MovieChat Forums > CallanĀ (1974) Discussion > difference to original?

difference to original?


is the movie (based on the first episode) very different from the original? i only know the episodes which are officially out on dvd and the movie.
i also posted a message on the callan-series messageboard and would be happy if somebody would respond!
thanks!!

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the main difference is the 'opening out' of scenes ... the pilot was all studio bound and on videotape ... both versions are very good

JoshsDad

'my name is Dad, Josh's Dad'

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Both versions are good, but I would say that the film version is a bit better, becuase of the opening out sections, and the chase sequence, just seems to tell the story better. On the downside it is missing the moody score of the TV series, and Antony Valentine as Toby Meres.

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anthony valentine was not toby meres in the original tv version either .... it was peter bowles !!! i agree that the moodiness was missing from the film and that the chase scene was excellent ... i enjoy them both but have to say that i found woodward's performance in the film more complete

JoshsDad

'my name is Dad, Josh's Dad'

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Yeah I know Peter Bowles was the first Toby Meres, but he wasn't the best!! Anthony Valentine did the sneering public schoolboy act a lot better. I agree with you Woodward's performance comes across a lot better in the film, perhaps because he had been playing the character for sometime now. The big band music sucks through!

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Valentine was indeed the best Meres, a complete b'stard but you had to smile along with some of his dialogue, very sneery and (if i am allowed to say it) public school etc. I also enjoyed the character of Cross in the later episodes, Meres without the class, excellent acting by Patrick Mower. I also agree about the music, what's with the Larry Adler stuff !!!!! I thought John Barry-esque music would have been more suitable, or something edgy, like the music for 'Edge of Darkness'.

JoshsDad

'my name is Dad, Josh's Dad'

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Yeah I enjoyed Cross as well. A young upstart who has no respect for Callan whatsoever (Meres did at least respect Callan a bit as he was good at his job). Even Hunter (William Squire version) has to put Cross in his place at times. I haven't seen any of the fourth series yet,*SPOILER ALERT* but I hear that Cross goes off the rails in a big way. I don't want to know how as I will see them soon. *SPOILER ALERT* He was particulary bad in "Summoned to Appear" when the innocent bystander gets killed!

Good that we both agree on the music. Also what is slightly different is Lonely and the Greek, when he gets the gun off of him and the Greek goes after Callan. With one David Prowse as his bodyguard!

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I promise not to tell how Cross gets it .............
I remember the bit where Callan kills Prowse, it went all slow motion and psychedelic, didn't like it at the time but when I saw it again recently on dvd i understood more why it was done that way and felt it quite effective.
I have some excellent dvd copies of the existing episodes of series 1 and 2 plus the pilot, and the ClearVision dvd set of series 3.
If you dont mind me asking, how and when will you see series 4? I've not seen it since it was repeated on TV in the early 80s. Some people are selling it on e-bay for huge sums but I am dubious of the quality.
I actually watched 'Summoned to Appear' a few weeks ago as it is one of my favourite episodes .... yes, Cross is indeed a bad boy in that one.
Have you a dvd of the film?
If you only have the Prism edition I can recommend an Australian issue from Umbrella Entertainment. It has chapters (unlike the Prism ed) and also contains the Woodward interview. The picture quality is the same but the artwork, however, is far superior.
You can get it via e-bay for about six quid inc postage.

JoshsDad

'my name is Dad, Josh's Dad'

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Soemone is going to up them on UKNOVA. It is a "legal" bittorrent site, in that they don't allow anything released on DVD to be uploaded on there. I have the Movie on DVD (Region 2) it has an interview with Woodward, as well as the box set of series 3. I got the pilot, remaining 2 epiosdes of series 1, and the remaining epiosdes of series 2 off of UKNOVA. The person who is uploading Callan the fourth series took them off of a cable channel over there, and someone is going to upload "The Wet Job". I don't think that has been ever released on any format.

The DVDs could have done with a few more extras such as cast commentary.

I have seen a few episodes up on EBay, but they by the time you bid on them the cost goes up so much! That's how I got series 3, because it's deleted now.

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i remember series 4 but have never seen 'wet job'
reviews/reports are very mixed but as it is 'callan' it must be watchable at least
i just got hold of a series called '1990' which laso has edward woodward in it
made in 1977 its about a 'future' britain run by a big brother style govt.
watched i have watched so far is very good
its a real shame tv no longer produces drama of the quality of 'callan' etc
at least we can watch this old stuff again and again

JoshsDad

'my name is Dad, Josh's Dad'

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Yes I have heard of 1990, quite recently, but have never seen it. I just watched the first episode of the fourth series today. I have never seen "The Wet Job" either, and have heard that it doesn't have quite the same magic as the series, I hope it doesn't have the big band music on it!

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or that damned harmonica !!!!
what did you think of the 1st of series 4
i watched an episode of series 2 this afternoon, 'most promising girl of her year', superb stuff

JoshsDad

'my name is Dad, Josh's Dad'

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I thought it was brillant. What a **** Cross is, scaring Lonely like that! Looking forward to the second episode but bittorrenting isn't quick! A shame a lot of the older series episodes were wiped!

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yeah, i often revisit the ones i have on dvd, wonderful stuff
i just acquired patrick mower's series 'target' from 1977/78 on dvd
he plays a cop called hackett who is not afraid to bend the rules
it's a real period piece and is great fun to watch
i remember seeing him on stage in 1999 doing a comedy with dennis waterman from 'the sweeney' ... not a great play but watching those old sparring partners was fantastic

JoshsDad

'my name is Dad, Josh's Dad'

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Have you seen any of another spy series from the 1970's called "The Sandbaggers". I have only just heard about it, and am wondering whether I should order it on DVD or not. Good to see Patrick is still going strong, like I said a shame there were no cast commentaries or interviews on the DVD set. Did you actually see Callan (The Film)at the cinema when it first came out?

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'the sandbaggers' was an exciting series as i recall. i haven't seen it since it was last on tv in the 80s but i remember looking forward to it every week (ah those nostalgic pre-vcr days). it featured two excellent actors, roy marsden (who also played inspector dalgleish in the original series of pd james mysteries during the 70s and 80s) and ray lonnen (who starred in the superb mini series 'harry's game'). I did indeed see 'callan' at the cinema, it was quite a hit here in the uk. patrick mower now has a regular role in a popular soap opera 'emmerdale' and looks much the same as he did in 'callan', but without the 70s mullet haircut. i think you will enjoy 'sandbaggers'. i can also recommend two other 70s series 'public eye' and 'hazell'. both are private detective series and are two of my personal favourites. both are available on region 2 dvd.

JoshsDad

'my name is Dad, Josh's Dad'

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[deleted]

The first novel is much better than any of the dramatisations. The best novel in the series of 5 is Russian Roulette. I was a pen-friend of the author and creator of Callan, James Mitchell, for about 16 years before he died. God rest his soul.

If you read his other books, you will see that Callan has many predecessors, like John Craig for instance. Plus, Jack Ford in 'When the Boat Comes In' is also a relative, I think.

S.

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Where can I get dvds of series 1 and 2?.I've got the clear vision box set of 3, mistakenly referred to as Series 1. Confusing isn't it? 1 and 2must star Anthony Valentine as Meres. Are they in colour?

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what's left of series one and two are available through sellers on e-bay, ands they are all in black and white
JoshsDad

'my name is Dad, Josh's Dad'

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VERY late reply to this post, but I just last night watched "A Magnum..." for the first time and I was struck by the following:

In the original teleplay, Callan decides to kill Schneider with a Noguchi Magnum after discovering that Shcneider is running guns for the corporation. In the film, this reference has been deleted. However there is a scene in which Hunter surprises Callan as he visits the library to research the Noguchi corporation.

It occurs to me that without the Schneider/Noguchi connection there seems no reason for Callan to be interested in where the gun came from, or Noguchi itself, and I wonder if it's possible that this scene is a leftover from an earlier script draft that preserved the original plot twist?

Just a thought (if anyone's still out there...).

"Duck, I says..."

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