Robert Pine Interview

CHiPs Europe Interview with Robert Pine, May, 2005

We waited for a long time but now CHiPs Europe proudly presents an exclusive interview with the actor who played Sgt. Getraer: Robert Pine. Many thanks to Kathy Bartels who made this possible. Enjoy it, CHiPs fans.

CHiPs Europe: Hello Mr. Pine. Thanks for doing us the favor of talking to us. How are you?


R. Pine: Fine, thank you. And it?s a pleasure to talk to you. I appreciate your interest.


CHiPs Europe: Mia wants to know: You?re married to the same wife since 1969. What?s your secret?


R. Pine: Well, it always helps when you start off with the right partner which I guess I did. I would say that from the beginning Gwynne and I were committed to making this work. No marriage is problem free and ours is certainly no exception but we have never let the problems threaten the stability of our commitment to each other. Add to that a lot of patience, a good sense of humor and the ability to learn from each other and appreciate our differences. It?s hard to distill into a few sentences what makes a 35-year partnership work but I hope that answers it.


CHiPs Europe: Jan?s question: Did you enjoy playing Sgt. Getraer and/or has there been a time where you wanted to throw the whole thing?


R. Pine: I enjoyed playing Joe Getraer very much. During the first year I guess I was a little disappointed that I didn?t have more to do in each show but I soon began to appreciate my role in the show and I have never looked back. Also, I have grown to appreciate more and more over the years my association with the California Highway Patrol. It?s a terrific organization of very committed people who do a fine job for us here in California. I some great friends within the patrol.


CHiPs Europe: When you were hit by that screw coming off a truck in ?A Simple Operation?, did you do that stunt yourself?


R. Pine: (laughs) Oh, my god, no! They (the producers) would never let me do something like that even if I wanted to and believe me I didn?t. We had wonderful stunt people who did all our stunts. Whenever you (the viewer) can?t really see who is in the stunt or on the motorcycle you can be pretty sure it?s a stunt person doing the work. The main reason for this is that even if we were capable of doing the stunt the producers fear that you might get hurt. I don?t think they are that worried about your well being but that it would delay production. 


 CHiPs Europe: How was it to unite with Larry, Erik, Brodie and Paul for ChiPs ?99 and do you know what they?re doing today?


R. Pine: We had a terrific time on CHiPs ?99. It was a real kick to get back into the whole thing. We all appreciated the opportunity. As far as what everyone is doing, I speak to Paul, Brodie, Michael Dorn & Lou Wagner regularly. Lou had a New Years Day party which he has had for the last 30 years and I attended. He has taken some time off from the business to raise a young daughter but said he has just told his agent that he is now ready to go back to work . So hopefully you will be seeing him soon. Paul is doing a lot of theatre work, mostly directing. I play tennis with Michael regularly and he is trying to direct. Brodie is supplementing his acting work by involving himself in selling real estate. I haven?t talked to Eric in quite some time and Larry is involved with his own company which has something to do with computers. He?s quite an entrepreneur. 


 CHiPs Europe: What was the most embarrassing moment of your career?


R. Pine: Well, I hate to admit it but there have been lots of embarrassing moments. I guess that?s just a fact of life when you spend so much time in front of people. You learn to enjoy the laughs along with everybody else even when it?s at your own expense. One I remember that has relevance to ChiPs was when we were learning to ride the motorcycles before we even started the first show. Larry and Eric had ridden before but I was a true rookie at this. On police bikes at the time the throttle was on the right grip of the handlebar (that hasn?t changed) and when you accelerated you turned the grip in one direction and if you took your hand off the grip the acceleration remained the same. On today?s bikes if you take your hand off the accelerator it goes down to zero. So on that bike to de-accelerate you had to turn the throttle in the opposite direction. We were practicing around the old MGM lot on a Sunday when it was pretty well deserted and after a little while I was feeling pretty confident and so I was increasing my speed as I scooted around the lot. As I approached a turn where I had to either go left or right (there was no straight ahead) I panicked because I was now going too fast and instead of de-accelerating I turned the throttle in the wrong direction and accelerated straight ahead . . . right into a wall with a great crash. Everyone raced over and, of course, was very concerned that their new sergeant hand just bruised himself or worse. Well, I?m happy to say that the only thing that was injured was my pride and the bike had a number of dents and scratches. Also I was mighty embarrassed.


CHiPs Europe: Thank you for answering and God bless you and your family.


R. Pine: Thank you. I?ve enjoyed it. 


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