Virgil Vogel

Active - 1950 - 1992  |   Born - Nov 29, 1919   |   Died - Jan 7, 1996   |   Genres - Drama, Western

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Biography by Bruce Eder

Virgil Vogel enjoyed a half-century-long career in the movie industry, starting out in the editing department at Universal as an assistant in his early twenties and eventually becoming a successful director. Vogel's early credits as an editor include Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man, the Frank Sinatra vehicle Meet Danny Wilson, and the Tony Curtis costumer Son of Ali Baba. By the second half of the decade, he was working on such top studio releases as This Island Earth and Orson Welles' Touch of Evil (the editing of which became a major source of contention between Welles and the studio). In 1956, tired of editing, he earned his directorial debut on the sci-fi horror film The Mole People (1956), a silly but extremely popular and profitable release, and he also closed out the Ma and Pa Kettle series with The Kettles on Old MacDonald's Farm (1957), having edited the preceding movie in the series. Over the next few years, he handled the direction on such modest (if popular) programmers as The Land Unknown and Invasion of the Animal People (a Swedish-made science fiction film that had many hauntingly eerie and beautiful sequences), while also working increasingly in television, principally for Universal's Revue TV division, on series such as Mike Hammer, Overland Trail, and Wagon Train, and later on series such as Bonanza, Burke's Law, Honey West, Dan August, and The Streets of San Francisco. His 1970s credits included many detective and action series, among them Cannon, Police Story, and Joe Forrester, as well as the occasional science fiction-oriented show such as The Six Million Dollar Man and The Man From Atlantis. Vogel's career in the 1980s brought him to such series as Knight Rider, Magnum P.I., and Miami Vice, while in the 1990s he worked on Walker, Texas Ranger, among other series. Vogel retired in the mid-'90s and passed away in 1996.

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