1

Topic: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

I've been reading an amazing feature on Fleming's involvement in The Man from UNCLE series. He came up with the name Napoleon Solo, and was in discussion on the origins of the series from the start. However, with the success of Bond, EON tried to scupper it for fear of his lending too much involvement to it, and for similarities.

He didn't come up with the Uncle name, which was supposed to suggest ties to the United Nations. Not that they're very effective these days.   ajb007/crap

Nor did he devise the Russian agent played by David McCallum.

Fleming did come up with the name of April Dancer, for the short-lived Girl from UNCLE starring Stefanie Powers.

Too much humour did for the UNCLE series, as it tried to be like the Batman series, too campy etc.

"This is where we leave you Mr Bond."

Roger Moore 1927-2017

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Did you ever see the first series (the black and white one?) that was less campy than the colour series. I enjoed man from uncle, always reminded me of the moore years.

Check out all my Bond related Movie Reviews - http://www.Movie-Blogger.com/users/q-branch2012/

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

When I was a kid they were all in black and white; I had a black and white telly.  ajb007/biggrin

The world seemed similar to Bond's world in Thunderball. It's amazing how much mileage everyone got out of that and GF. The first two films weren't quite the same.

"This is where we leave you Mr Bond."

Roger Moore 1927-2017

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Napoleon Plural wrote:

When I was a kid they were all in black and white; I had a black and white telly.  ajb007/biggrin

You were lucky you had a telly !  ajb007/lol

YNWA 96

The Unbearables

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Napoleon Plural wrote:

I've been reading an amazing feature on Fleming's involvement in The Man from UNCLE series. He came up with the name Napoleon Solo, and was in discussion on the origins of the series from the start. However, with the success of Bond, EON tried to scupper it for fear of his lending too much involvement to it, and for similarities.

He didn't come up with the Uncle name, which was supposed to suggest ties to the United Nations. Not that they're very effective these days.   ajb007/crap

Nor did he devise the Russian agent played by David McCallum.

Fleming did come up with the name of April Dancer, for the short-lived Girl from UNCLE starring Stefanie Powers.

Too much humour did for the UNCLE series, as it tried to be like the Batman series, too campy etc.

Interesting, Mr Plural. Can you link us to the article or is it a hard copy?

"The tough man of the world. The Secret Agent. The man who was only a silhouette." - Ian Fleming, Moonraker (1955).

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Sir Miles wrote:
Napoleon Plural wrote:

When I was a kid they were all in black and white; I had a black and white telly.  ajb007/biggrin

You were lucky you had a telly !  ajb007/lol

Aye, you had it soft. We used t'live in shoebox in middle of t'road...

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Interesting too that Fleming used the name Mr Solo in Goldfinger for one of the hoodlums.

"How was your lamb?" "Skewered. One sympathises."

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Road? You had roads?!!! ajb007/lol

Barbel wrote:
Sir Miles wrote:
Napoleon Plural wrote:

When I was a kid they were all in black and white; I had a black and white telly.  ajb007/biggrin

You were lucky you had a telly !  ajb007/lol

Aye, you had it soft. We used t'live in shoebox in middle of t'road...

"Felix Leiter, a brother from Langley."

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Blackleiter wrote:

Road? You had roads?!!! ajb007/lol

Barbel wrote:
Sir Miles wrote:

You were lucky you had a telly !  ajb007/lol

Aye, you had it soft. We used t'live in shoebox in middle of t'road...

We had simple paths that led to the caves we hid from the sabre-toothed tigers in.

Dalton & Connery rule. Brozz was cool. Craig is too.
#1.TLD/LTK 2.TND 3.QOS 4.GF 5.DN/GE 6.SP 7.FRWL 8.TB/TMWTGG 9.TWINE 10.YOLT

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Guy Richie is making a new film version of Uncle, if it is in the same vein as his Sherlock films I think they could be good although Iam not to sure about what I read today as to Tom Cruise maybe starring in it.

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

ajb007/martini  Great news , I loved The Man from UNCLE.  ajb007/biggrin

Pitty about Tom Cruise  ajb007/crap

"I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Well, he's good casting for Napoleon. Less sure about the Solo bit.

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Barbel wrote:

Well, he's good casting for Napoleon.

Sod off.

"This is where we leave you Mr Bond."

Roger Moore 1927-2017

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Napoleon Plural wrote:
Barbel wrote:

Well, he's good casting for Napoleon.

Sod off.

ajb007/lol

I think I may have been unclear (UNCLEar?)- I'm comparing Cruise with Napoleon Bonaparte (generally reckoned to be short and dark, like Cruise). Not any other Napoleons!

Last edited by Barbel (19th Mar 2013 21:17)

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

In 1962 producer Norman Felton was in an enviable position having been responsible for a string
of immensely popular television programmes. His most recent offering, DR. KILDARE, was
attracting massive audiences around the globe. Despite this latest triumph Felton forged ahead
constantly looking for a new idea to develop into what he hoped might be his next successful
television venture.Being an admirer of the works of Alfred Hitchcock, in particular the Cary
Grant vehicle NORTH BY NORTHWEST, Felton began to formulate a concept using the premise of
an unsuspecting, but resourceful, character drawn into a web of intrigue, espionage and danger.
Although fascinated by the idea he realised that episodic television could not be sustained whilst
chronicling the adventures of a seemingly innocent member of the public thrust constantly into
situations of this nature on an unfeasible, weekly basis. Changing direction Felton turned to the
literary world of espionage for further inspiration and came upon the soon to become legendary
character of James Bond and, of course, his gifted creator. Ian Fleming, an already much lauded
writer, was soon to enjoy a bountiful flirtation with the world of celluloid as his own famous
creation was being launched imminently onto the cinema screen. Aside from Fleming's obvious
skill as an imaginative writer Felton was impressed too by his incisive attention to detail.
This skill, along with his ability to create completely believable environments through the use of
rich descriptive pros, led Felton to view Fleming as a potential collaborator with whom he might
develop his latest idea.
In the autumn of 1962, after a creative meeting between the two
talented men in New York, a name was decided upon for the lead character in the proposed
series, Napoleon Solo. Further to this Fleming would sketch out a background to the character
as well as a number of adventures in which Solo might possibly become embroiled. This creative
coupling would sadly bear no further fruit as Fleming became dogged with health problems
along with an increasingly stronger commitment to Eon Productions and their interpretation of
his beloved James Bond.

Following the amicable parting Felton turned to renowned television writer/producer Sam Rolfe
to build upon the foundations which both Fleming and he had laid. Rolfe welcomed the
challenge of adding flesh to the bones of Napoleon Solo and to the organisation under who's
jurisdiction the character would operate. The writer did so with such aplomb that the characters
and concepts to which television viewers were first introduced on September 22 1964 were very
much those of the fertile mind of Sam Rolfe.
Indeed NBC, who had begun to back away from the project following Fleming's departure, gave a
pilot episode the green light on the strength of Sam Rolfe's outlines for the proposed series.
After some eighteen months of development the project which had been referred to variously as
SOLO-CITIES AROUND THE WORLD, MR. SOLO and IAN FLEMING'S SOLO finally went before the
cameras with the shooting title of simply, SOLO. Arena Productions commenced filming on
SOLO's pilot episode, 'The Vulcan Affair', in November 1963.
The pilot was approved by the network and filming for the series proper began in early June
1964 with Robert Vaughn, David McCallum and Leo G. Carroll assuming the three leading roles.
Nobody connected to the series could possibly have foreseen that within a year the World would
experience the phenomenon that was THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E..

Remembered this from the Special features of my The Man From UNCLE movie Box set.
( Strangely Five films in the set But Eight made ? ) and for some reason the Extras are PDFs

"I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Loved the show as a kid, I saw it before I saw any James Bond...

Dalton & Connery rule. Brozz was cool. Craig is too.
#1.TLD/LTK 2.TND 3.QOS 4.GF 5.DN/GE 6.SP 7.FRWL 8.TB/TMWTGG 9.TWINE 10.YOLT

17

Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

BBC2 Used to show them all the Time, Watched them
Many times, Late night after closing time.  ajb007/biggrin

"I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

More recently they turned up on TCM. Yes it annoyed me they only had 5 of the 8 in the box set, especially as the missing 3 were all excellent.

"How was your lamb?" "Skewered. One sympathises."

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Looking at imdb for "To trap a spy", It states that Richard Kiel
Played a Heavy but it was uncredited.   ajb007/biggrin

"I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Charmed & Dangerous wrote:

More recently they turned up on TCM. Yes it annoyed me they only had 5 of the 8 in the box set, especially as the missing 3 were all excellent.

But weren't the last three sort of campy, like Batman?

Dalton & Connery rule. Brozz was cool. Craig is too.
#1.TLD/LTK 2.TND 3.QOS 4.GF 5.DN/GE 6.SP 7.FRWL 8.TB/TMWTGG 9.TWINE 10.YOLT

21

Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

I remember seeing The Man From UNCLE on BBC2 in the 1990s too. Can all the episodes from the TV series be purchasede on Region 2 DVD as of now? Or are they only on Region 1? Thanks in advance if anyone here knows the answer to this one.  ajb007/smile

"The tough man of the world. The Secret Agent. The man who was only a silhouette." - Ian Fleming, Moonraker (1955).

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

chrisisall wrote:
Charmed & Dangerous wrote:

More recently they turned up on TCM. Yes it annoyed me they only had 5 of the 8 in the box set, especially as the missing 3 were all excellent.

But weren't the last three sort of campy, like Batman?

Originally UNCLE wasn't campy in season 1, but towards the end of season 2 it was influenced by the massive success of Batman so some episodes veered towards camp. The whole of season 3 was spectaculars campy, but they brought it back to earth for season 4 when the fans started leaving... But by then it was too late.

The missing three films then were "To Trap a Spy"  - the first film in the series, an excellent spy adventure; "One of our Spies is Missing" which was a little, umm, flamboyant being from I think the third season; and "the Spy in the Green Hat" from the excellent fourth season.

"How was your lamb?" "Skewered. One sympathises."

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

SILHOUETTE MAN wrote:

I remember seeing The Man From UNCLE on BBC2 in the 1990s too. Can all the episodes from the TV series be purchasede on Region 2 DVD as of now? Or are they only on Region 1? Thanks in advance if anyone here knows the answer to this one.  ajb007/smile

Sadly not. - you can onl get the 5 double-length tv episodes which were theatrically released as movies, on R2 DVD... Plus the 'return of the Man from UNCLE' TV movie.

"How was your lamb?" "Skewered. One sympathises."

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Charmed & Dangerous wrote:

Sadly not. - you can onl get the 5 double-length tv episodes which were theatrically released as movies, on R2 DVD... Plus the 'return of the Man from UNCLE' TV movie.

ALERT! You can get all 8 R1 here http://www.amazon.com/Man-From-U-N-C-L- … B005JJCMNU

Now to save up!

Dalton & Connery rule. Brozz was cool. Craig is too.
#1.TLD/LTK 2.TND 3.QOS 4.GF 5.DN/GE 6.SP 7.FRWL 8.TB/TMWTGG 9.TWINE 10.YOLT

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Re: Fleming and The Man from UNCLE

Deadline is reporting that Armie Hammer is set to star with Tom Cruise in The Man From U.N.C.L.E. remake. Hammer will play a version of Illya Kuryakin, the role played by David McCallum in the 1960's TV spy series.

'Lone Ranger' Armie Hammer To Star With Tom Cruise In 'Man From U.N.C.L.E.'
http://www.deadline.com/2013/04/lone-ra … u-n-c-l-e/

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