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- Steve Forrest & Sue
Lloyd star in The Baron
Monty Berman formed a company called Filmaker to make The
Baron, based loosely on the characters created by the author John
Creasey (writing as Anthony Morton). Terry Nation was recruited
as story editor and Dennis Spooner the scriptwriter. The American actor
Steve Forrest was cast as John Mannering (The Baron),
Lloyd played Mannering's assistant Cordelia Winfield of
the Special Branch Diplomatic Service (SBDS).
Ferris had initially played David Marlowe, the manager of Mannering's
London antiques shop, but this character was phased-out after only a
few months into the production. Colin Gordon plays John Alexander
Templeton-Green, Cordelia's boss at the SBDS. The Baron, made by Lew Grade's
Incorporated Television Company (ITC) in 1966 was the first ITC
production to be made in colour. The location filming for The
Baron took place mainly in the Borehamwood area of Hertfordshire
near the Elstree studios where the interior scenes were shot.
Although the character of John
Mannering is based on John Creasey's original creation, in the
television series John Mannering is a wealthy un-married Texan
rancher. John Creasey's original character is British, married and a
former jewel thief.
Mannering, ostensibly an antiques dealer, operates covertly as an
agent, in an informal capacity for John Alexander Templeton-Green
(Head of the British Diplomatic Intelligence Service). Mannering receives his
assignments from Templeton-Green and in
recognition of his services, Mannering has Diplomatic Immunity
wherever his travels take him.
car is a silver Jensen CV-8 Mk II, 'BAR 1', whilst his assistant
drives a less immpresive Daf 33. In one episode Something For a
Rainy Day, a white Jaguar is seen plummeting over a cliff; this
scene apparently filmed especially for The Baron was deemed too
expensive to be used only once and so this clip can be seen in other
episodes and in other television series.
Creasey's original books, Mannering is British and married. In
his transformation to an unmarried Texan, the producers of the show
decided that The Baron would be named after the cattle ranch
once run by Mannering's grandfather. In John Creasey's
original stories John Mannering is a former jewel-thief. Early
series, Mannering is assisted by David Marlowe, but
after pressure from the American networks the Marlowe character
was dropped and replaced by Cordelia Winfield who appears in
the first episode.
of 30 x 60 minute episodes of The Baron were produced, and the
series was originally broadcast in the UK from September 28 1966 until
April 1967. The show was also sold in the USA and elswhere. The theme
tune for the series is by Edwin Astley.