Created by Eric Bercovici
Some PI's are thickheaded, and some are pretty down on their luck, but HAROLD SHILLMAN takes the cake. In his one appearance in print, So Little Cause For Caroline (1980), he tries to take his life with a gun, but the bullet bounces off his head! He's then lured out of semi-retirement to find the wandering wife of a Las Vegas casino owner (and crimeboss), and stumbles into the usual deceit and intrigue.
Author Eric Bercovici had done most of his writing for television, so it was no surprise that this book was turned into a made-for-TV movie a few years later. The results were so-so, even if it did mark Robert Mitchum's television debut. His sleepy-eyed performance as a burned-out, dead-tired private eye who just didn't give a damn anymore was dead-on, but was it acting?
He ploughs through the film like he's looking for something, anything to give a damn about. As he snaps at Angie Dickinson when she tries to provoke him into a reaction, "Lady, I don't feel anything."
Bercovici has written for Hawaii Five-O, I-Spy, McClain's Law, Mission: Impossible, Police Story and other shows across his career, and penned a handful of stand alone novels. He even wrote and produced James Clavell's Shogun for TV.
-- Arthur Lyons
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