"The basic message of Gunsmoke was that there's going to be the bad and there's going to be the good. And most of the time, the good will win out. That's an old theme. There are no new themes, it's just the way you do them. It's the way you bring fresh characters to that theme."
About This Interview
In his two-hour Archive interview, Dennis Weaver (1924-2006) reminisces about growing up in Missouri during the Great Depression, and remembers working as a migrant worker in his summers. He talks about his move to New York and his early acting experience, on the stage and on television. He describes his move to Hollywood under contract with Universal, and his move from feature films into television in the mid-1950s. Next, he speaks at length about his co-starring role on the long-running classic Gunsmoke, detailing the origins of his character Chester's limp and country bumpkin accent. He also talks about his subsequent work on series including Kentucky Jones and Gentle Ben, and discusses his leading role on NBC's McCloud. Finally, he speaks about his more recent work, from movies made-for-television including Duel to the series Stone and Buck Jones. Henry Colman conducted the interview in Malibu, CA on September 24, 2002.