Arnie Kogen

Writer


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

Tab

About
About this interview

In his two-and-a-half-hour interview, Arnie Kogen talks about his early life and writing for "Mad Magazine" starting in 1959. He recalls early gigs writing for the nightclub acts of Jackie Vernon and Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme, and later being on the writing staff of Candid Camera. He recounts writing for The Golden Globes, for the hosts of The Academy Awards, and for The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. He chronicles his stint as a writer on The Carol Burnett Show, detailing working with the cast, and in particular Tim Conway, and writing several well-known and recurring sketches for the series. He speaks of writing on several sitcoms, including The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The New Dick Van Dyke Show, The Bob Newhart Show, and the four years he spent on the writing staff of Newhart. He discusses writing for the ‘70s variety shows Donny & Marie and The Jacksons, and Alan Thicke’s ‘80s talk show Thicke of the Night. He concludes by discussing his writing process, discussing what he likes about writing, and giving advice to aspiring television writers. Stephen J. Abramson conducted the interview in a joint venture with the Writers Guild Foundation on December 12, 2016 in Los Angeles, CA.

“The best thing is when it finally happens. You come up with a great concept or idea or a one liner, and say, ‘Wow, that’s fantastic.’ Just writing something really great, and realizing ‘Hey, this is special.’”

Highlights
Arnie Kogen on being hired to write for The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, and on the process of writing for the show
04:40
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Bob Newhart Show and Newhart
06:16
Arnie Kogen on his writing process
05:12
Arnie Kogen on going to write for The Carol Burnett Show, and on working with Carol Burnett
04:44
Arnie Kogen on writing for "Mad Magazine"
06:03
Arnie Kogen on advice to an aspiring writer
00:42
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early life and influences; on television he watched growing up, and on his college education where he started to write; on writing for "Mad Magazine" and MadTv
On when he first realized he was funny, and when he started to write for comedians like Jackie Vernon and Jack Paar; on writing for Candid Camera and working for Allen Funt; on being hired to write for The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson and on the process of writing for the show
On writing for The Dean Martin Show; on writing for The Funny Side; on writing for the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards
On going to write for The Carol Burnett Show and working with Carol Burnett; on working with Joe Hamilton, the producer of The Carol Burnett Show, and on a typical work week writing for the show; on specific sketches he was involved in writing on The Carol Burnett Show and on writing for Tim Conway
On the cast of The Carol Burnett Show breaking each other up during sketches; on the cast of The Carol Burnett Show; on specific sketches he wrote for The Carol Burnett Show, and on the writing process for the show

Chapter 2

On incorporating guest stars into sketches on The Carol Burnett Show; on teaming with Ray Jessel to write for The Carol Burnett Show, and on winning Emmy Awards for the show; on the legacy of The Carol Burnett Show, and on writing for Love, American Style
On writing for various series, including The New Dick Van Dyke Show, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Mary, The Bob Newhart Show, and Newhart; on coming up with ideas for Newhart; on specific episodes of Newhart
On writing for Donny & Marie and The Jacksons; on the decline of the variety show; on writing for Thicke of the Night
On writing for Empty Nest; on writing for various shows in the '90s including The Sinbad Show and The Gary Owens All-Nonsense News Network; on writing for Ace Crawford, Private Eye starring Tom Conway, and for All-American Girl

Chapter 3

On what he likes about writing and on writing in groups; on continuing to write for "Mad Magazine" and how he juggles it with his television work; on joining the Writers Guild and on his retirement
On how the television industry has changed since he started and on his then-current television favorites; on his mentors, and on his son, Jay Kogen; on advice to an aspiring writer; on career achievements and regrets, and how he'd like to be remembered
Shows

Academy Awards, The

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards
03:12

Ace Crawford, Private Eye

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for Ace Crawford, Private Eye and All-American Girl
02:21

Bob Newhart Show, The (1972-78)

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Bob Newhart Show and Newhart
06:18

Candid Camera

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for Candid Camera and working for Allen Funt
03:52

Carol Burnett Show, The (1967-78)

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on going to write for The Carol Burnett Show
02:19
Arnie Kogen on working with Carol Burnett on The Carol Burnett Show
02:24
Arnie Kogen on working with Joe Hamilton, the producer of The Carol Burnett Show, and on a typical work week writing for the show
01:54
Arnie Kogen on specific sketches he was involved in writing on The Carol Burnett Show, and on writing for Tim Conway
06:17
Arnie Kogen on the cast of The Carol Burnett Show breaking each other up during sketches
02:09
Arnie Kogen on the cast of The Carol Burnett Show
01:37
Arnie Kogen on specific sketches he wrote for The Carol Burnett Show, and on the writing process for the show
03:05
Arnie Kogen on incorporating guest stars into sketches on The Carol Burnett Show
02:29
Arnie Kogen on teaming with Ray Jessel to write for The Carol Burnett Show
04:10
Arnie Kogen on the legacy of The Carol Burnett Show
01:22
Arnie Kogen on winning Emmy Awards for his work on The Carol Burnett Show
01:15

Dean Martin Show, The

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Dean Martin Show
04:51

Donny & Marie

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for Donny & Marie
06:52

Emmy Awards, The (Primetime and Daytime)

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on winning Emmy Awards for his work on The Carol Burnett Show
01:15

Empty Nest

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for Empty Nest
05:37

Funny Side, The

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Funny Side
03:21

Golden Girls, The

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards
03:12

Jacksons, The

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Jacksons, featuring the Jackson family and Michael Jackson
03:46

Love, American Style

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for Love, American Style
02:22

MADtv

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on his involvement with MADtv
01:12

New Dick Van Dyke Show, The

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for The New Dick Van Dyke Show, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and Mary
04:20

Newhart

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Bob Newhart Show and Newhart
06:18
Arnie Kogen on coming up with ideas for Newhart
03:45
Arnie Kogen on writing specific episodes of Newhart
02:32

Thicke of the Night

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for Thicke of the Night, featuring Alan Thicke
02:35

Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, The

View Show Page
Arnie Kogen on being hired to write for The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, and on the process of writing for the show
04:40
Topics

Advice

View Topic
Arnie Kogen on advice to an aspiring writer
00:42

Creative Influences and Inspiration

View Topic
Arnie Kogen on his mentors, and on his son, Jay Kogen
03:07

Pivotal Career Moments

View Topic
Arnie Kogen on his mentors, and on his son, Jay Kogen
03:07

Television Industry

View Topic
Arnie Kogen on how the television industry has changed since he started and on his then-current television favorites
01:17
Arnie Kogen on advice to an aspiring writer
00:42
Professions

Writers

View Profession
Arnie Kogen on his writing process
05:12
Arnie Kogen on what he likes about writing, and on writing in groups
03:00
Arnie Kogen on continuing to write for "Mad Magazine" and how he juggles it with his television work
01:28
Arnie Kogen on joining the Writers Guild and on his retirement
01:11
Arnie Kogen on advice to an aspiring writer
00:42
Genres

Awards Shows

View Genre
Arnie Kogen on writing for the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards
03:13

Comedy Series

View Genre
Arnie Kogen on writing for Candid Camera
03:52
Arnie Kogen on writing for Love, American Style
02:20
Arnie Kogen on writing for The New Dick Van Dyke Show, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and Mary
04:20
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Bob Newhart Show and Newhart
12:36
Arnie Kogen on writing for Empty Nest
05:37
Arnie Kogen on writing for various shows in the '90s including The Sinbad Show and The Gary Owens All-Nonsense News Network
03:48
Arnie Kogen on writing for Ace Crawford, Private Eye starring Tom Conway, and for All-American Girl
02:21

Music Shows & Variety Shows/Specials

View Genre
Arnie Kogen on his involvement with MadTV
01:12
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Dean Martin Show
04:51
Arnie Kogen on going to write for The Carol Burnett Show
19:53
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Carol Burnett Show
09:16
Arnie Kogen on writing for Donny & Marie
06:52
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Jacksons
03:46

Talk Shows

View Genre
Arnie Kogen on being hired to write for The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson
04:40
Arnie Kogen on writing for Thicke of the Night
02:35
People

Carol Burnett

View Interview Page
Arnie Kogen on working with Carol Burnett on The Carol Burnett Show
04:44

Johnny Carson

View Person Page
Arnie Kogen on being hired to write for The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson
04:40

Tim Conway

View Interview Page
Arnie Kogen on the cast of The Carol Burnett Show: Tim Conway
00:26
Arnie Kogen on writing for Ace Crawford, Private Eye starring Tom Conway, and for All-American Girl
02:21

Allen Funt

View Person Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for Candid Camera and working for Allen Funt
03:52

Eydie Gorme

View Person Page
Arnie Kogen on writing material for Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme, and for other entertainers
03:20

Joe Hamilton

View Person Page
Arnie Kogen on working with Joe Hamilton, the producer of The Carol Burnett Show, and on a typical work week writing for the show
01:54

Michael Jackson

View Person Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Jacksons, featuring the Jackson family and Michael Jackson
03:46

Harvey Korman

View Interview Page
Arnie Kogen on the cast of The Carol Burnett Show: Harvey Korman
00:23

Steve Lawrence

View Person Page
Arnie Kogen on writing material for Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme, and for other entertainers
03:20

Vicki Lawrence

View Interview Page
Arnie Kogen on the cast of The Carol Burnett Show: Vicki Lawrence
00:33

Dean Martin

View Person Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Dean Martin Show
04:51

Bob Newhart

View Interview Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for The Bob Newhart Show and Newhart
12:36

Donny Osmond

View Person Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for Donny & Marie starring Donny and Marie Osmond
06:52

Marie Osmond

View Person Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for Donny & Marie starring Donny and Marie Osmond
06:52

Alan Thicke

View Person Page
Arnie Kogen on writing for Thicke of the Night, featuring Alan Thicke
02:35

Lyle Waggoner

View Person Page
Arnie Kogen on the cast of The Carol Burnett Show: Lyle Waggoner
00:15

All Interviews

Q
S