Ghost Story (TV series)

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Ghost Story / Circle of Fear
Ghost Story
DVD cover
Genre Anthology
Presented by Sebastian Cabot (1972)
Theme music composer Billy Goldenberg
Composer(s) Billy Goldenberg
Robert Prince
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 22 + 1 pilot (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s) William Castle
Producer(s) Joel Rogosin
Running time approx. 50 minutes
Production company(s) William Castle Productions
Distributor Screen Gems
Sony Pictures Television
Release
Original channel NBC
Audio format Monaural
Original release

March 17, 1972 (pilot)

September 15, 1972 (1972-09-15) – March 30, 1973 (1973-03-30)

Ghost Story (later retitled Circle of Fear) is an American television anthology series that aired for one season on NBC from 1972 to 1973. Executive-produced by William Castle, Ghost Story initially featured supernatural entities such as ghosts, vampires, and witches. By mid-season, low ratings led to a title change and a shift—for the most part—away from paranormal themes.

Ghost Story[edit]

Ghost Story was hosted by Sebastian Cabot as Winston Essex, the owner of a mysterious hotel named Mansfield House.[1] Cabot's introductions were filmed in the Hotel del Coronado near San Diego, California.[2] A pilot episode aired in March 1972 as one half of a NBC Friday night double feature the other half was movin on http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0458021/; the series premiered in September.[1][3] Ghost Story dealt exclusively with ghosts, vampires, witches, and other supernatural elements.[4][5] The show's format and tone drew comparisons to NBC's Night Gallery and ABC's The Sixth Sense.[3][6] Guest stars included Helen Hayes, Jason Robards, Patricia Neal, William Windom, Gena Rowlands, Carolyn Jones, Melvyn Douglas, and Jodie Foster.[6][7]

Circle of Fear[edit]

After 13 episodes, Ghost Story was renamed Circle of Fear beginning with the January 5, 1973 episode.[5][8][9] The change was necessary, according to executive producer William Castle, because of low ratings. "I changed the show for one reason only -- to get picked up next season," Castle said. "Obviously our rating is not enough to get renewed. I think we've just got to get a formula that will help us." He added that the title change came from the head of the production company Screen Gems. Additionally, Cabot was dropped as the presenter.[8] This reworked version lasted nine further episodes.[5][10]

DVD releases[edit]

Two episodes of the series were included as bonuses in the The William Castle Film Collection 2009 DVD box set. On May 1, 2012, Sony released Ghost Story (a.k.a. Circle of Fear) - The Complete Series on DVD through its manufacture on demand (MOD) program.[11]

Name Ep # Region 1
The Complete Series 23 May 1, 2012

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Brian Keith, Sebastian Cabot Back in 2 New Series". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. 1972-09-15. p. 10. 
  2. ^ Perry, Jeb H. (1991). Screen Gems: A History of Columbia Pictures Television from Cohn to Coke, 1948-1983. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield. p. 91. ISBN 978-0810824874. 
  3. ^ a b Buck, Jerry (1972-03-01). "Television Shows on Supernatural Lure Viewers; More Due Next Season". The Telegraph. p. 26. 
  4. ^ Brooks, Tim; Marsh, Earle (2007). The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows, 1946-Present (9 ed.). Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield. p. 533. ISBN 978-0345497734. 
  5. ^ a b c Clute, John; Grant, John (1999). The Encyclopedia of Fantasy. New York: St. Martin's Press. p. 408. ISBN 978-0312198695. 
  6. ^ a b "'Ghost Story' Is Eerie New Series". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. 1972-08-20. p. TV Week-9. 
  7. ^ "'Ghost Story', 'Banyon' Best". The Item. 1972-11-10. p. 7B. 
  8. ^ a b Buck, Jerry (1973-01-02). "Television's Fascination With Ghost Stories Ends". The Daytona Beach News-Journal. p. 16. 
  9. ^ Berard, Jeanette M.; Englund, Klaudia (2009). Television Series and Specials Scripts, 1946-1992: A Catalog of the American Radio Archives Collection. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company. p. 58. ISBN 978-0786433483. 
  10. ^ Jones, Stephen; Ackerman, Forrest (2000). The Essential Monster Movie Guide: A Century of Creature Features on Film, TV, and Video. New York: Billboard Books. p. 163. ISBN 978-0823079360. 
  11. ^ Lambert, David (2012-03-26). "'Ghost Story' - The Show Also Known as 'Circle of Fear' is Getting a 'Complete' Release!". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Retrieved 2012-03-28. 

External links[edit]