Trail Tales Cast Interview with Gabriel Folse
Rancher in "BLACK ULYSSES"
It was a beautiful humid day
Austin, Texas and Gabriel Folse was a darlin' to take time out of his
day to give me a call!
Gabriel's Answers in white
How were you cast?
My Houston agent knew Holly Hire, the casting agent in Tucson. Holly
sending scripts to my agent and she would see if there was something
the time to fly out there and give it a shot. They wanted the role to
large enough that it would justify me trying. I flew to Tucson
read for her. I think it was a Friday and she brought me back Friday
I had a pre-read with her in the afternoon at 2 o'clock or something,
I had to come back at 6. That's where you would meet the producer
director. They were casting for one show while they were shooting a
The show that I read for was the fifth episode. When we were shooting
episode,the pilot was airing. They had shot the pilot in California in
or April of that year, the first season that is. Putting it together
hiatus, finishing the edit, and then finalizing the scripts for the
season and starting to shoot.
They, the company, started shooting again in August. I came in in
to do the episode that I was on. They had a party at a restaurant where
the stars and directors that were there, could watch the Pilot on a big
So that night of reading on a Friday, I met Harvey Frand and Bruce
Bruce was the director for that week and he was very well known for
westerns. Had done a lot of episodes of Gunsmoke. You can usually tell
in the industry....they kind of break out into two groups: people that
integrity, they're nice, they honor your boundaries and then people
are power mad, and there are no such things as boundaries, they are
Here's Harvey Frand and Bruce Kessler and instantly you know- "Man I'd
to work for these guys." They were just such kind people. My
teacher was Ed Dmytryk, a rather famous film director, and he had moved
Austin. He was such a gentleman that I thought 'If that's what the film
is like, I want some of that.' Meaning as a career, as opposed to
estate, which was what I was doing at the time that I met Mr. Dmytryk.
So, they cast me and I think I stayed over Saturday for wardrobe, then
went back to Austin. I had to wait a week. I went back out the
Friday and that day was, I think just a wardrobe fitting, we reported
the set, but I don't think we worked. We had Saturday and Sunday off.
then I shot, I believe it was Monday through Thursday of next
Tim Thomerson was a guest star and Stan Shaw was another guest star.
were both very nice. Tim was funny. Bruce Kessler was a great guy to
When I had gone back to Austin to wait for the filming, they have this
where they fly a flag over the capitol building and then its certified
having been flown over the capitol of the State of Texas. So, I
those for Harvey and I took it back to him.
And he didn't stay long... I guess they fired him after the first year.
hear he was just too nice. It's kind of sad.
And Holly Hire was really, really nice. I just had a great time, I have
negative memories. As an unknown actor, I'm looking at a bunch of
who have a shot at a series here. All of the 'young riders' were
and it was a chance for one or more of them to break out. See if the
took to the show or one of the characters.. I remember the lead female
a very very strong actress. You could tell, just disciplined and
trained, just REALLY good.
Costumes: It seems like most of the costumes come from one or two
American Clothing and one other have the wardrobe for westerns, and
try to rent enough assortment to fit people. So they don't have to make
I'm assuming that they did for the stars, but it's difficult, and time
if you're doing stunt work you have to have doubles, for wardrobe that
especially if you're going to be squibbed. So they will usually
those or buy those at a western clothing store, so they are modern made
they look old and they can buy multiples.
Which members of the main cast did you work
with the most?
Brett Cullen... I saw more of him. I remember at lunch, talking
to the actor that played the character of the Indian, he was very nice.
enjoyed talking to him. I didn't really get to talk to anyone else.
Tim Thomerson, we hung out in the shade one day. He was just telling
he was hilarious. I talked to Bruce one day, he was an avid sailor,
Kessler, the director. We talked about boats.
What other actors do you remember from the set?
Don Collier. I remember him from the set... what a LIKEABLE, KIND man.
Peppi Sanders. [She played his wife on the episode] Oh, she was
nice. I liked working with her a lot. She was very dedicated. A serious
and just pleasant to be around, I got lucky. I wonder where she is and
she is, and if she is still acting.
Did you have a lot of special makeup for
the role [after your character was whipped]?
Well I would say it was more wardrobe than makeup. I, my character, had
bullwhipped. I think they just lifted up the shirt and showed a bloody
They had a stunt coordinator that was an expert with the bull whip
Tim Thomerson how to use the whip and then they positioned the camera
it would look like it was hitting me, but it wasn't. It was a real whip.
I remember this guy named Lundin. He had the stage coach, he was the
wrangler. He was EXTREMELY professional and the stunt co-ordinator was
pretty intense guy. Everybody was really safety conscious. Tim
to fall off his horse and they had dug some earth out of the ground and
a mattress in and they covered it with dirt. So, you have to be pretty
pretty near the mark.. and hit that mark, or you could get hurt.
The first season.. if I remember the show's rating were somewhere in
50s.. and there's always gossip. Some of it sounded pretty authentic.
seems that the head of ABC at the time, loved the show.. the
the writing. Someone at Ogiens/Kane was saying that even though the
might not get a high rating, the head of ABC was going to personally
that the show would survive long enough to have a second season at
It seemed real enough, felt like the truth.. it feels right. I think
ratings for the second season were in the 30s.
You know, we had that party at the restaurant. There was euphoria after
aired. Everyone was really happy with how it came out. I remember being
with Anthony Zerbe's working attitude. He's, I guess, the most
recognizable name and had done so many things. I didn't get to talk to
at all, but I liked what I saw, his demeanor. Just a great guy!
A Big Ol' thanks from me to Mr. Folse!! He
was a joy to talk to and I think I'd trade the humidity here for the
weather down there anyday... Mr. Folse is on the lookout for his photos
set... so keep an eye out for updates on this page! Thanks again,
sharing your time and memories with the fans! - Raye