Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Debuting December 1, 1953, the Canadian dramatic anthology General Motors Theatre was actually a fully sponsored version of the "sustaining" series CBC Theatre. Both series were supervised by Sydney Newman, an influential and often controversial figure in the annals of Canadian television. Among the prominent playwrights represented herein were Leo Orenstein, Lister Sinclair, and Nathan Cohen. The best-known of the series' writers was Arthur Hailey, whose crisis-in-the-sky drama Flight Into Danger was later restaged for American television, then filmed as Zero Hour in 1957 -- and ultimately parodied as Airplane! in 1980. Beginning in early 1956, General Motors Theatre was seen on a biweekly basis, alternating with The Chevy Show. A disagreement between sponsor and network brought the series to an abrupt halt on September 25, 1956, but the property was revived two years later as General Motors Presents.