September 18, 1978: The Sandbaggers first broadcast on ITV

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The Sandbaggers (1978-1980)

The Sandbaggers (1978-1980) is a British television drama series about men and women on the front lines of the Cold War. The Sandbaggers examines the effect of the espionage game on the personal and professional lives of British and American intelligence specialists. The series was produced by Yorkshire Television.

The theme music was composed by Roy Budd (Get Carter, The Wild Geese).

Neil D. Burnside, played by Roy Marsden, is Director of Operations in Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service (abbreviated ‘SIS’—the organisation is also known as ‘MI6’, although that name is never uttered in the series). Burnside oversees a small, elite group of British intelligence officers nicknamed the “Sandbaggers”. This group is composed of highly trained officers whose work includes dangerous missions that tend to be politically sensitive or especially vital, such as escorting defectors across borders, carrying out assassinations (sandbagging), or rescuing other operatives who are in trouble behind the Iron Curtain.

Also appearing were Sue Holderness (Only Fools and Horses), Diane Keen, and Michael Cashman (EastEnders).

Find out more at Wikipedia*, and IMDb*.

Sources: Wikipedia* (information, pictures etc), IMDb* (movie release dates), and YouTube* (videos) unless stated otherwise.

*Prof Nostalgia & the20thcentury.today are not responsible for external links

September 15, 1978: Holocaust 2000 opens in US cinemas

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Holocaust 2000 (1977)

Holocaust 2000 (aka The Chosen or Rain of Fire) is a horror film starring Kirk Douglas.

The world will be destroyed in a rain of fire. It is written.

Despite doomsday warnings from throngs of locals, wealthy industrialist Robert Caine makes the controversial decision to build a nuclear power plant near a sacred cave in the Middle East. But before Caine can reap the benefits of his latest bid for global domination, he discovers that his son, Angel, is the Antichrist, who is planning to use his father’s project to trigger the end of the world.

Notable cast & crew

  • Kirk Douglas, “Robert Caine”
  • Simon Ward, “Angel Caine”
  • Anthony Quayle, “Professor Griffith”
  • Virginia McKenna, “Eva Caine”
  • Geoffrey Keen, “Gynecologist”
  • Ennio Morricone, soundtrack

Selections from the soundtrack by Ennio Morricone

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Source of information, pictures etc is Wikipedia* unless stated otherwise.

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September 15, 1978: Cheech & Chong go Up In Smoke

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Cheech & Chong’s Up in Smoke (1978)

It will make you feel very funny!

Up in Smoke is an American stoner comedy film directed by Lou Adler and Cheech & Chong‘s first feature-length film. It stars Cheech Marin, Tommy Chong, Edie Adams, Strother Martin, Stacy Keach, and Tom Skerritt.

Cheech & Chong had been a counterculture comedy team for about ten years before they started reworking some of their material for their first film. Much of the film was shot in Los Angeles, California, including scenes set in Tijuana, while scenes set on the Mexican border were actually filmed at the border in Yuma, Arizona.

While negatively received upon its release, Up in Smoke is credited with establishing the stoner comedy genre. It’s now considered a classic.

Released Sep 15, 1978 (US); Oct 18, 1979 (UK)

Find out more at Wikipedia* and IMDb*.

Soundtrack

Sources: Wikipedia* (information, pictures etc), IMDb* (movie release dates), and YouTube* (videos) unless stated otherwise.

*Prof Nostalgia & the20thcentury.today are not responsible for external links

September, 1978: Dr Who Annual 1979 in all good bookshops

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The Dr Who Annual 1979

The Dr Who Annual 1979 was the 13th Doctor Who annual published by World Distributors, released in September 1978. The hardback cost £1.50 and featured the Fourth Doctor and Leela.

It contained some text stories, a couple of comic strips, and some features and puzzles.

Find out more*

Source of information, pictures etc is the TARDIS Data Core* unless stated otherwise.

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September 14, 1978: Mork & Mindy first broadcast

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Mork & Mindy (1978-1982)

Mork & Mindy is an American sitcom that aired on ABC. A spin-off after a highly successful episode of Happy Days, it starred Robin Williams as Mork, an extraterrestrial who comes to Earth from the planet Ork in a small, one-Orkan egg-shaped spaceship. Pam Dawber co-starred as Mindy McConnell, his human friend and roommate, and later his wife and the mother of his child.

Mork appears in the Happy Days season five episode “My Favorite Orkan”, which first aired in February 1978 and is a take on the 1960s sitcom My Favorite Martian. The show wanted to feature a spaceman in order to capitalise on the popularity of the then recently released Star Wars film. Williams’ character, Mork, attempts to take Richie Cunningham back to his planet of Ork as a human specimen, but his plan is foiled by Fonzie. In the initial broadcast of this episode, it all turned out to be a dream that Richie had, but when Mork proved so popular, the ending in the syndicated version was re-edited to show Mork erasing the experience from everyone’s minds, thus meaning the event had actually happened and was not a dream.

Notable Cast & Crew

  • Robin Williams, “Mork”
  • Pam Dawber, “Mindy McConnell”
  • Conrad Janis, “Fred McConnell”
  • Tom Poston, “Franklin Delano Bickley”
  • Jonathan Winters, “Mearth”
  • Morgan Fairchild, “Susan Taylor” (season 1)
  • Robert Donner, “Exidor”
  • Corey Feldman, “Billy” (season 3)
  • Logan Ramsey, “Arnold W*nker” (season 1)
  • Garry Marshall, co-creator, co-executive producer

Find out more*

Source of information, pictures etc is Wikipedia* unless stated otherwise.

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September 10, 1978: The Return of the Saint first airs on ITV

1978-The_Return_of_the_Saint-WikipediaReturn of the Saint was a British action-adventure television series starring Ian Ogilvy that aired for one season in 1978 and 1979 in Britain on ITV, and was also broadcast on CBS in the United States. It was co-produced by ITC Entertainment and the Italian broadcaster RAI and ran for 24 episodes.

Return of the Saint is a revival/updating of The Saint, a programme based upon the stories of Leslie Charteris that had originally aired from 1962 to 1969, and starred Roger Moore as Simon Templar (the character, in turn, had been introduced by Charteris in a series of novels and short stories dating back to 1928). An independently wealthy, somewhat mysterious ‘do-gooder’ known as ‘The Saint’. Simon Templar is shown travelling around Britain and Europe, helping out the people he encounters, though he is also often summoned by past acquaintances.

The series borrowed a few storytelling elements from its predecessor. Once again, each episode began with Simon narrating an introduction to set the scene for viewers, and each pre-credit sequence ended with an animated halo appearing above Templar’s head as he was identified. Return also made a recurring reference to the 1930s–40s film series, and the 1940s radio series that starred Vincent Price as Templar: just before the opening credits begin, a short musical phrase is heard that is not part of the theme music for the Return of the Saint, but is the character’s signature theme from film and radio.

Other than these cosmetic touches, there is no continuity implied between the Ogilvy and Moore series.

The first story, “The Judas Game”, featured British actress Judy Geeson. Other stars making appearances include Joss Ackland, Kate O’Mara, Burt Kwouk, Ian Hendry, Christopher Timothy, George Cole, Cathering Schell, Linda Thorson, Gayle Hunnicutt, Britt Ekland, Mel Ferrer and Sam Wanamaker.

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Source of information, pictures etc is Wikipedia* unless stated otherwise.

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September 9, 1978: Boney M take Night Flight to Venus via the No 1 spot in the UK albums chart

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Night Flight To Venus (1978) by Boney M.

Nightflight to Venus is the third studio album by Euro-Caribbean group Boney M., and was released July 28, 1978. The album became a major success in continental Europe, Scandinavia, and Canada, topping most of the album charts during the second half of 1978. It also became their first UK number one album, holding the top spot for 4 weeks, and getting certified Platinum. In Canada, it received nomination for 1980 Juno Award in a category ‘International Album of the Year’. Nightflight to Venus includes their worldwide hits “Rivers of Babylon” and “Brown Girl in the Ring”, a double A-sided single that topped the UK singles chart and has sold over 2 million copies there. In the UK, “Rasputin” and “Painter Man” both reached the Top 10.

Find out more*

Source of information, pictures etc is Wikipedia* unless stated otherwise.

*Prof Nostalgia & the20thcentury.today are not responsible for external links