When fiction writer Michael Arlen began writing it was the time of the “Roaring Twenties” and “the Jazz Age.” In 1940, he wrote a short story for Town and Country Magazine called “Gay Falcon” about a freelance adventurer and troubleshooter whose fullname was Gay Stanhope Falcon.
The story was immediately purchased by RKO for a film starring George Sanders as the Falcon released in 1941 as “The Gay Falcon.” The biggest differences from the original story was the de-emphasis of the hard boiled detective and the name became Gay Lawrence. Why he was called “The Falcon” in the films never fully became clear except perhaps for his keen ability to find trouble and kill it.
radio saw a successful franchise as a possible dramatic vehicle for its medium. In 1943 “The Falcon” radio series premiered over NBC Blue starring Barry Kroeger as The Falcon under yet another name – Michael Waring. He later was replaced by James Meighan, Les Tremayne, George Petrie and finally Les Damon.