When CHP was founded, a special documentary was the first project. William Gillette: A Connecticut Yankee and the American Stage is a half hour documentary. Filmed on location at Gillette's Castle in Hadlyme and throughout Connecticut, it features an interview with Helen Hayes, the first lady of the American Theatre and Gillette protégé.
The film focuses on the life and artistic achievements of the actor, playwright, and master stage craftsman, William Hooker Gillette, who immortalized the role of Sherlock Holmes on stage for over 30 years. After its debut at the Wadsworth Athenaeum in Hartford, CT. on June 6, 1986, it was aired on Connecticut Public Television on July 11, 1994.