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Washington: Behind Closed Doors 

The story of a power-hungry U.S. President, and the men, with whom he surrounds himself, in order to keep his hold on power. Based on John Ehrlichman's book about the Nixon administration.

Creator:

David W. Rintels
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1  
1977  
Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Series cast summary:
Cliff Robertson ...  William Martin 6 episodes, 1977
Jason Robards ...  President Richard Monckton 6 episodes, 1977
Stefanie Powers ...  Sally Whalen 6 episodes, 1977
Robert Vaughn ...  Frank Flaherty 6 episodes, 1977
Lois Nettleton ...  Linda Martin 6 episodes, 1977
Barry Nelson ...  Bob Bailey 6 episodes, 1977
Harold Gould ...  Carl Tessler 6 episodes, 1977
Tony Bill ...  Adam Gardiner 6 episodes, 1977
Andy Griffith ...  Esker Scott Anderson 6 episodes, 1977
John Houseman ...  Myron Dunn 6 episodes, 1977
David Selby ...  Roger Castle 6 episodes, 1977
Meg Foster ...  Jennie Jamison 6 episodes, 1977
Peter Coffield Peter Coffield ...  Eli McGinn 6 episodes, 1977
Frances Lee McCain ...  Paula Stoner Gardiner 6 episodes, 1977
Barry Primus ...  Joe Wisnovsky 6 episodes, 1977
Diana Ewing ...  Kathy Ferris 6 episodes, 1977
Lara Parker ...  Wanda Elliott 6 episodes, 1977
John Lehne John Lehne ...  Tucker Tallford 6 episodes, 1977
Alan Oppenheimer ...  Simon Cappell 6 episodes, 1977
Nicholas Pryor ...  Hank Ferris 6 episodes, 1977
Frank Marth ...  Lawrence Allison 5 episodes, 1977
Thayer David ...  Elmer Morse 4 episodes, 1977
George Gaynes ...  Brewster Perry 4 episodes, 1977
Phillip R. Allen ...  Walter Tulloch 4 episodes, 1977
Joseph Hacker ...  Jimmy Bird 4 episodes, 1977
June Dayton ...  Mrs. Monckton 4 episodes, 1977
Jean Howell Jean Howell ...  Dorothy Kemp 4 episodes, 1977
Linden Chiles ...  Jack Atherton 3 episodes, 1977
Skip Homeier ...  Lars Haglund 3 episodes, 1977
Borah Silver Borah Silver ...  Burt Saraceni 3 episodes, 1977
John Randolph ...  Bennett Lowman 2 episodes, 1977
Joseph Sirola ...  Ozymandias 2 episodes, 1977
Madison Arnold ...  Harvey Bass 2 episodes, 1977
James Ray James Ray ...  Al Donnally / ... 2 episodes, 1977
Richard Gates Richard Gates ...  Bernie Tibbetts / ... 2 episodes, 1977
Bonnie Bartlett ...  Joan Bailey / ... 2 episodes, 1977
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Storyline

The story of a power-hungry U.S. President, and the men, with whom he surrounds himself, in order to keep his hold on power. Based on John Ehrlichman's book about the Nixon administration.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 September 1977 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Washington - Hinter verschlossenen Türen See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Robert Vaughn won an Emmy for playing Frank Flaherty. In his acceptance speech, he thanked Director Gary Nelson for directing twelve and a half hours of television "by himself". See more »

Connections

Featured in The 30th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards (1978) See more »

Soundtracks

White House Lawn Party
Composed by Dominic Frontiere
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Pure Pleasure
12 January 2008 | by Stamp-3See all my reviews

I just had to put a post up about this show, which I have recently watched for about the sixth time. With all the wonderful TV that is made these days, I don't think that there has ever been a show that is more purely enjoyable (and I have been watching TV for over 50 years!).

I had actually read Erlichman's novel ("The Company") and found it a good tight little thriller, obviously using the JFK/LBJ/Nixon Presidencies as his template to tell a fictional tale.

I then saw this TV miniseries in 1977 when I was working in New York, and again back in England a year later when it was shown over here. BBC then showed it again in 1994 when I had the good sense to videotape it (good old VHS), a tape I have kept and pull out every five years or so to watch again. And I love it every time.

The brilliant stroke the writers of the show pulled was to take the book and expand it, to make a full-on comedy drama of the Nixon White House.

And the casting and the story lines are astonishingly entertaining.

Cliff Robertson (the notional hero) is OK, but he has the boring part and has to introduce "The Macguffin", which in this story is the fate of "The Primula Report".

The real fun is the political shenanigans of Senator/President Monckton (Nixon) and his appalling crew.

There are so many good performances (especially Jason Robards as Monckton, but also Andy Griffiths, John Houseman, Harold Gould etc)), but the two "tours des force" are Robert Vaughn as Flaherty and, above all, Nicholas Pryor as Hank Ferris. And the scenes between the two of them are priceless; ("Loyalty Hank, loyalty").

Pryor is amazing. Playing this frightened, ambitious, corrupt little man; the hoops he puts himself through are both hilarious and unutterably painful. The sequence where he inadvertently reveals the levels of corruption going on at The Whitehouse and is dragged over to Flaherty's office thinking he is going to be exposed is, quite simply a comic masterpiece.

And I think this is the point where I diverge from the other, very laudatory, posts on this page.

Those that remember it and have seen it, love it, but their comments are all too serious. In large part this show is a comedy. Not a comedy of jokes and "bits", but a comedy of manner, of wit. The sheer appalling behaviour of the main characters is breathtaking, but you can't help rooting for them. They are all going to get their comeuppance, but it's so much fun watching them do it.

This is a pizza and coke show, par excellence. In fact it's a soap opera, but none the worse for that. The filming technique is very dated; there are so many zoom shots and "dah dah dah" moments, it sometimes feels like an episode of Dallas, but that all adds to the fun.

In short I defy anyone who starts watching it not to be totally hooked.

I only wish they had made a sequel where we could have seen them all crash and burn (with perhaps, against all the odds, Hank actually surviving!!).


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