Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? Before he was ever cast, Earl Holliman ran into Rod Serling in the CBS parking lot. They were talking about Serling’s new pilot he was going to shoot, and that a big name celebrity wanted too much money for the starring role. That same day, Holliman was sent the script, and that night he read it. He was shocked and thrilled, later remarking, “The hair was standing up on the back of my neck.”
Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? The beginning sequence in the café was shot on the first day.
Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? At the beginning of shooting, Holliman was sick, but he didn’t realize just how sick he was. After the first day, he went home, and was shocked to see he had a 102 degree fever.
Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? To this day, Holliman says that he’d like to go back and take another shot at the role, saying “I just feel uncomfortable about some of the stuff that I did. You know, it’s…a…could have been more real, it could have been more natural.”
Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? Whenever Holliman tried to talk to director Robert Stevens about the role, Stevens would go away to answer the phone. At the end of the shoot, Stevens admitted to Holliman that he isn’t the kind of director that likes to talk to actors about their parts.
Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? The entire episode was shot on the Court House Square section of the Universal Studios’ backlot, made famous by the Back to the Future series. It is the only episode of The Twilight Zone to have been shot there.
Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? On one of the last set-ups of the first day of shooting, just before dark, Holliman heard the camera operator say, “Uh oh.” He never knew exactly what happened, but somehow the entire day’s film was ruined, so they couldn’t use a single shot.
Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? The episode took about 5 or 6 days to shoot. A relatively long time for a seemingly simple half hour show.
Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? While shooting the phone booth scene, Holliman asked Rod Serling if what if his character ripped a page from the phone book, put it in his pocket, and then it’s shown falling out of his pocket when he’s back in the “real world”. Serling told him that unfortunately the network wouldn’t allow it, because they wanted a show based in reality. Ironically, what The Twilight Zone eventually became is far from that.
Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? When Mike Ferris reads names out of the directory in the phone booth, actor Earl Holliman used names of people he knew. One of the names, Belote, was his stepfather’s name.
Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? The scene where Mike Ferris gets seemingly trapped in the phone booth, only to find that it is a “pull” door instead of a push, was written by Rod Serling from personal experience. The same thing happened to him in real life at an airport.
Ep. 1 Where Is Everybody? The effect where Mike Ferris runs into the mirror was shot in two passes. First, they shot Holliman running into the mirror without it breaking and just falling backward. Then, they shot a pass without Holliman where the mirror is smashed with a sledgehammer from behind. When the two were combined, it seemed as if Holliman broke it upon contact, which would have of course been too dangerous for an actor to really do.