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Airdate: 50 Years Of Homicide

Seven pays tribute to an iconic television series with a TV special.

2014-10-18_0049Nostalgic TV fans take note, Seven has scheduled a special 50 Years Of Homicide for next Wednesday night.

Update: Further details now supplied:

Seven Melbourne will air a special tribute to the iconic police drama HOMICIDE this Wednesday night to commemorate 50 years since the series was first shown on television.

Homicide aired from October 1964 until January 1977 on Channel 7 and is understood to be the longest running weekly primetime drama in the history of Australian TV.

Set around the homicide squad of the Victorian Police Force, and with many of the episodes based on real murder cases, the Melbourne-made series featured some of Australia’s most celebrated actors including Jack Thompson, Bill Hunter, Jacki Weaver, Sigrid Thornton and Garry McDonald.

The special, 50 Years of Homicide, is hosted by Daniel MacPherson, whose credits include City Homicide which was inspired by the original hit series.

It includes interviews with Ian Crawford from Crawford Productions as well as the late Leonard Teale and Charles ‘Bud’ Tingwell, while one of the most famous episodes in its history, The Assassin, will also be shown in its entirety.

Homicide was produced by Crawford Productions for 510 episodes, widely regarded as the first major drama series to be produced in Australia when foreign series dominated.

It featured a ‘who’s who’ of stars including John Fegan, Terry McDermott, Leonard Teale, Les Dayman, George Mallaby, Lionel Long, Alwyn Kurts, Norman Yemm, Mike Preston, Gary Day, Charles Tingwell, John Stanton, Don Barker, Dennis Grosvenor, Lex Mitchell, Fred Cullen plus guests including Lorraine Bayly, Graeme Blundell, Anne Charleston, Paul Cronin, Max Cullen, Lynette Curran, John Diedrich, Terence Donovan, Denise Drysdale, Noel Ferrier, Maurie Fields, Sheila Florence, Cornelia Frances, Vivean Gray, David Gulpilil, Noni Hazlehurst, Wendy Hughes, Bill Hunter, Gerard Kennedy, Garry McDonald, Tracey Mann, John Meillon, Gus Mercurio, Jack Thompson, Sigrid Thornton, Rowena Wallace, John Waters, Jacki Weaver and more.

The show soon proved to be a hit with viewers, with its realistic policing scenes helping the local industry to make its mark in television drama. Scores of actors, writers, directors and crew learned their craft working on Homicide (how is this show not in the Logies Hall of Fame please?). Seven’s-own City Homicide was a nod to its forerunner.

Soaps nothwithstanding, it remains Australia’s longest-running drama series.

These days the Crawfords library, which includes Division 4, Carson’s Law, The Sullivans and The Flying Doctors, is owned by WIN Television. It’s not clear if this special has been produced as an edited compilation to promote DVD sales or it has conducted new interviews with former cast.

10:30pm Wednesday October 22 on Seven (Melbourne).

21 Responses

  1. @Sydney2K: Homicide theme is called Victory. Division 4 is Power Drive, Matlock Police is Industry On the Move and The Box is Testing Time (source: The TV Times Record Of Your Top TV Themes – EMI 1974).

  2. @Clint: Crawfords have run into problems releasing The Box on DVD. Andrew Mercado has posted on Facebook that around nine of the black and white episodes are missing and this has delayed the release. A call has gone out for anybody who has copies of those episodes to provide them.

  3. @Lyn – The Homicide DVD’s are not available in stores, so do a search for Crawfords Online and you’ll find them no problems.

    I have all 8 volumes (26 episodes to each on 7 DVD’s) and it is still a great show to watch, so looking forward to this 50 Years Of Homicide special.

  4. I was part of the team that convertered episodes of this and other Crawfords productions ready for dvd release. Some episodes have issues, but from what I remember all episodes were there.

  5. @ Jason – it’s ridiculous isn’t it! No matter the time of day you can bet a Crawford DVD ad will be on every ad break. Worst part though is I live in the M.I.A. (a WIN monopoly area) so the ads are on every single channel.

  6. @Lyn – Oh Lyn. You obviously don’t live in WIN-terrotory. WIN (who now owns Crawford Prod.) has been flogging Homicide, Division 4, Sullivans, etc. DVD box set for a few years now – in every program, every day and every night.

  7. Several of the early B/W episodes have not survived. I recall when Seven did a 30th anniversary special in the 90s, mention was made that several eps had detoriated too much to be unwatchable now. All the colour eps have survived I believe.

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