gun smoke Actress Amanda Blake was an integral part of the western television show. Longtime fans and cast members recognize them as an instrumental part of the series. However, Blake almost lost her job when she was asked to describe her character, Kitty, in an interview with a journalist. She called the saloon owner a “tramp,” and CBS execs didn’t like that very much.
According to a 1960 TV Guide interview with Blake, she had a say in her participation gun smoke off screen. She explained how she interacted with the show’s loyal fans once a month at county fairs and rodeos with Dennis Weaver and Milburn Stone as her characters. However, this demanded a lot from the actors, who already spent an enormous amount of their time on the set in these roles.
Stone said: “It wouldn’t be the same without Amanda gun smoke, and that’s a fact.” They became a close-knit, supportive family. The TV didn’t have the typical entertainment ego conflict as they worked together as a common entity.
Blake told TV Guide that she was really looking forward to the job gun smoke when she first joined. However, she was also incredibly blunt when it came to talking about Kitty. It’s not because she disrespected the character, but because she thought it was common knowledge. As a result, the CBS studio executives threatened her job.
“When I was starting out, a reporter asked me what Kitty was anyway?” Blake recalled. “I said, ‘Why, she’s a tramp.’ I thought this was common knowledge. But CBS yelled. I almost lost my job.”
However, that’s not all Blake had to say about Kitty. She also recognized the place of men in the character’s life.
“There was a man – isn’t that always the case?” Blake said. “He loved her and he left her and then they put a label on her. Kitty’s not the laundry guy. I kind of get the idea – don’t ask me how I got it – that Kitty is from New Orleans. Let’s just say that I think seaport cities are more feminine, that they bring out the feminine jungle right away. So she strayed, and she would have strayed from Dodge if it weren’t for Matt Dillon.”
Blake became very closely associated with her role as Kitty in gun smoke because she played the character for 19 years. She began in 1955 and continued playing the character until 1974. As a result, she didn’t have much free time to work on many other television projects or feature films. Nonetheless, Blake was more than happy to keep working gun smokeespecially with this cast with whom she has developed such a close and personal relationship.
Western fans continue to recognize Blake as one of the Western genre’s most notable stars. She was inducted into the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum’s Hall of Great Western Performers.
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