In 1973, Chuck appeared with Charlton Heston in Soylent Green, a science fiction look at a future world of gross over-population and limited resources. The film takes place in New York in the year 2022. A city of over 40 million people, the New York populace struggled to find a place to live and have enough food to eat. It was a very grim place to try to exist and survive. Chuck played Tab Fielding, the bodyguard to wealthy and influential William Simonson played by Joseph Cotton. The murder of Simonson is investigated by cynical police Detective Thorn played by Heston. The investigation leads to a disturbing discovery regarding the main source of food being supplied to the hungry populace. The secret of Soylent Green.
This film has a wonderful cast, including Edward G. Robinson in his final role as Sol Roth. Robinson's character was a mentor to Detective Thorn (Heston), who remembers how the world used to be and longed for its return. Edward G. Robinson passed away from cancer just 12 days after the movie was completed. Also appearing in the film was respected actor Brock Peters, who played Detective Thorn's boss, Chief Hatcher and Leigh Taylor Young who played Shirl, a kept woman or furniture for Joseph Cotton's character. Shirl would later become Thorn's love interest. Whit Bissell, who had worked with Chuck on three episodes of The Rifleman, appeared as Governor Santini and Chuck's future wife, Faith Quabius, had a minor role in the film. This was the second time Chuck worked with Charlton Heston, the first being the acclaimed western, The Big Country. Chuck did a fine job of playing a menacing character and he and Charlton had several great scenes together.