It Takes a Thief (1968–1970)
3 user

A Thief Is a Thief 

Master thief Alexander Mundy is paroled from prison by SIA special agent Noah Bain in order to steal for the United States government on special occasions.


Leslie Stevens

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Wagner ... Alexander Mundy
Senta Berger ... Claire Vickers
John Saxon ... Dead Man
Malachi Throne ... Noah Bain
Susan Saint James ... Stewardess Anne Edwards
Michael Forest ... Courier
Anita Eubank Anita Eubank ... Hilary Dickensen
Willi Koopman ... Jessica Hals
Stuart Margolin ... Prison Chaplain
Don 'Red' Barry ... Airline Captain (as Donald Barry)
Eddie 'Rochester' Anderson ... Concierge
Raymond Burr ... S.I.A. Bureau Chief
Wally Cox ... Tourist
Les Crane Les Crane
James Drury ... Mr. Clifton, Ticket Agent


Master thief Alexander Mundy is paroled from prison by SIA special agent Noah Bain in order to steal for the United States government on special occasions.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

expo 67 | world's fair | See All (2) »





Release Date:

9 January 1968 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


According to the 2011-release of the complete 18-disc complete series, the bonus-material DVD provides "The King of Thieves: An Interview with Robert Wagner", starting at the 1:00 minute mark and running until the 3:00 minute mark, Wagner states that he was called into the office of Universal Studios head Lou Wasserman in 1967 and offered the role of Alexander Mundy. Wagner demurred, saying that he wasn't sure he was interested in doing TV. Wasserman promised him if that Wagner made a pilot and it didn't sell to a network, Universal would produce a theatrical release.

Wagner goes on to say in the interview that he pilot was rejected by the networks and scrapped. Wasserman fulfilled his promised by producing an entirely new rewritten 99minute-long film stocked with actors under Universal option. Wagner says the film was released in theaters in Europe under the title "Magnificent Thief".

Wagner further states that while filming another project in South America he heard that on the basis of the theatrical release, the series had been picked up as a mid-season replacement. The initial episode was an awkwardly edited 75 minute-long cut of the theatrical release. This can be seen by the evidence of the opening credits where such cast members as Kurt Kasner and Joe Louis are absent in the missing 24 minutes and the plot makes no sense from the abrupt jump after fight scene in the stewardess' apartment in Washington, DC, to the sudden shift without explanation to the Montreal Sports Expo concluding the episode. The original 99 minute-long theatrical provides viewers with three scenes that explain the transition to the Expo missing in the shorter version. See more »


The enemy agents frequently refer to a collection of photos as a "cachet". This is a common mispronunciation of "cache" - which is correctly pronounced the same as "cash". See more »

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User Reviews

I'm looking forward to the rest of the series
23 August 2017 | by bensonmum2See all my reviews

Noah Bain, a big dog at the spy agency known as SIA, is tired of seeing his field agents killed one by one. He's convinced that a foreign power is behind the assassinations and the key lies in a special, heavily guarded briefcase. Thinking outside the box, Bain decides that the best way to steal the contents of the briefcase might be to employ the services of a real thief. He has master thief Alexander Mundy paroled from prison for the job. Can Mundy succeed where others have failed (and been killed)? To stay out of jail, he agrees to put his special talents to use for the government.

I've seen the odd episode of It Takes a Thief over the years, but it's been so long, I couldn't tell you which ones I've seen. I watched Episode 1 last night and really enjoyed it. For the most part, the writing is clever and the show has a nice pace to it. I enjoyed the breezy feel I got from Magnificent Thief (or is it A Thief is a Thief). Highlights for me included the scenes on the airplane (very funny) and the airport chase. Robert Wagner has a laid back style to him that works in a "light" show like It Takes a Thief. He would have made an excellent American James Bond in the style of Roger Moore. The supporting cast was both strong and interesting, with Senta Berger (she's good in just about everything), Susan Saint James, and, especially, John Saxon. There are several recognizable actors with bit parts. I got a real kick out of the confused passenger played by Wally Cox. My only issue comes with the final act. I didn't really care for the final shoot-out. I would have preferred to see the episode end after Mundy eludes the baddies at the airport. Still, Magnificent Thief was a lot of fun and I'm looking forward to the rest of the series.

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