"We're getting married!"
Two millionaire playboys, one self made, the other born into money must fight crime on behalf of a retired judge or face jail themselves. The Persuaders is one of ITC's most watchable shows.
The idea of an aristocratic Brit partnered by an American self made millionaire was first tested in one of the later episodes of The Saint (The Ex-King of Diamonds). Roger Moore's Saint was paired up with Stuart Damon from The Champions playing a Texan oil tycoon. The experiment seemed to work well so Lew Grade (Head of ITC) tried to sign Rock Hudson as Danny Wilde. He told everybody involved that Roger Moore was set to play the other half of the partnership, Lord Brett Sinclair even though Moore had made it clear that he'd had enough of television and wanted to concentrate on his film career. Eventually Grade signed Tony Curtis as Wilde, went back to Moore and said "You have to do it, England needs the money, Think of The Queen" and a television classic was made.
Unfortunately the series was cancelled after its first season, although the principle cast had signed for up to 5 years. This was partly due to the size of the budget, but mainly because it was scheduled against the hugely popular Mission Impossible. However if the show had proved popular, Moore would have never got to play James Bond! Watch out for guest appearances from (amongst others) Joan Collins, Kate O Mara and Lawrence Naismith as Judge Fulton and a classic theme by John Barry.
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