Chuck Barris

Game Show Creator/Host


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

Tab

About
About this interview

In his two-and-a-half-hour Archive interview, Chuck Barris (1929-2017) chronicles his career from NBC page to novelist. Barris tells how he bluffed his way into the NBC management training program (thanks to some creative and fabricated recommendations from RCA board members), as well as how he started down the path of game show innovator during his tenure at ABC Daytime. Off to a slow start with programs like People Poker, Barris soon found his stride, first with the popular show The Dating Game, and subsequently with hits The Newlywed Game and The Gong Show - the latter of which Barris himself hosted. He discusses why he believes he was an awful television host, recounts the creation of his production company, Chuck Barris Productions, and shares his recollections of a Newlywed Game contestant's infamous answer to the question, "Where is the weirdest place you've ever gotten the urge to make whoopee?" Also an accomplished author and songwriter, Barris comments on several well-known claims included in his book, "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind: An Unauthorized Autobiography" (was he really an assassin for the C.I.A.?) and describes his process for penning the work of which he's proudest -- the song "Palisades Park." Jim Colucci conducted the interview on June 10, 2010 in New York, NY. 

"I was never on drugs, but everybody thought I was. When they saw 'The Gong Show' and I would come out, they all thought I was whacked out of my mind. But I never did drugs. I had a public company. I had lots of television shows on the air. I had a daughter who was a druggie who I could see as an example. And I had no use for drugs at all. So I never did them. But I was excessive and my daughter was excessive and we chewed gum by the packs and stuff like that. But you know, I never drank on the show or ever had drugs."   

Highlights
Chuck Barris on censorship on The Newlywed Game and creating the term "making whoopee"
01:52
On his first creative venture - writing the song "Palisades Park"
01:16
On serving as a producer for The Dating Game
00:51
On whether or not he worked for the CIA
01:26
On how he got into the NBC management training program - by forging references from RCA board members
01:14
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his childhood and early influences; on one of his first jobs out of college as an NBC page in New York
06:57
On leaving NBC and working for ABC Daytime and getting involved with game shows
14:50
On developing The Dating Game - the format, music, design, selecting contestants, chaperones
27:46
On syndicating The Dating Game
01:15
On developing The Newlywed Game
09:30

Chapter 2

On The Newlywed Game
25:53
On syndicating The Newlywed Game and the beginnings of first-run syndication
03:38
On developing The Gong Show
34:25
On The Gong Show Movie and his daughter appearing on the show
03:37

Chapter 3

On The Gong Show staff
04:25
On some of his lesser known game shows: How's Your Mother-In-Law?, Operation Entertainment, The $1.98 Beauty Contest, and Treasure Hunt
10:50
On forming his own production company and later selling his shares
05:24
On his books You and Me, Babe, Confessions of a Dangerous Mind: An Unauthorized Autobiography, and Della: A Memoir of My Daughter
07:36
On his legacy, his proudest achievement and how he would like to be remembered
09:41
Shows

$1.98 Beauty Show, The

View Show Page
Chuck Barris on The $1.98 Beauty Show - a parody of a beauty pageant
02:54

Camouflage

View Show Page
Chuck Barris on his recollections of the game show Camouflage
00:31

Dating Game, The

View Show Page
Chuck Barris on developing The Dating Game
29:01
Chuck Barris on the appeal of The Dating Game for contestants
01:52
Chuck Barris on the contracts for The Dating Game
00:46

Gong Show, The

View Show Page
Chuck Barris on his difficulties hosting The Gong Show
00:42
Chuck Barris on The Gong Show
34:25
Chuck Barris on The Gong Show staff
01:54
Chuck Barris on the legacy of The Gong Show
02:31

How's Your Mother In Law?

View Show Page
Chuck Barris on the game show How's Your Mother In Law?
01:17

Newlywed Game, The

View Show Page
Chuck Barris on developing The Newlywed Game
09:30
Chuck Barris on The Newlywed Game
25:53

Operation Entertainment

View Show Page
Chuck Barris on Operation Entertainment
01:06

People Poker

View Show Page
Chuck Barris on his first game show People Poker
01:55

Tennessee Ernie Ford Show, The

View Show Page
Chuck Barris on his responsibilities on The Tennessee Ernie Ford Show
00:51

Treasure Hunt

View Show Page
Chuck Barris on Treasure Hunt and host Jeff Edwards
04:03
Topics

Censorship / Standards & Practices

View Topic
Chuck Barris on obscene answers on The Newlywed Game
00:42
Chuck Barris on censorship on The Newlywed Game and creating the term "making whoopee"
01:52
Chuck Barris on censorship on The Gong Show and the problematic Popsicle Twins
04:00

Fame & Celebrity

View Topic
Chuck Barris on getting recognized once he hosted The Gong Show
01:44
Chuck Barris on being approached by fans
01:37

We Laughed

View Topic
Chuck Barris on a contestant's answer to the question, "What's the most unusual place you've ever made love?" on The Newlywed Game
00:54
Professions

Game Show Host

View Profession
Chuck Barris on hosting and producing The Gong Show
02:14

Hosts

View Profession
Chuck Barris on hosting The Gong Show and being hated by critics
02:48

Producers

View Profession
Chuck Barris on serving as a producer for The Dating Game
00:51
Chuck Barris on serving as a producer for The Dating Game and for The Newlywed Game
00:41
Chuck Barris on hosting and producing The Gong Show
02:14
Genres

Game Shows

View Genre
Chuck Barris on developing The Dating Game
29:01
Chuck Barris on developing The Newlywed Game
09:30
Chuck Barris on developing The Gong Show
34:25
Chuck Barris on The Newlywed Game
25:53
Chuck Barris on the staff and legacy of The Gong Show
04:25
People

Edward Bleier

View Person Page
Chuck Barris on Edward Bleier's philosophy on production 
00:32

Dick Clark

View Interview Page
Chuck Barris on working for Dick Clark in Philadelphia during the payola scandal
02:54

Milton Delugg

View Interview Page
Chuck Barris on The Gong Show musical director Milton Delugg
01:54

Phyllis Diller

View Interview Page
Chuck Barris on Phyllis Diller as a panelist on The Gong Show
00:20

Jeff Edwards

View Person Page
Chuck Barris on Treasure Hunt and host Jeff Edwards
03:18

Bob Eubanks

View Interview Page
Chuck Barris on Bob Eubanks, host of The Newlywed Game
01:19

Johnny Jacobs

View Person Page
Chuck Barris on announcer Johnny Jacobs
00:48

Jim Lange

View Person Page
Chuck Barris on Jim Lange, host of The Dating Game
01:05
Chuck Barris on the sign off of Jim Lange, host of The Dating Game
00:29

Al Michaels

View Interview Page
Chuck Barris on Al Michaels doing run throughs for The Dating Game
01:01

Charlie O'Donnell

View Person Page
Chuck Barris on announcer Charlie O'Donnell
00:48

Paul Reubens

View Person Page
Chuck Barris on Pee Wee Herman's appearances on The Gong Show
00:55

All Interviews

Q
S