Reza Badiyi, designer of Hawaii Five-O titles, dies

Reza Badiyi, a television director who also designed the titles of the original Hawaii Five-O series, died over the weekend at the age of 81, according to the Deadline Hollywood entertainment news Web site.

Badiyi directed a lot of episodic television and televison movies. Before that, he was a title designer whose work graced shows such as He & She, the fifth season of Get Smart and The Mary Tyler Moore Show. But his best-known title work was on the original Five-O (1968-1980), creating images to match the theme music by Morton Stevens. Here’s the first version, running at around 1:30 for the television movie that was the Five-O pilot:

When the series went into production, Badiyi shortened and tweaked the images. The biggest change was a helicopter shot of star Jack Lord standing on a balcony of the Ilikai hotel. The titles would vary a bit over the tweleve seasons but remained fairly consistent. Here’s the season one version:

A proposal for revamping U.N.C.L.E. creator credits

All of a sudden, if you want U.N.C.L.E., you got U.N.C.L.E.: the complete Man From U.N.C.L.E. series (first released in 2007), The Girl From U.N.C.L.E. (out today, Aug. 23) and the eight Man From U.N.C.L.E. movies (ditto). But there’s one nagging aspect about all of them: none of the creator credits is entirely accurate.

The Man From U.N.C.L.E. series and movies have the credit, “The Man From U.N.C.L.E. Developed by Sam Rolfe.” The Girl From U.N.C.L.E. has “U.N.C.L.E. Format Developed by Sam Rolfe.” Both are accurate as far as they go. But do they go far enough?

Rolfe created a good 90 percent or more of the finished product. Still, he wasn’t brought in until an idea had been hatched, and developed for a bit, by producer Norman Felton, who tried to get Ian Fleming involved., The 007 author had contributed some ideas, the most enduring to name the lead spy Napoleon Solo and the other that a Miss Moneypenny type be named April Dancer.

Trying to entice Fleming was a bit of salesmanship by Felton; NBC was willing to commit to a series without a pilot made if it could market a show as being created by Ian Fleming. (For further details, VIEW CRAIG HENDERSON’S FOR YOUR EYES ONLY WEB SITE BY CLICKING HERE. Meanwhile, Rolfe didn’t really have much to do with The Girl From U.N.C.L.E. itself. The spinoff show would be part of the U.N.C.L.E. universe that Rolfe had mostly created. But writer Dean Hargrove did the heavy lifting in coming up with a woman U.N.C.L.E. agent.

With that in mind, these revamped credits might be more accurate. They might not pass muster with the Writer’s Guild of America (which has specific rules for creator credits on TV shows). In any case, judge for yourself:

(Big type)
The Man From U.N.C.L.E. Developed by

(smaller type)
Based on a Character Created by


(same size type for both)
The Girl From U.N.C.L.E. Developed by

Based on The Man From U.N.C.L.E. Developed by

Of course, it’s too late to change at this late date and Fleming signed away any rights he had for one British pound to keep 007 producers Albert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltzman off his back. Still, credits approximating these might be more representative of what actually happened.