"He-ey, Cis-co!... He-ey, Pan-cho!"
Before Cisco and Pancho called Pioneertown their home, they ruled the airways!
The Cisco Kid is a film, radio, television and comic book series based on a fictional Western character created by author O. Henry.
However, O. Henry's 19o7 short story "The Caballero's Way" from his book titled Heart of the West depicted a Kid unlike any other that Hollywood would become familiar with. Subsequent stories of the Kid depicted the him as a heroic Mexican caballero, although O. Henry's original story depicted him as a non-Hispanic, murdering outlaw.
The Cisco Kid movie series began in 1939 with Cesar Romero as the Kid in The Cisco Kid and the Lady .
The Cisco Kid came to radio October 2, 1942, with Jackson Beck in the title role and Louis Sorin as Pancho. This series continued on Mutual until 1945. It was followed by another Mutual series in 1946, starring Jack Mather and Harry Lang, who continued to head the cast in the syndicated radio series of more than 6oo episodes from 1947 to 1956.
Duncan Renaldo took over the role as the Kid in 1945 with The Cisco Kid Returns. Shortly after that, the Kid found Pioneertown and settled down for a long while!
Philip N. Krasne is responsible for the Cisco Kid that many of us know today. After getting The Cisco Kid on the radio, Krasne then aimed to put him back on the big screen. He addressed the poor reviews of the Kid's appearance by hiring a consultant from the Mexican embassy to oversee a revamping of the Kid's wardrobe and overall appearance.
The Valiant Hombre, the first film to be produced in Pioneertown, was released December 15th, 1948. Duncan Renaldo returned to star as the newly revamped Kid and was accompanied by Leo Carrillo as Pancho. The famous duo would later reprise their roles in four more films and over 15o television episodes, all of which were filmed in Pioneertown.
The weekly The Cisco Kid television series through Ziv Television Programs first aired on September 5th, 195o. Duncan Renaldo and Leo Carrillo starred in all six seasons which included 156 episodes, all of which were shot at Pioneertown in just over four years.
While the vast majority of America watched television in black and white, Philip N. Krasne knew that the day of color television was just around the corner. So he chose to film the entire series in color, which was then automatically reprinted in black and white for public broadcasting. Although about 99% of viewers weren't able to see it in color until the 196o's, Krasne's choice lead The Cisco Kid to become the first television series to ever be filmed entirely in color.