The Man From U.N.C.L.E.rated so highly in America and the UK that MGM and the producers decided to film extra footage (often more adult to evoke Bond films) for two of the first season episodes and release them to theaters after they had aired on TV. The episodes with the extra footage that made it to theaters were the original pilot, "The Vulcan Affair", retitledTo Trap a Spyand "The Double Affair" retitled asThe Spy with My Face. Both had added sex and violence, new sub-plots and guest stars not in the original TV episodes. They were released in early 1966 as anU.N.C.L.E.double-feature program first run in neighborhood theaters, bypassing the customary downtown movie palaces which were still thriving in the mid-1960s and where new movies usually played for weeks or months before coming to outlying screens.
A selling point to seeing these films theatrically was that they were being shown in color, at a time when most people had only black and white TVs (and indeed the two first-season episodes that were expanded to feature length, while filmed in color, had only been broadcast in black and white). The words "in color" featured prominently on the trailers, TV spots, and posters for the film releases. The episodes used to make U.N.C.L.E. films were not included in the packages of television episodes screened outside the United States.[page needed]
Subsequent two-part episodes, beginning with the second season premiere, "Alexander The Greater Affair", retitledOne Spy Too Manyfor its theatrical release, were developed into one complete feature film with only occasional extra sexy and violent footage added to them, sometimes as just inserts. In the case ofOne Spy Too Many,a subplot featuringYvonne Craigas an U.N.C.L.E. operative carrying on a flirtatious relationship with Solo was also added to the film; Craig does not appear in the television episodes.
The later films were not released in America, only overseas, but the first few did well in American theaters and remain one of the rare examples of a television show released in paid theatrical engagements. With the exception of the two-part episode "The Five Daughters Affair", shown as part ofGranada Plus's run of the series, the episodes which became movies have never aired on British television.