Reynolds as Dan August.
|Opening theme||"Dan August Theme" by Dave Grusin|
|Composer(s)||Dave Grusin (1.14)
Dave Vincent (1.14, co-composer)
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||1|
|No. of episodes||26|
|Executive producer(s)||Quinn Martin|
|Running time||45 mins.|
|Original release||September 23, 1970– April 8, 1971|
Dan August is a Quinn Martin crime drama series which aired on ABC from September 23, 1970 to April 8, 1971. Burt Reynolds also played the title character. Reruns of the series aired in prime time on CBS from May to October 1973 and from April to June 1975.
Reynolds stars as police lieutenant Dan August who investigates homicide cases in his (fictional) hometown of Santa Luisa, California. (The town is supposedly based on Santa Barbara but was filmed in Oxnard in Ventura County.) Other cast members include Norman Fell as August's partner, Sergeant Charles Wilentz; Richard Anderson as Police Chief Untermeyer; Ned Romero as Sergeant Joe Rivera; and Ena Hartman as Katie Grant. Barney Martin and Meg Foster had recurring roles.
Guest-stars turned in many memorable performances on the series, including Diana Muldaur in the pilot episode "Murder by Proxy"; Martin Sheen in "Dead Witness to a Killing"; Dabney Coleman in "The King Is Dead"; Larry Hagman in "The Law"; John Ritter in "Quadrangle of Death"; and Harrison Ford, Billy Dee Williams, Mickey Rooney, and Gary Busey in "The Manufactured Man". Hungarian-born Ahna Capri played Linda Perry in "Death Chain" and "Prognosis: Homicide". Other guest actors to appear on the show include Michael Ontkean, Joan Hackett, Vera Miles, Annette O'Toole, Gary Collins, Ricardo Montalbán, Ford Rainey, Carolyn Jones, Fritz Weaver, John Marley, Janice Rule, Alexandra Hay, Norman Alden, Joan Van Ark, Bradford Dillman, Geraldine Brooks, Donna Mills, Victor French, Richard Basehart, Sherry Lansing, Monte Markham, Jan-Michael Vincent, Stephen Collins, Laurence Luckinbill, Lee Meriweather, Sal Mineo, Fernando Lamas, Ellen Corby, Susan Oliver, John Beck, Michael Pataki and Diana Hyland.
Relation to other works
The series was based on Quinn Martin's 1970 made-for-TV movie The House on Greenapple Road, starring Janet Leigh. The film was based on Harold R. Daniels's 1966 mystery novel of the same name. It was directed by Robert Day from a script by George Eckstein. Christopher George played Dan August, with Keenan Wynn as Sergeant Wilentz and Barry Sullivan as Chief Untermeyer. Ned Romero and Ena Hartman were the only actors in the film who reprised their roles in the series. The film also featured Julie Harris, Walter Pidgeon, Ed Asner, Eve Plumb, Lynda Day, Joanne Linville, Tim O'Connor, Mark Richman, and William Windom.
While not initially popular enough to be renewed for a second season, Dan August became a fan favorite in reruns, particularly after Reynolds' popularity surged in the mid-1970s with his escalating movie career. CBS re-aired the series both on The CBS Late Movie and in prime time during summer "rerun seasons" of both 1973 and 1975 to larger audiences.
At this time, there are no plans to release the series on DVD. However, there is an online petition from fans asking Shout Factory to procure and release the series.
In 1980, a movie titled Dan August: Once Is Never Enough aired on ABC. In fact, this was a re-editing of episode 15, "Death Chain", with episode 25, "Prognosis: Homicide". ABC and Quinn Martin productions were looking to further capitalize on the success of Burt Reynolds, at the time riding high on the international success of the Smokey and the Bandit films and the public's fascination with his private life with actress Sally Field. Subsequently, another television film, editing together the Diana Muldaur and Dabney Coleman episodes ("Murder by Proxy" and "The King Is Dead"), produced Dan August: The Jealousy Factor.
- Marill, Alvin H. Movies Made for Television: The Telefeature and the Mini-Series 1964-1986. Page 190.
- Brooks, Tim and Marsh, Earle. The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network TV Shows 1946-Present (4th edition). New York, Ballantine Books, 1988. Pages 181-182.