Here's how Amanda Blake won the role of Kitty Russell in Gunsmoke

"I made it the hard way."

Here’s a great job interview tip that’s sure to win you the role, courtesy of your favorite lady, Kitty Russell: Just sit down in a prospective boss’s office and refuse to leave! It’s sure to work!

Well, it certainly worked for Amanda Blake.

In an interview with The Montreal Star, Blake described her rise to stardom. Imperative to that ascent, she confirmed, was her own strength and perseverance. She said, “As Kitty Russell of Gunsmoke, I’ve achieved status not only in the eyes of the industry but in my own eyes. I’ve become a successful actress, and I made it the hard way. No one gave me anything in this business except my start at Metro. I’ve struggled all the way.”

The actress then revealed how she was able to land her famed role. She explained, “I insisted upon it. Six years ago, I went and sat in Bill Warren’s office — he was producing — and I just sat there. I don’t know how long until he would see me. I just out-waited for him.” For Blake, her patience was eventually (and luckily) rewarded. She said, “Finally, he let me come into his office. We talked for 45 minutes. We discussed my background and acting concepts. I’d done a good bit of live TV, and eventually, he said, ‘Would you be interested in testing for the part?’”

Of course, after testing, Blake won the role. She said, “I tested, and they gave me the job, and we made a pilot film and the film was sold. And here I am six years; after; and next fall the film goes to an hour in length, so I guess people still like it. More importantly, I guess they still like me.” 

Obviously, we can’t condone waiting out your potential employer, and not everyone can be as beautiful and charming as Amanda Blake while they’re doing it, but this interview really speaks to Blake’s determination as an actress. More importantly, it speaks to her power that made her an absolutely perfect Kitty Russell.

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7 Comments

JimnyJ 4 months ago
I was 4-5 y.o. when Gunsmoke came on our wood enclosed black & white Philco. 1 or 2 of my dad's bro's would come over and watch also. Guns were common toys for kids in my day and I'd be ready for Matt during the opening every week, he always outgrew me & I'd hit the floor in my jams with cowboy boots & holstered 6 shooter. It must have been quite a site to watch weekly, but I watch them all yet, without my gun & holster now. In going to Dodge City about 15 years ago, the museum has a room with a tv like we had playing with neat memorabilia in it including Sam the bartenders best. Great show. Dodge City was well worth the stop with the street as it would have been in the late 1800's, still had shootouts through the day.
Lisa24 4 months ago
When Amanda Blake divorced, she would go to the Gunsmoke set at night and just wander around because it felt so much like home to her.
Barnbaby 7 months ago
Another actor that I came to realize is very talented is Dennis Weaver. If you have never seen the movie "Duel", you owe it to yourself to check it out. It is quite good, and he is pretty much the only "human" in the movie. It will make you think that you "just never know".
raddad Barnbaby 7 months ago
And don’t forget that it was directed by some unknown kid named Speilberg
11brendle 8 months ago
Amanda Blake was a very good actress. I always enjoy her on Gunsmoke.
Suzies1952 8 months ago
I just loved kitty Russell on gun smoke she was beautiful, strong and would take no bull from any man and loved, as a woman back then owned a saloon
Runeshaper 8 months ago
Amanda Blake was a determined lady and it paid off!
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