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WORTH NOTING ON TV

By Alan Bunce / April 25, 1995



* WEDNESDAY

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Inside the Actors Studio (Bravo, 10-11 p.m.): To many, the Actors Studio calls to mind Marlon Brando as the has-been fighter in ''On the Waterfront'' or some other naturalistic, deeply personal performance.

That approach to acting -- called ''the Method'' -- emanates from the Studio's home on Manhattan's 44th Street, and for years was personified by its most famous teacher, the late Lee Strasberg. The Studio added a new and electrifying life to the stage and screen -- emotional realism and natural readings, in place of studied deliveries.

Now the notoriously private place is giving viewers an idea of what goes on there through this new weekly series. Each hour-long show offers an interview (before an audience at the New School in New York) with a renowned actor who has studied the Method. The program also shows him or her teaching a master class.

Paul Newman is featured in the premiere, which shows how the Studio is now reaching out to a new generation. James Lipton is host.

* FRIDAY

The Fall of Saigon (The Discovery Channel, 9-11 p.m.): Those epochal images of desperate crowds, a helicopter hovering over the United States embassy, and outstretched arms still haunt many Americans.

Twenty years after the Americans pulled out of Saigon, this detailed documentary -- a Discovery Journal special -- reconstructs the bitter historic event through the eyes of everyone from former President Gerald Ford, who gave the final order to evacuate, to anonymous South Vietnamese civilians.

This program offers footage taken during the siege of the city by North Vietnamese forces. It solicits comments from former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, military officers on both sides, and veteran reporters who were there.

Other interviews highlight the sense of betrayal felt by South Vietnamese friends of the US who were promised rescue, then abandoned as panic and chaos closed over the city.

Garrick Utley narrates.

Please check local listings for these programs.