CHiPs: The Ride Out of Spanish Harlem

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CHiPs: The Ride Out of Spanish Harlem
Episode # N/A
Air Date Volume 1 DVD extra
Briefing N/A

Brief Plot

Erik Estrada profile featurette


CHiPs: The Ride Out of Spanish Harlem takes a look at how Erik Estrada went from a kid selling snowcones on the streets of Harlem to portraying an officer of the California Highway Patrol.

Erik tells how he lost his temper and punched a door after messing up a line during his audition. Seeing his frustration, they said, "That's him! That's Ponch!" It had been reduced from 500 guys to just two when he met Larry Wilcox for a screen test.

Many of the roles he had previously been cast in were bad guys, including shooting a priest on Hawaii Five-O. His casting was groundbreaking since there had never been a male Latino actor on a one hour action/drama show before.

The show itself was based on stories from real highway patrolmen. They would use unopened sections of freeways to perform their car chase scenes.

Since "CHiPs" started airing, the CHP has seen an increase in applications to become motorcycle officers.


Buy this documentary