"After Berlin fell (in 1945), my father, Colonel Thomas Hammond had to go to Germany with General Eisenhower, but he had met my mother by that time and he didn’t want to lose touch with her," Nicholas Hammond recounted. "Communications were very poor because of the war, but he would go to his office in Berlin at about 4 o’clock in the morning and she’d go to the embassy in London – and he would call her on the hotline, which was one of the few phone lines operating in all of Europe!"

When World War II ended in September 1945, Nicholas Hammond's parents "lived in Paris for about 6 years (to 1950). My father was the foreign liaison for the U.S. there. Then, when the Korean War broke out (in June 1950), he was transferred to Washington to head the intelligence operations at the Pentagon for the war. I arrived soon (born in May 1950) after they moved to Washington. We lived there until I was 6, then we moved to Europe. We spent about 6 months a year in London and 6 months in Paris. My father was an aide to General Dwight D. Eisenhower, so I spent the first 10 years of my life (1950-1960) in Europe with English children. 

"We moved back to Washington when I was 10. I got my first acting job 6 months later (in the movie 'Lord of the Flies'). Then, the following fall, there was a Broadway play called, 'The Complaisant Love'. I got that when I was 11. After that I hired an agent and I’ve been acting ever since  I loved the grown-ups in the business. They were much more interesting than the grown-ups I met. I don’t know, though. Whether that was because they made me feel like an adult – or because they acted like children!

"When I was sitting in 7th-grade algebra, I was having a lot less fun than when I was working on the stage in New York! I was making money. When I wasn’t working I’d go to my regular school in Washington. When I was in New York I’d go to a professional school. Then I worked at 20th Century Fox for a while, I was in their school – and still other times I had a tutor with me. My parents and I agreed that I should go to college and then go back to it (acting), which is what I did.

"I chose Princeton University because it was only an hour from New York. By the end of my second year I couldn’t wait and so I did a picture for Paramount. During my senior year I did another Broadway play. I was a little frightened when I started because my education had been so sketchy. But I graduated with a major in English literature. For me, the business was wonderful but it’s not something I would recommend for everyone – unless you feel it is the only thing you want to do.

"If you want to act, do it on the local level – in your junior high drama department or in a community theater or in whatever is available. Just immerse yourself in it and see if it’s what you want. The worst thing is for a young person with no experience and no contacts to get on a bus and head for New York or Los Angeles. Many cities around the country have fabulous theater groups today. You don’t have to go to New York or Los Angeles. My advice to anybody is to get your feet wet where you are.

"Make sure it’s what you want to do. I did see other children who hated their lives, but they probably hadn’t wanted to act in the first place. Some had been cursed with beautiful looks and ended up in the movies, but would rather have been out playing baseball or playing with their dolls. Those are the ones who later feel hatred and bitterness toward the business. For me, it was the most wonderful childhood I could ever imagine.

"Let things happen in a natural progression, one step at a time. Then go to a bigger city. The best way to come to Hollywood is to be asked to come. I was in a play and was asked to come out and do a film, which I did. But even then I had a year of serving hamburgers. My agent would call me on the pay phone at Hamburger Hamlet – he didn’t know I worked there! There I was, in my red uniform with everybody calling for their orders, talking to my agent about my acting career! I can relate to many aspects of Peter Parker's character. I got the part after somebody from CBS saw me doing a play at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles."

Emil Farkas choreographed the action scenes in the 1978 TV series, 'Spider-Man'. Emil explained, "Being under the critical eye of the family hour censor, certain restrictions had to be dealt with. That comes into play with shows that air at certain hours of the evening (in 'Spider-Man' case 8:00pm on Wednesdays). I believe that it works this way. In a 30-minute time spot a script can have 2 pieces of action.

"For example, kicking someone (one kick) is considered one piece of action. Punching someone is considered an action. We were lucky in a sense because it was claimed that in our show one whole fight scene was one piece of action. Apparently CBS agreed. They probably went along with the idea because Spider-Man is really a fantasy of someone’s imagination. The action was therefore never between 2 real-to-life human beings because Spider-Man is a made up person.

"The kids, who the family hour was instituted to protect from television violence, would accept the fact that a fight between Spider-Man and anyone else could never really happen. The use of the helmet camera put the viewer in a first person perspective with the action. It actually makes the audience feel the action. The camera is specially mounted on top of a helmet that the stunt man wears. When he bobs and weaves the camera goes with him in a natural movement.

"Primarily, each fight had to be different from one another, otherwise the audience would catch on to the repetition and become bored. Therefore, we had to take into consideration some of the props that were available. I first study the script and then rough out the action on paper. It must be taken into consideration the time each action should take and the type of moves that should be used to make it work on film.

"The stunt co-ordinator, Freddy Waugh who also plays Spider-Man in costume, and I went over each move step by step. By the time we started filming we knew what we had to do. It was then left up to Ron Satlof, the director, to give the okay or to make modifications. When a director wants changes or gives any kind of technical instructions you have to be able to speak his language.

"You have to understand what he is talking about when he refers to certain lighting techniques and camera angles. Modification generally means we have to make changes in a hurry. A cast and crew won’t sit around for 3 hours while you dream up a new fight scene. You have to have alternative plans and hang loose enough to change the original fight plan you had been working hours on in preparation.

"This particular show had double the work than what actually appeared on the tube because there were 2 different versions of the same show that was produced. The family hour was a so-called soft core version for American television. There was also a 2-hour feature film which might be called the hard core version. This one will be distributed throughout Europe and the Orient (Asia). The only real difference between the 2 is in the theater version there was more body contact and the fight scenes were longer. In one sense it made the work more of a challenge because I had to come up with 2 different versions for the same fight."

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