Lancelot Link: Secret Chimp, the 1970s cult classic Saturday morning TV show, is getting a new life thanks to a spiffy new DVD set, and sales of the set will help save the home of the chimp that played Lancelot.
Film Chest will release a special 3-disc set of Lancelot Link on May 29, featuring all 17 episodes of the series that aired from 1970 to 1972. Using the original film masters from ABC to ensure the best image quality, the episodes will be presented in their original format and with their original mono soundtrack. This set will also include a number of extras, including behind the scenes information and interviews with Allan Sandler, the show’s original producer. A documentary short, “I Created Lancelot Link,” will also be included.
A previous release of the series on DVD by Image did not include all of the original episodes, and did not use the original film elements, resulting in a low-quality DVD set that fans largely criticized. This new set will mark the first time the complete series will be released using the best possible image elements, and with the cooperation of the original producers and ABC.
Fans of the show may be surprised to learn that the chimpanzee that played Lancelot is alive and well at Wildlife Waystation in Los Angeles, and a portion of the proceeds from sales of the new DVD set will pay for much-needed renovations there, which will ensure he lives out his years there.
The TV series followed the adventures of Lancelot Link, a secret agent chimp working for A.P.E., the Agency to Prevent Evil. Along the way, he fought a rouge’s gallery of villains from C.H.U.M.P. (Criminal Headquarters for Underworld Master Plan), including Baron Von Butcher, Dragon Lady, and Dr. Strangemind. Dayton Allen, Joan Gerber, and Bernie Kopell all provided voices for the show.