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Richard Bradford Biog DVD

Saturday, 07 November 2009 12:25

The high point in Richard Bradford’s acting CV came very early in his acting career.  Man in A Suitcase presented him with great critical acclaim for his sensitive and realistic portrayal of McGill, a discredited ex-CIA agent reduced to working for hire as a private investigator. A perfectionist and ‘Method Actor’, Bradford quickly came into conflict with some of the crew and his fellow actors - gaining a reputation for being awkward to work with.

Interviewed in the summer of 2004, he candidly talked about his time working on Man in a Suitcase and the problems he encountered while trying to make what is, for some, one of the finest of ITC’s action/adventure series. He even revealed that he actually took away his entire McGill wardrobe after the series!

Richard Bradford In Character DVDOriginally filmed for Network’s best-selling Man in A Suitcase DVD set, "In Character" features the full interview in which Richard talks with great honesty about his early career, including his time at Lee Strasberg’s highly acclaimed Actors Studio, working with amongst other, Marlon Brando (indeed, he co-starred early on his career with Brando, in the western “The Chase” in 1966).

Before Suitcase, he had guest roles on Gunsmoke and Preview Tonight (an anthology series of pilot episodes, Bradford’s being a western with the unfortunate title Roaring Camp! Bradford would have starred, and the cast included Ian Hendry, famous at the time for The Avengers).

In this interview DVD, there are no clips or other distractions, and the hour and a quarter interview is Bradford ‘unplugged’, revealing who he admired and who he had contempt for amongst the Suitcase cast and crew.

As part of ‘The Method’, the immersing of himself in the McGill character saw him taking on the mood necessary for that particular episode.  As McGill was in a constant struggle with the establishment, the fiction became the reality and the team around him found themselves dealing with the essence of McGill, and not the actor behind the character.

He certainly has no time for the majority of people in the Hollywood establishment, seeing many of them as betraying the values of their art in pursuit of profit.  Indeed, it is only in retrospect that Bradford can see that he was blessed to be given so much leeway in his pursuit of perfection with Man in a Suitcase.  Its British production sensibilities meant he was allowed to get on with things in a way that would never ever be allowed on Hollywood sets.

As Bradford puts it: “I just wanted to do the most real, honest portrayal of a guy... and do things that hadn’t been seen before on television. I really wanted to do that with all my heart and soul”.

Following Man in A Suitcase, he got to star in the pilot for a new series Stateside in 1969 - UMC, which went on to be called Medical Center, running until 1976 – unfortunately, the decision was made that he would not be part of that subsequent series. His best known role in the cinema was in Brian De Palma’s “The Untouchables” in 1987, playing corrupt Irish cop Mike Dorsett, and also taking part in a classic fight scene with Sean Connery. He also played Martin Zzbiske, a semi-regular cast member of Cagney and Lacey. Other Cult TV series to spot him in are The High Chaparral, Mannix, Kojak, BJ and the Bear, Hart to Hart, Midnight Caller, Murder She Wrote, The Commish, Viper, Time Trax, and Earth 2.

Exempt from classification, the running time is 69 minutes, with a RRP of £7.99 and available exclusively from the Network Online Shop.



Last modified on Thursday, 10 May 2012 16:37