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Adventures of Superman
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TV Series
    (September 19, 1952-September 28, 1958)
    Aired in syndication (1952-58) and on ABC (1958)
    George Reeves as Clark Kent/Superman
    Phyllis Coates as Lois Lane (1952-53)
    Noel Neill as Lois Lane (1953-58)
    Jack Larson as Jimmy Olsen
    John Hamilton as Perry White
    Premise: Superman fights for truth, justice and the American way
    Kirk Alyn, who had been Superman in the movies, refused to reprise the role on the small screen.
    The stars ended up typecast in their roles.
    The cast members had restrictive contracts that kept them from doing much outside work even though a season's worth of episodes were shot in only two months.
    Characters always wore the same clothes so multiple episodes could be shot at the same time.
    Flubbed lines and other errors often made it to air, with producer Whitney Ellsworth admitting, 'We were often forced to use what we had, rather than relight the set and go again.'
    Despite George Reeves' suicide, the producers considering continuing the show as 'Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen,' focusing on Larson's character, with Superman's appearances created through recycling footage of Reeves and shots of a stunt double filmed from behind.
    Despite the low budgets, the special effects for the flying sequences were advanced for the period.
    George Reeves did his own stunts.
    Beginning with the third season, episodes were filmed in color, as the producers correctly guessed that they would become more valuable once color TV became standard.
    Reeves stood by Robert Shayne (who had a recurring role as Police Inspector Bill Henderson) when Shayne was accused of being a Communist due to his political activism in the Screen Actors Guild.
    Jack Larson had the good taste to refuse to make 'Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen.'

Credit: C. Fishel


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