Simon Maccorkindale As Greg Reardon

Discussion in 'Falcon Crest' started by Angela Channing, Jul 16, 2019.

  1. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator

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    It always struck me as strange that the title card used for Simon MacCorkindale differed from the others (with the exception of Susan Sullivan) in that he was billed as "Simon MacCorkindale as Greg Reardon" rather than just his name as was the case for almost everyone else.

    [​IMG]

    Title credits (when not done in alphabetical order) usually show the most significant stars in the first few positions and for Falcon Crest this was Jane Wyman, Robert Foxworth, Lorenzo Lamas and David Selby. The final position is often goes to an actor who is considered more significant than the remaining cast and to emphasise this, they are credited along with the name of their character. This is how Susan Sullivan was billed throughout her time on the show and it was the same for Joan Collins on Dynasty, as another example.

    Simon MacCorkindale was given the second last position and billed with his character name to highlight his involvement. I never understood why he was credited like this when he wasn't a major star in the US and his role in Falcon Crest, although important, didn't seem any more important than that of Melissa Agretti or Peter Stavros who were never given a special billing in the credits. The only other person to have been given this treatment was "Gregory Harrison as Michael Sharpe" in the final season which was more understandable as he was arguably the main character in season 9.

    Why did Simon MacCorkindale get credited differently from most of his co-stars when he was on the show?
     
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  2. Toni

    Toni Soap Chat Star

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    Funny you mention that, I never "noticed" the "as Greg Reardon" thingie. What do you mean, that Simon wasn´t a major star? Where were you when "Jaws 3-D" was released...?

    [​IMG]

    (Insert laugh track here...for the awful FX...)​
     
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  3. Richard Channing

    Richard Channing Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    Well, let's not forget he was Manimal! :D

     
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  4. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator

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    Maybe I'm downplaying his stardom but however you look at it, he was never a big a star as Cesar Romero or Mel Ferrer, neither of which got the special billing in the title sequence that Mr MacCorkingdale was given.
     
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  5. tommie

    tommie Soap Chat Star

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    Good agent, basically. This is a contractual thing, but normally only big stars can put their weight on getting special billing.
     
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  6. Matthew Blaisdel

    Matthew Blaisdel Soap Chat Dream Maker

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    Maybe his agency just negotiated well enough for that special credit and a special billing. ;)
     
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  7. Grant Jennings

    Grant Jennings Soap Chat Fan

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    To put things in perspective, one of MacCorkindale's biggest film roles was in "Death on the Nile" opposite Lois Chiles. Chiles (who arguably had a more high profile film career) didn't receive any special billing on "Dallas".
     
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  8. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator

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    I'm sure that's what it was but I'm surprised that the producers agreed to it. I really liked Simon MacCorkindale on Falcon Crest and Greg was a great character but I never thought of him as being one of the key characters nor Simon as being a major star in his own right for them accept such a demand. They really must have wanted him on the show. Perhaps Michael Filerman was a big fan of Manimal.
     
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  9. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator

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    I think Falcon Crest had 3 tiers of stars:
    1. Tier one, at the top - Jane Wyman
    2. Tier two, the main regular stars - Robert Foxworth, Lorenzo Lamas, Susan Sullivan, David Selby and Ana-Alicia
    3. Tier three: the other regular stars - Abby Dalton, Margaret Ladd, William R. Moses, Chao-Li Chi, Cesar Romaro etc.
    So to reflect this in the credits, Jane Wyman is featured first, then the tier 2 actors and finally the tier 3 actors. With there are quite a few actors in tier 2, a major star will end up quite low down the pecking order so one, or sometimes two, is elevated the prestigious final spot with a special "and [insert actor's name] as [insert character's name]" credit to highlight their importance. This format has been used for many shows on TV (eg. Dynasty, Happy Days, Hill Street Blues, The A Team and The Colbys):

    [​IMG]

    It makes sense to give that position to Susan Sullivan but will all due respect to Simon MacCorkindale, I would consider him to be in "Tier 3" so he and his agent did well to get him that credit in the opening titles of Falcon Crest.
     
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  10. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson SoapLand Battles Moderator

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    But the reason why an actor is important may vary. Joan Collins was the star of Dynasty, Barbara Stanwyck was the other Big Name of The Colbys.
    They couldn't place Stephanie Beacham's title card after Charlton Heston's because it was supposed to be the Jeff & Fallon spin-off, not the Jason & Sable dynasty (needless to say, that's exactly how it turned out to be).
    Dynasty didn't have Big Celebrity Actors, and neither did FC apart from JW and the guest stars - and Mel Ferrer too, I guess, but that was obviously a supporting role - so they could bookend the opening credits with an equally important character.

    Whether Simon MacCorkindale's role was more important than Paul Freeman's is debatable, but Gustav Riebmann could never be more than a single season character.
    These things aren't necessarily 100% logical, after all Sarah Douglas didn't get a title card at all in season 3 eventhough Pamela Lynch was that year's equivalent of Greg Reardon (both played by British actors).
     
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  11. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator

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    I agree. I think the importance largely is based on the profile of the actor and/or the significance of the character being played. As Dynasty was basically the Blake, Krystle and Alexis show, it made perfect sense to give the opening 2 spots in the title credits to John Forsythe and Linda Evans and to give Joan Collins the last spot with the "as Alexis" enhancement.

    Mentioning Mel Ferrer is interesting because his role had more or less the same significance as that of Simon MacCorkindale, and Mel was a much higher profile actor but he never got a special title credit.

    However you look at it, Mr MacCorkindale's credit was not consistent with what they did for the other characters/actors and arguably, not justified. As you say, "These things aren't necessarily 100% logical"
     
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  12. tommie

    tommie Soap Chat Star

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    I dunno
    His agents might've had other people in their books that Falcon Crest or Lorimar wanted hence them being able to negotiate such a favourable contract for MacCorkindale. That happens a lot, especially if the agents have faith in their client.
     
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  13. ClassyCo

    ClassyCo Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    The most logical explanation for such billing presumably lies within his contract his agent got for him, I'm sure. The network may or may not have envisioned him as a hopeful drawing card for the show, and therefore wanting to sprinkle something a little special in for him just in case he got them some buzz.

    I don't know. I could be wrong.

    Generally, shows only employ the "and Joan Collins as Alexis" or "Susan Sullivan as Maggie" billing to characters that identify strongly with the audience and therefore generate attention for the show itself. These characters probably weren't always intended as stars or major players in regular episodes or story lines, but eventually became revered as such because of their popularity with the critics or the audience.

    It's a special title to be billed as such.
     
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  14. tommie

    tommie Soap Chat Star

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    It also might solve a problem sometimes - I remember that they got around contracts on Melrose Place when Heather Locklear was suddenly billed as an (eternal) "Special Guest Star"; hence her contract could be handled differently than the "normal" cast members. At the end of the day, it's business.
     
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  15. Jock Og

    Jock Og Soap Chat Fan

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    Undoubtedly a dotted line aspect to his opening credit status. However Robert Foxworth had made reference to an English actress joining the show in the third season, which of course was Superman star Sarah Douglas. Then prior to the start of season 4 an interview was done with David Selby, who commented that two additional English thespians were coming on board (known to us now as Paul Freeman and Simon MacCorkindale). So however seemingly enigmatic Simon's opening credit was there was an effort to publicise the English input into the show.


    Greg has a meeting with Angela, in her study. She wants Chase out of the business and demands that Greg files a lawsuit against him, on the grounds of Phillip's death because he was piloting the jet that fateful night, (a scene from season 4, 1984 - '85):

    Greg: "......He has already lost his licence to fly, thanks to strings you pulled in Washington. Any further harassment of Chase will only draw attention, to a situation you and I know is a farce."

    Angela: "The only farce is Chase Gioberti. He is an airline pilot, not a winemaker."

    Greg: "I suspect he would disagree."

    Angela: "Uh! He loves to go around saying that he is a co-owner. Well where was he when I was trying to build the vineyards, after prohibition ah and where was he when I was trying to pull all this land together? He didn't give a damn about Falcon Crest until he found out it was an empire and then all of a sudden he lays claim to it. Well I'm going to bankrupt him and get my land back. So you file that suit!"

    Greg: "You present quite a case Mrs. Channing. Did you ever consider a career in law?"

    Angela: "Just do as I say. I don't like resistance."

    Greg: "Yeah! I'm beginning to find that out."
     
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  16. Chloe-Fusco

    Chloe-Fusco Soap Chat Active Member

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    Oh yeah Manimal was entertaining just not as entertaining as Falcon Crest, with Angela and her antics.
     
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  17. Gioberti84

    Gioberti84 Soap Chat Active Member

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    Simon MacCorkindale and his agent did exceedingly good business to obtain the billing he obtained. I never thought about the detail you posted before Angela and you're right in terms of gravitas he wasn't any better as an actor than Mel Ferrer or Cesar Romero.
     
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