Document Type: 
Document Number (FOIA) /ESDN (CREST): 
Release Decision: 
Original Classification: 
Document Page Count: 
Document Creation Date: 
November 17, 2016
Document Release Date: 
July 14, 2000
Sequence Number: 
Case Number: 
Publication Date: 
September 12, 1965
Content Type: 
PDF icon CIA-RDP75-00001R000400290033-7.pdf101.67 KB
Approved*VRfteaQ00/08/8$P TAI ORNFMP M-M9 STATINTL CPYRGHT CAN four fellows who" look like football players find. happiness to- gether in Laredo? That will be the question to be solved this fall by the producers of Universal and NBC's new 90- minute color Western titled, of course, "Laredo." Laredo, in essence, is ;;remake of "The Three Musketegrs." One of the four principals is Bill Smith. It is, np his physical (he stands 6 feet pr his facial qualities that amaze you, but the fact that he's probably the first CIA agent who ever became an actor. He was. wearing a rust-colored sports jacket that he had dug out of an old suitcase from his Air Force days in Germany. We were having lunch in a Sunset Strip cafe. Three "Laredos" were al- ready in the can but production on the series had been stopped so network nabobs could examine the show and suggest changes, of which there was already a page- ful. One major change will be to dress the four more distinctly and give each a somewhat diffe t personality. For while Nevp Brand, who plays one of th,' looks mean enough to kill you with his grin and Peter Brown has a certain kind of handsome- ness that can sidetrack you, and 6 feet 5 Phil Carey eats potato chips, there was a certain same- ness about their parts. How did q secret agent become an actor? "It was an accident. I was working as a teaching assistant at U.C.L.A. In Russian Lit. But I couldn't work for the Govern- ment any longer because I had married a girl who wasn't a resident of this country. When you work for any branch of the secret Government service, you cannot be married to an alien. WHEN I was in Germany I met Michele. She was French. We fell in love, got married and, bingo! four years of workings for the Government was ovgF. "Anyway, they were toing this movie and they needed a guy to speak Russian and one of my other professors told me about it and said I should look,,_into the situation because it could mean extra money, and that's how. it all began. "Actually, it's kind of funny be- cause my first 'big, job was in Phil Carey's series 'Asalt Jungle.' He's been a big booster of mine through the years. Every few weeks he'd phone to see how I was and what I was up to. "It's kind of interesting that all the guys who worked on 'Asphalt' are now working for NBC this year. Jack Warden is doing 'Wackiest Ship in the Army' and Arch Johnson is in "Gump Run- amuck.", How does a young man become a secret agent? "I was flunking out of Glendale College. I was a sort of-, hot rod fiend. Actually, too young to un- derstand at the time the impor- tance of a college education. I tried to escape the wrath of my par- ents so I joined the Air Force. I really wanted to become a Ma- rine, but I was 17 and they wouldn't take me. I figured the Air Force was the next best branch of the service. "I was gung ho for the service in those days. That's why I think I did such a good job as a drill instructor. I've changed since. I had what you'd call youthful patriotism. All my buddies were fighting in Korea and I wanted to do the same. I did things by the book, which is not always best. There's no place for compassion in instruction. FOR 13 weeks people get to hate you. It's easier to get things accomplished that way. I learned to divorce myself from the 65 men I was in charge of. I never learned anybody's first name, never spoke to anyone unless it was to reprimand. I never studied anyone unless they had a prob- lem. "After nine months they sent me to language school. When I entered the service they gave me' an aptitude test. Somehow I came- out high in languages. The fol- lowing 14 months I spent eight hours a day studying Russian at Syracuse. And for three months from 8 till 4 every day I did nothing but speak Russian. "Ninety per cent of the people in the program were professors or people getting their doctorates. I was the youngest in the class, 18, and out of 150 people finished the course fourth." Approved For Release 2000/08/03 : CIA-RDP75-00001 R000400290033-7