Status of The Mike Wallace Interview

A total of 72 episodes of The Mike Wallace Interview were broadcast by ABC between 1957 and 1958. The series premiered on April 28th, 1957 and was sponsored by Phillip Morris through the April 18th, 1958 episode. The Fund for the Republic then sponsored a 13-week set of interviews entitled “Liberty and Freedom” (one of which was never broadcast) followed by an additional six episodes. The final broadcast took place on September 14th, 1958.

My article about The Mike Wallace Interview can be found here.

The Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin has 66 of the 72 episodes of The Mike Wallace Interview. Five are only available as audio recordings while the rest are kinescopes that have been digitized and made available for viewing online. The Ransom Center also has a transcript of the Ben Hecht interview (broadcast February 25th, 1958) but no audio or video. One of the episodes the Ransom Center does not have a copy of is the controversial Mickey Cohen broadcast from May 19th, 1957.

According to Steve Winston, Associate Curator of Film at the Ransom Center, “There are reports that the BBC still has some excerpts though we have not been able to locate the specific department that might hold them. Other than that, the interview appears to be lost.” Audio of the Cohen episode is part of Archival Television Audio, Inc. collection.

Also missing from the Ransom Center’s collection are the two retractions read by ABC’s Oliver Treyz on May 27th and December 14th. According to Winston, “We have no idea why the footage was not included in the kinescope. We don’t know if they were removed later, or if they were never recorded in the first place.” Archival Television Audio, Inc. has the May 27th retraction read by Treyz.

The UCLA Film & Television Archive has two episodes of the series: the Cyrus Eaton interview that is audio only at the Ransom Center and the Ben Hecht interview that the Ransom Center only has a transcript for. Both the Museum of Broadcasting and The Paley Center for Media have several episodes that are also part of the Ransom Center’s collection.

(According to a December 1957 article in The Los Angeles Times, a filmed “stand-by interview” with Evelyn Rudie was always ready to be used in the event a guest didn’t show up. It is not included in the episode count and its current whereabouts are unknown.)

Abbreviations:
ATA – Archival Television Audio, Inc.
MOB – The Museum of Broadcasting
Paley – The Paley Center for Media
Ransom – The Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas
UCLA – The UCLA Film & Television Archive

# Episode Title Airdate Status
1 Gloria Swanson 04/28/1957 Ransom
2 Eldon L. Edwards 05/05/1957 Ransom
3 Philip Wylie 05/12/1957 Ransom
4 Mickey Cohen* 05/19/1957 ATA
5 Senator Wayne Morse 05/26/1957 Ransom
6 Earl Browder 06/02/1957 Ransom
7 Ralph Lapp 06/09/1957 Ransom
8 Mary Margaret McBride 06/16/1957 Ransom
9 David Hawkins 06/23/1957 Ransom
10 Charles “Commando” Kelly 06/30/1957 Ransom
11 Steve Allen 07/07/1957 Ransom/Paley/MOB
12 Diana Barrymore 07/14/1957 Ransom
13 Glenn H. McCarthy 07/21/1957 Ransom
14 Senator James O. Eastland 07/28/1957 Ransom/Paley
15 Bob Feller 08/04/1957 Ransom
16 Dagmar 08/11/1957 Ransom/MOB
17 Harry Bridges 08/18/1957
18 Fred Otash 08/25/1957 Ransom
19 Frank Lloyd Wright 09/01/1957 Ransom/Paley
20 Eddie Arcaro 09/08/1957 Ransom
21 George Jessel 09/14/1957 Ransom
22 Governor Orval E. Faubus 09/15/1957 Ransom/MOB
23 Margaret Sanger 09/21/1957 Ransom
24 Frank Lloyd Wright 09/28/1957 Ransom/Paley
25 Lilli St. Cyr 10/05/1957 Ransom
26 Retired General George C. Kenny 10/12/1957 Ransom
27 Malcolm Muggeridge 10/19/1957 Ransom
28 Carmen Basilio 10/26/1957 Ransom
29 Kirk Douglas 11/02/1957 Ransom
30 Diana Dors 11/09/1957 Ransom
31 Elsa Maxwell 11/16/1957 Ransom
32 Eleanor Roosevelt 11/23/1957 Ransom
33 Bennett Cerf 11/30/1957 Ransom
34 Drew Pearson 12/07/1957 Ransom/MOB
35 Edward Bennett Williams 12/14/1957 Ransom
36 Leonard Ross 12/21/1957 Ransom
37 Major Alexander P. de Seversky 12/28/1957 Ransom
38 Jean Seberg 01/04/1958 Ransom
39 Nobel Prize Winners: Lester B. Pearson, Others 01/11/1958 Ransom
40 John Gates 01/18/1958 Ransom
41 Walter Reuther 01/25/1958 Ransom
42 Fulton Lewis, Jr 02/01/1958 Ransom
43 Pearl S. Buck 02/08/1958 Ransom
44 Ben Hecht** 02/15/1958 UCLA
45 Rudy Vallee 02/22/1958 Ransom
46 Tennessee Williams 03/01/1958
47 Major Donald Keyhoe 03/08/1958 Ransom
48 Oscar Hammerstein II 03/15/1958 Ransom
49 Anthony Perkins 03/22/1958 Ransom
50 Peter Ustinov 03/29/1958 Ransom
51 Lillian Roth 04/05/1958 Ransom
52 Ambassador Abba Eban 04/12/1959 Ransom
53 Salvador Dali 04/19/1959 Ransom
54 Rev. Reinhold Niebuhr 04/27/1958 Ransom
55 Cyrus Eaton*** 05/04/1958 Ransom/UCLA
56 Justice William O. Douglas 05/11/1958 Ransom
57 Aldous Huxley 05/18/1958 Ransom
58 Erich Fromm 05/25/1958 Ransom
59 Adlai E. Stevenson*** 06/01/1958 Ransom
60 Sylvester (Pat) Weaver*** 06/08/1958 Ransom
61 Henry Cabot Lodge UNAIRED
62 Monsignor Francis Lally*** 06/22/1958 Ransom
63 Harry Ashmore 06/29/1958 Ransom
64 Charles Percy 07/06/1958 Ransom
65 Henry Kissinger 07/13/1958 Ransom
66 Dr. Robert Hutchins*** 07/20/1958 Ransom
67 Maj. Alexander P. de Seversky 08/03/1958
68 Dr. Henry M. Wriston 08/17/1958 Ransom
69 Edward A. Weeks, Jr 08/24/1958 Ransom
70 James McBride Dabbs 08/31/1958 Ransom
71 Mortimer Adler 09/07/1958 Ransom
72 Arthur Larson 09/14/1958 Ransom

*Archival Television Audio, Inc. has an audio recording of this episode.
**The Harry Ransom Center has a transcript for this episode.
**The Harry Ransom Center has audio recordings of these episodes.

NOTE: From March 1959 to September 1961, Mike Wallace hosted an unrelated interview series called The Mike Wallace Interview (also known as Mike Wallace Interviews) on independent station WNTA-TV in New York City.

References:
Smith, Cecil. “Stars Dodge the Mike Wallace Interview to Avoid Being Tagged ‘It’ in Public.” Los Angeles Times. 1 Dec. 1957: G3

Revised April 19th, 2016


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