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Miami Vice --    was a television crime drama series that was produced by Michael Mann for NBC. The series starred Don Johnson as James "Sonny" Crockett and Philip Michael Thomas as Ricardo "Rico" Tubbs, two Metro-Dade Police Department detectives working undercover in Miami. The series ran for five seasons on NBC from 1984–1989. The USA Network later began airing reruns the next year, in 1990, and actually broadcast an originally unaired episode during its syndication run of the series on January 25, 1990.

Unlike standard police procedurals, the show drew heavily upon 1980s New Wave culture and music. The show became noted for its heavy integration of music and visual effects to tell a story. It is recognized as one of the most influential television series of all time. People magazine stated that Miami Vice "was the first show to look really new and different since color TV was invented". Episodes of the show have become popular in syndication since its cancellation both in the U.S. and in several foreign markets, a testament to the show's ongoing appeal.  Miami Vice currently airs on Centric. 


 

      Miami Vice Creation - It was rumored that the head of NBC's Entertainment Division, Brandon Tartikoff, wrote a brainstorming memo that simply read "MTV cops", and later presented the memo to series creator Anthony Yerkovich, formerly a writer and producer for Hill Street Blues. Yerkovich, however, indicates that he devised the concept after learning about asset forfeiture statutes that allow law enforcement agencies to confiscate the property of convicted drug dealers for official use.  The initial idea was for a movie about a pair of vice cops in Miami. Yerkovich then turned out a script for a two-hour pilot, titled "Gold Coast", but later renamed, Miami Vice. Yerkovich was immediately drawn to South Florida as a setting for his new-style police show. Miami Vice was one of the first American network television programs to be broadcast in stereophonic sound. It was mixed in stereo for its entire run, but not actually broadcast in stereo until 1985.   ( from Wikipedia.com - READ MORE ABOUT THE SHOW )

 

 

 

      Miami Vice Theme - In keeping with the show's namesake, most episodes focused on combating drug trafficking and prostitution. Episodes more often than not ended in a large gun battle, claiming the lives of several criminals before they could be apprehended. An undercurrent of cynicism and futility underlied the entire series; the detectives repeatedly reference the "whack-a-mole" nature of drug interdiction, with its parade of drug cartels to replace those that are brought to justice. 

      The choice of music and cinematography borrowed heavily from the emerging culture of the 1980s. As such, segments of Miami Vice would sometimes use music-based stanzas, a technique later featured in Baywatch. As Lee H. Katzin, one of the show's directors, remarked, "The show is written for an MTV audience, which is more interested in images, emotions and energy than plot and character and words."  These elements made the series into an instant hit, and in its first season saw an unprecedented 15 Emmy Award nominations.  While the first few episodes contained elements of a standard police procedural, the producers soon abandoned them in favor of a more distinctive style. Of the many different production aspects of the show, "no earth tones" were allowed to be used. The series went beyond the normal film of a television show to use a three camera set-up, the same as used with a feature film.  ( from Wikipedia.com - READ MORE ABOUT THE SHOW )

 

 

 

 

   Miami Vice - The cast -   Nick Nolte and Jeff Bridges were considered for the role of Sonny Crockett, but since it was not lucrative for film stars to venture into television at the time, other candidates were considered. Mickey Rourke was also considered for the role, but he turned the offer down. Larry Wilcox, of CHiPs, was also a candidate for the role of Crockett, but the producers felt that going from one police officer role to another was not going to be a good fit. After dozens of candidates and twice delayed pilot shooting, Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas were chosen as the vice cops. For Johnson, who was by then 35 years old, NBC had particular doubts about the several earlier unsuccessful pilots in which he had starred. After two seasons, Johnson threatened to walk from the series as part of a highly publicized contract dispute. The network was ready to replace him with Mark Harmon, who had recently departed St. Elsewhere, but the network and Johnson were able to resolve their differences and he continued with the series until its end. Actor Jimmy Smits played Eddie Rivera, Crockett's partner who is killed in the option of the pilot episode.

 

      Miami Vice is noted for its innovative use of stereo broadcast music, particularly countless pop and rock hits of the 1980s and the distinctive, synthesized instrumental music of Jan Hammer. While other television shows used made-for-TV music, Miami Vice would spend $10,000 or more per episode to buy the rights to original recordings. Getting a song played on Miami Vice was a boost to record labels and artists. In fact, some newspapers, such as USA Today, would let readers know the songs that would be featured that week. Among the many well-known bands and artists who contributed their music to the show were Roger Daltrey, El Debarge, Devo, Russ Ballard, Black Uhuru, Jackson Browne, Kate Bush, Meat Loaf, Phil Collins, Bryan Adams, Tina Turner, Peter Gabriel, Pink Floyd, ZZ Top, The Tubes, Dire Straits, Depeche Mode, The Hooters, Iron Maiden, The Alan Parsons Project, Glenn Frey, U2, Frankie Goes to Hollywood, Foreigner, The Police, Ted Nugent, Suicidal Tendencies, and Billy Idol. Several artists even guest-starred in episodes, including Phil Collins, Miles Davis, Glenn Frey, Suicidal Tendencies, Willie Nelson, Ted Nugent, Frank Zappa, The Fat Boys, Sheena Easton, and Gene Simmons. An iconic scene from the Miami Vice pilot involves Crockett and Tubbs driving through Miami at night to Phil Collins's megahit song "In the Air Tonight".  (here's the famous car shot during the drive sequence)

     Jan Hammer credits executive producer Michael Mann for allowing him great creative freedom in scoring Miami Vice. The collaboration resulted in memorable instrumental pieces, including the show's title theme, which climbed to the top of the U.S. Billboard charts in November 1985. The Miami Vice original soundtrack, featuring Jan Hammer's No. 1 hit theme song and Glenn Frey's "Smuggler's Blues" and "You Belong to the City" (a No. 2 hit), stayed on the top of the U.S. album chart for 11 weeks in 1985, making it the most successful TV soundtrack at the time. The "Miami Vice Theme" was so popular that it also garnered two Grammy Awards in 1986. It was also voted No. 1 theme song of all time by TV Guide readers."Crockett's Theme", another recurring tune from the show, became a No. 1 hit in several European countries in 1987.

      During the show's run, three official soundtrack albums with original music from the episodes were released. Hammer has released several albums with music from the series; among them are Escape from Television (1987), Snapshots (1989), and after many requests from fans, Miami Vice: The Complete Collection (2002).

       Miami Vice locations - many episodes of were filmed in the South Beach section of Miami Beach, an area which, at the time, was blighted by poverty and crime. Some street corners of South Beach were so run down that the production crew actually decided to repaint the exterior walls of some buildings before filming. The crew went to great lengths to find the correct settings and props. Bobby Roth recalled, "I found this house that was really perfect, but the color was sort of beige. The art department instantly painted the house gray for me. Even on feature films people try to deliver what is necessary but no more. At Miami Vice they start with what's necessary and go beyond it."

Miami Vice is to some degree credited with causing a wave of support for the preservation of Miami's famous Art Deco architecture in the mid-1980s to early 1990s; and quite a few of those buildings, among them many beachfront hotels, have been renovated since filming, making that part of South Beach one of South Florida's most popular places for tourists and celebrities.

Other places commonly filmed in the series included scenes around Broward and Palm Beach counties. Sex was a key element for VICE with sexy homes, sexy beaches, clothes, cars and hot ladies. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

       Miami Vice played host to many many notable actors, actresses, musicians, comedians, athletes, celebrities, appeared throughout the show's five season run. They played many different roles from drug dealer to undercover cops to madams.  Notable musicians include Sheena Easton, Willie Nelson, Gene Simmons, and Ted Nugent Additionally Glenn Frey, Frank Zappa, Phil Collins, Miles Davis, Frankie Valli, Little Richard, James Brown, Leonard Cohen, the band Power Station, Coati Mundi, Isaac Hayes,  and Eartha Kitt.

Non-acting personalities included auto executive Lee Iacocca and Watergate conspirator G. Gordon Liddy. Athletes included Boston Celtics center Bill Russell, Bernard King, Racecar driver Danny Sullivan, and boxers Roberto Durán, and Randall "Tex" Cobb, A.J. Duhe (Miami Dolphins), Don King (boxing promoter). 

Notable actors of 80's included Dean Stockwell, Pam Grier (mulitple appearances), Ron Perlman (hellboy) Clarence Williams III (mod squad), and Brian Dennehy.  Up-and-coming actors and actresses included Laurence Fishburne (matrix), Viggo Mortensen (Hobbit movies), Dennis Farina, Stanley Tucci, Jimmy Smits (la law), Bruce McGill, David Strathairn, Ving Rhames, Liam Neeson, Lou Diamond Phillips, Bruce Willis (Die Hard), Ed O'Neill (Married With Children), and Julia Roberts (Pretty Woman). Additionally Michael Madsen, Ian McShane, Bill Paxton (aliens), Luis Guzmán, Kyra Sedgwick, Esai Morales, Terry O'Quinn, Joaquim de Almeida, Wesley Snipes (blade), John Turturro, and Melanie Griffith, Steve Buscemi (Armageddon), Anette Bening, Vanity, Kelly Lynch, Lori Petty, Oliver Platt (three muskateers), Rita Moreno, Robert Beltran (star trek voyager), Joan Chen (judge dredd), to name a few.

Future comedians included: John Leguizamo, David Rasche, Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, Tommy Chong, Richard Belzer, and Penn Jillette.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

    Miami Vice Fashion Statement -- The clothes had a significant influence on men's fashion. They popularized, if not invented, the "T-shirt under Armani jacket"-style, and popularized Italian men's fashion in the United States. Don Johnson's typical attire of Italian sport coat, T-shirt, white linen pants, and slip-on sockless loafers became a hit. Even Crockett's perpetually unshaven appearance sparked a minor fashion trend, inspiring men to wear a small amount of beard stubble, also known as a five o'clock shadow (or "designer stubble") at all times. In an average episode, Crockett and Tubbs wore five to eight outfits, appearing in shades of pink, blue, green, peach, fuchsia, and the show's other "approved" colors. Designers such as Vittorio Ricci, Gianni Versace, and Hugo Boss were consulted in keeping the male leads looking trendy. Costume designer Bambi Breakstone, who traveled to Milan, Paris, and London in search of new clothes, said that, "The concept of the show is to be on top of all the latest fashion trends in Europe." Jodi Tillen, the costume designer for the first season, along with Michael Mann, set the style. The abundance of pastel colors on the show reflected Miami's Art-deco architecture.  

      During its five-year run, consumer demand for unconstructed blazers, shiny fabric jackets, and lighter pastels increased. After Six formal wear even created a line of Miami Vice dinner jackets, Kenneth Cole introduced Crockett and Tubbs shoes, and Macy's opened a Miami Vice section in its young men's department. Crockett also boosted Ray Ban's popularity by wearing a pair of Ray-Ban Wayfarer, which increased sales of Ray Bans to 720,000 units in 1984. In the spring of 1986, an electric razor became available called the Stubble Device, that allowed users to have a beard like Don Johnson's character. Initially, it was named the Miami Device by Wahl, but in the end the company wanted to avoid a trademark infringement lawsuit. Many of the styles popularized by the TV show, such as the t-shirt under pastel suits, no socks, rolled up sleeves, and Ray-Ban sunglasses, have today become the standard image of 1980s culture. The influence of Miami Vice's fashions continued into the early 1990s, and to some extent still persists today.

 

 


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