Sally was the spirited and daffy younger wife of San Francisco police commissioner Stewart McMillan (Rock Hudson). The two epitomized hip married couples of the late 1960s and early 1970s. They wore the modern styles of clothes and hair and fashion, and attended society events and upscale parties when they weren't solving crimes.

Although she had no experience in law enforcement (or any other profession, for that matter), Sally jumped in and aided “Mac,” an attorney turned lawman, crack cases in the City by the Bay.

The lovable brunette was nominated for four Emmys for playing Sally McMillan.
“McMillan and Wife” was one of three popular Sunday night NBC Mystery Movies in the 1970s. Filming just six or seven episodes per season, “McMillan” rotated with “Columbo” and “McCloud.” Hudson was reportedly the highest paid actor on TV when “McMillan & Wife” aired (1971-77).

Susan had a contract dispute with the studio and departed from the show after the fifth season to work in feature films. The series continued a final season as “McMillan” and Sally's departure was explained that she'd died in a plane crash.

Almost decade later Susan returned to television to play impulsive and free spirited Kate McArdle in “Kate & Allie,” a series about two divorced women who shared a crowded apartment in New York. Kate and her roommate (Jane Curtin) were atypical characters on TV at the time, independent and strong women.

“Kate & Allie” was rated No. 8 in the Nielsens its first season and was a Top 20 show its first four seasons. Susan was nominated for three Emmys, while Curtin won two Emmys for Best Actress in a Comedy Series.
Barbara Bain "Mission Impossible" Cinnamon Carter
Classic TV Beautiesw
No. 31
Classic TV Beauties 1970s Countdown
SUSAN SAINT JAMES as Sally McMillan in "McMillan & Wife"
Born in Los Angeles as Susan Miller to a family from Connecticut, Susan was raised in Rockford, Illinois. She began modeling as a teen-ager in New York after her brother married a model.

“I never knew anyone could be so tall and thin,” she told the Rockford newspaper. She continued her modeling career in Paris, where she was “able to hobnob a little more with thin people... It was a good step, but it was not the most thrilling job in the world for me.”

As a girl she often pretended to be Natalie Wood after going to the movies in Rockford. When she turned 19 she changed her last name to Saint James and moved to Hollywood to fulfill her acting aspirations.

Without any previous acting experience, she was cast as magazine researcher Peggy Maxwell in the 1966 TV movie “Fame is the Name of the Game.”
A year later, Susan's resume included guest appearances in “Ironsides,” and  she became a regular in the TV series “The Name of the Game” (1968-1971).

Susan felt that her acting was limited on “McMillan.”

“I had a lot of problems when I first decided to leave the show with people wanting me to play the same character, glamorous and the wife of an older man,” she told interviewer Carolyn Jackson in 1978. “I say, I';m still young. Give me a chance to play some parts at my own age where I could be out having a little action.

“Every week [on “McMillan & Wife”] we'd get these drug addicts and alcoholics and sleazy types, and these actors would be acting up a storm, and I'd be doing the same thing.”
Kate Jackson "Charlie's Angels" Sabrina Duncan
Susan Saint James "McMillan & Wife" Sally McMillan
Susan got an opportunity to expand her acting skills when she played Tina Waters, girlfriend to an underground hero in the 1977 film “Outlaw Blues.”

“It was fun being on the other side,” she said. “Being the conniving one."

After “Kate and Allie,” Susan slowed down her work schedule. After she met and married producer Dick Ebersol, she joked that every time she took a break from acting, she became pregnant.

Ironically, while the character Sally McMillan had been killed in an plane crash, tragedy struck the Ebersol family in real life almost thirty years later. In 2004 Dick Ebersol and two of Susan's sons were involved in a plane crash that killed their youngest son Teddy. Ebersol and son Charles survived.

Looking back on her two most popular TV series, Susan recalled:

"The 'Kate & Allie's" are the hardest to watch because the hairdo's and the styles,” she said in an interview with “I just haven't come to terms with the '80s yet. I'm just like, 'What was I thinking with that mullet and those shoulders?' I mean, it's just awful.

“The "McMillians" are the most fun to watch because they're so wonderful and it was so much fun to do. And they're from so long ago. It's almost like watching period movies."
Susan Saint James "McMillan & Wife" Sally McMillan
Susan Saint James "McMillan & Wife" Sally McMillan
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