Produced by Aaron Spelling and Leonard Goldberg, The Rookies was the pilot film for the popular early-1970s cop series of the same name. The story centers upon the training of three young rookie cops, played by Michael Ontkean, Georg Stanford Brown and Sam Melville. Darren McGavin is their tough-talking, golden-hearted superior officer. When the Rookies series proper debuted in 1972, Ontkean, Melville and Brown were retained in the cast, but Darren McGavin was replaced by Gerald S. O'Loughlin. Also replaced was Jennifer Billingsley as Sam Melville's wife; the new "Jill Danko" was Kate Jackson.
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