1 9 5 4 – 1 9 5 8 (USA)
166 x 60 minute episodes
Climax! was one of the longer-running dramatic series aired on network television during the 1950s.
Hosted by William Lundigan – who was joined by permanent co-host Mary Costa in the summer of 1956 – it presented a one-hour drama each week originating from CBS’ facilities in Hollywood.
When it first went on the air, Climax! was broadcast live every week, but over time it was filmed (and later taped). Even in its last season, however, there were several live episodes broadcast.
Among the plays aired were adaptations of A Farewell to Arms, with Guy Madison and Diana Lynn; Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, with Michael Rennie playing the dual role, and Casino Royale, with Barry Nelson playing American CIA agent James Bond and Aussie-born Michael Pate as his British sidekick Clarence Leiter (before the character eventually became American and changed his name to ‘Felix’). Hollywood veteran Peter Lorre played the evil cardsharp, Le Chiffre.