November 7, 1992


New “Sisters” hunk: The four siblings in “Sisters,” the NBC series airing Saturday nights at 10 on KING, certainly have their troubles with men.

The exception may be Georgie, who seems to have a pretty solid marriage. However, Frankie married her sister’s ex-husband, and their relationship is alternately passionate and stormy. Alex found her ideal doctor-husband cheating, divorced him, but later took him back. Even the mother of this quartet has remarried.

That left only the beautiful, impetuous Teddy without a man in her life. That is, until recently.

The producers of “Sisters” searched high and low to fill the role of Simon Bolt, a self-made multimillionaire/entrepreneur with smoldering good looks.

They found him in British actor Mark Frankel, who burst upon the scene, offering Teddy the chance of a lifetime by bankrolling her dress-designing business. It started as all business, but sexual tension erupted every time Teddy (Sela Ward) and Simon shared the screen.

Since these vibrations translated into bigger ratings, it looks as if Simon Bolt will be around awhile.

“I’ve signed for a minimum of 12 episodes in the series,” Frankel said, “but it could go beyond that, if the character really catches on.”

“I love working with Sela. She has a wonderful spontaneity. It’s also a great deal of fun to play a man who seems to have everything but doesn’t let down his guard for very long. Bolt is complex and unpredictable, and I enjoy that aspect of the character.”

Frankel has had an abundance of good luck in his career, which he readily admits.

It would seem that Mark, who was born in London, was destined to toil in the fine arts. His grandfather was a concert violinist and his grandmother played the piano. After high school, he won a coveted three-year scholarship to London’s Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Arts. He got a job in the theater before graduating, and he was a scant three weeks out of school when he won the leading role in the multimillion-dollar TNT miniseries “Michelangelo: A Season of Giants.”

“It all happened so fast,” Frankel said, “I really didn’t have time to dwell on the full impact. I had no time to give in to doubts and fears. I had to plunge right in and do the best I could.”

“It’s ironic, but weeks before I was cast, I went to the Victoria-Albert Museum, turned a corner, and there in front of me was the fantastic ‘David’ by Michelangelo. It was so impressive, it took your breath away. Little did I dream then, that in a matter of weeks, I would be on the set in Italy, playing Michelangelo chiseling on the ‘David’.”

Mark followed “A Season of Giants” with another TNT miniseries, “Young Catherine,” playing the dashing Count Orlov with Vanessa Redgrave and Maximillian Schell. The busy young actor also made a movie, “Leon, the Pig Farmer,” which won awards at various film festivals and is slated to open in February.

Frankel’s stint on “Sisters” should find him a whole new audience and bring him to the attention of Hollywood producers and directors.