Regina Gleason looks like Bev McKinsey in that pic. I haven't seen that one before. Thanks.

Dabney Coleman does NOT come off across well in this interview at all. The interviewer tries, but I think it almost makes it worse.

Pamela Murphy's comments about the population explosion and how it relates to soaps was interesting since soaps have always been heavy in children / pregnancy department. I really wish this show had continued. It sounds like there was a solid core, but the show's ratings never exploded.

I've read Sandy had an illegitimate child, but I've never uncovered any details regarding that story.

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There is some interesting details here I didn't know like Red Wilson being the foil to the Ann / Thomas pairing and the triangle between Howard / Ann / Sylvia. This must not have had much play since I've read Mark Miller, Howard, was involved in a movie production in the summer of 1971, which involved location shooting in Africa. I wonder if Anthony Eisley's character was brought in to fill the void while he was gone.

I didn't know Howard was Sandra's father. I guess Lesley Woods was the girl's grandmother then.

Thanks, Carl. I really enjoyed this.

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alone and his old friends are delighted to see her.

When she's in town, she and her mother speak in Polish. "We are like two wonderful spies when we get on the phone. Mother has a fancy y that someone is always listening in, and although we're only speaking of matters that have a private meaning, she is deeply mysterious. A really terrific woman, my mother! She is seventy-two and studying Spanish at Hollywood High. Sometimes we go to rummage sales. We are both mad antique collectors and mother is like the fabled Collier Brothers, those two old millionaires who lived in a mansion where they kept everything, threw nothing away, so that when they died, you had to tunnel into the house." And no one at the rummage sales stops Gail or identifies her as an actress, although she has been a successful one for some time, both in the theatre and on television, and received a great deal of fan mail when she was on Peyton Place.

The fact is Gail Kobe is an actress, not a personality, and she takes on completely the character she is playing. Students in her drama classes at San Fernando Valley State College are quite aware of her professional status, yet they still find it hard to identify her as Ann Boyd.

But far beyond the student she once was at UCLA, she is a dedicated actress. "There are probably more glorious ways to live and ways that present less problems, but this business of acting excites every part of me," she says. "I've never been ambitious to be a star. I always thought it a great responsibility, too great. I don't think anyone can pay you for the pain - so many of these people have gone through so much, the way they must look, the way they must maintain themselves,and one picture after another. I don't know how they can sleep! I am content to be an actress. The life is exciting, the places I have been on locations - all that i have learned about - there are so many things with which I would have had contact in no other way."

she speaks so softly you have to lean across the table to hear, and she laughs, admitting she is shy and would hate to disturb the people at the next table. But, yes, she loves acting; for the last two years has been very active with Theatre West and the Mark Taper Forum and is delighted with her role in Bright Promise. "As an actress you think, 'Can I make people happy?' 'Does this interest them?' 'Does it change their minds?'"

Gail grew up in Detroit, the youngest of two children. "My sister and I are fifteen years and three days apart. That always fascinated me, that three days." When she was six, her parents noticed that she was limping, took her to a doctor, discovered she was running a high fever and had polio. There were six children in the school who had it and one of them still wears corrective shoes. Gabriella was the lucky one. She was never in an iron lung, just had therapy and the doctor suggested dancing, "which is really what led to my acting. I loved dancing, it was pure fantasy!"

"I am Polish and French and in Detroit there was a group of people who had come to America before the war and formed the Polish Artists Association and gave productions in Polish and French. My mother was interested in this group, and I began dancing in some of their productions. It was marvelous! These Polish actors were wild men, the whole marvelous kind of thing you hardly ever see in this country. They were emotional and explosive, they reacted passionately. It was a whole new world and i loved every minute of it! I started dancing with them when I was seven and the next thing, I was on the road with them playing parts. It was a natural transition. And of course, I spoke Polish, had spoken it before I spoke English."

She also kept on with her dancing, rigorously, until in eleventh grade she developed a slight heart murmur. Now it is evident that this was just a part of growing up, but at the time it was the end of her dancing. No one in the family had ever been theatrical anyhow. Gail's dad who had at one time had a small parts factor in Detroit, had lost that during the depression and was driving a truck.

After several years at UCLA, she tried New York with the theatre in mind but found it such "an angry city - not a city that expands me in any way as a human being or does anything for my mind. I love the museums and the theatre, but I can't stand the fact that you are never alone, you are always packed in with strangers on subways, on streets, you can never see a whole cloud or a whole tree. I became fearful and stopped doing things that I really wanted to do. I couldn't survive emotionally in that city."

She came back west and took her degree, worked for almost a year on her masters, and contemplated directing - something she still hopes to do some day. Communication is so vitally important to Gail, this is why she's been teaching at San Fernando Valley State, and one day she would like to write and direct her own films. She had planned to direct in the beginning, but in Jeff Corey's acting class she met young actor Peter Baldwin (now a director) and married him. That was '59, and for most of the next six years, they traveled in Europe. Peter had been signed for a picture in Italy with Roberto Rossalini and went on to do five or six more pictures for German and French producers.

Gail worked too. She made one film and did a great deal of looping and English dubbing for foreign pictures. The European years were a great adventure, and she developed into a superb cook. As a matter of fact, what she is doing now is working on a cookbook that will include festival meals with their historical traditions from many, many countries of the world.

But after six years, her marriage broke, and Gail came back to America. "I needed to come back to this tempo. Much as I loved Europe and happy as I had been, I now had to come back home." The divorce was a sad thing for this girl. She came back to Hollywood where on Peyton Place she played a woman whose marriage was in trouble - a part terribly close to home.

What she understands now is that marriage is probably just not for her. "I think it is very hard. I have known so many couples who are terribly nice to the waitress, then walk out of the restaurant and proceed to lash each other. Somehow if you could maintain a distance in marriage, so you could be mutually courteous, if you could be separate and be able to grow as individuals and not take each other for granted...My mother and father were happy but it seems to me in those days, people asked for less. They didn't ask for travel. Their best friends were their family. I don't know what the difference was but somehow they supplemented their personal differences and drives."

She has some interesting friends - writers, directors and actors for the most part connected with the Mark Taper Forum. But when it comes to love and its entanglements, she's keeping that strictly to the script of Bright Promise. Any man who wants to catch up with the real Gail Kobe should try boarding the fishing skiff at San Pedro some midnight and be on the alert for a slender person in blue jeans and an old shirt.


Edited by CarlD2
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