Garry Shandling

Performer / Writer


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In his two-hour Archive interview, Garry Shandling (1949-2016) discusses his childhood in Arizona and describes his early interest in comedy. He tells of majoring in electrical engineering in college, then switching to the business school and pursuing comedy writing. He speaks of having early success as a comedy scribe, writing three episodes of Sanford and Son and one of Welcome Back Kotter and deciding to pursue stand-up comedy. Shandling recalls writing George Carlin-style monologues and actually meeting Carlin and having him read his material. He describes his first appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, which led to guest-hosting the program. Shandling then details the creation of, the writers and memorable moments on It's Garry Shandling's Show. He also describes the production and cast of The Larry Sanders Show, talks about working with Ricky Gervais and touches on hosting The Emmy Awards. John Dalton conducted the interview on June 9th, 2011 in Los Angeles, CA.

"It isn't about a guy who hosts a talk show, it's the ability to have that world within which you could tell the story of human beings. That show ['The Larry Sanders Show'] really became a lab for a study of human behavior, and we were all somehow meshed at the right point to study it together."

Interviewee(s)
Highlights
Garry Shandling on the writing process on It's Garry Shandling's Show
Garry Shandling on the character "Larry Sanders"
Garry Shandling on Jeffrey Tambor as "Hank" on The Larry Sanders Show
Garry Shandling on writing George Carlin-style monologues and meeting Carlin
Garry Shandling on his first appearance on The Tonight Show
Garry Shandling on Gilda Radner's appearance on It's Garry Shandling's Show
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early years and influences; on growing up in Tucson; on what he wanted to be when he grew up; on his interest in HAM radios as a kid; on his interest in comedy and comedians 
On studying electrical engineering in college and leaving his major; on writing George Carlin-style monologues and having Carlin critique his work; on moving to LA and writing for Sanford and Son and Welcome Back Kotter
On getting into stand-up comedy; on getting into a bad car accident; on being discovered as a stand-up comic; on his act and getting on The Tonight Show; on working with Johnny Carson; on guest hosting The Tonight Show
On his first Showtime special; on his acting teacher, Roy London; on The Garry Shandling Show 25th Anniversary Special; on his interest in hosting The Tonight Show when Joan Rivers left
On It's Garry Shandling Show; on how similar he is to the the TV version of Garry Shandling and Larry Sanders, and on breaking the fourth wall and other television conventions; on the theme song to It's Garry Shandling's Show

Chapter 2

On the writing process and cast of It's Garry Shandling's Show; on Gilda Radner's appearance on It's Garry Shandling's Show
On creating The Larry Sanders Show; on CBS offering him a late night show; on the death of his mentor, Roy London; on the character "Larry Sanders"; on the critics' reaction to the show; on using his personal experiences on The Larry Sanders Show; on the name "Larry Sanders"
On Jeffrey Tambor and Rip Torn on The Larry Sanders Show; on the relationship between "Larry", "Hank" and "Artie"; on Judd Apatow writing for The Larry Sanders Show; on keeping the show fresh; on working some of his legal wranglings with Brad Grey into The Larry Sanders Show; on the finale of the show and the possibility of a reunion
On the DVD extras of The Larry Sanders Show; on appearing on Ricky Gervais Meets; on hosting The Emmys; on then-current projects; on advice to aspiring comedians
Shows

Emmy Awards, The (Primetime and Daytime)

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Garry Shandling on hosting The Emmys

Garry Shandling: Alone in Vegas

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Garry Shandling on his first special for Showtime, Alone in Vegas

It's Garry Shandling's Show.

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Garry Shandling on how his acting coach deconstructed scripts of the show
Garry Shandling on It's Garry Shandling Show and winding up on Showtime, not NBC; on the premise and theme song of the show
Garry Shandling on the writing process and cast on It's Garry Shandling's Show
Garry Shandling on an episode of It's Garry Shandling's Show inspiring The Larry Sanders Show

Larry Sanders Show, The

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Garry Shandling on creating The Larry Sanders Show; on the writers, cast, and finale

Sanford and Son

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Garry Shandling on writing a spec, and eventually three episodes of Sanford and Son
Garry Shandling on the scripts he wrote for Sanford and Son

Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, The

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Garry Shandling on getting discovered as a stand-up comic and getting booked on The Tonight Show
Garry Shandling on his interest in hosting The Tonight Show when Joan Rivers left

Welcome Back, Kotter

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Garry Shandling on writing an episode of Welcome Back Kotter and getting an agent
Topics

Characters & Catchphrases

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Garry Shandling on how similar he is to the the TV version of Garry Shandling and Larry Sanders, and on breaking the fourth wall and other television conventions
Garry Shandling on the character "Larry Sanders"

Comedy

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Garry Shandling on the finale of The Larry Sanders Show

TV Theme Songs

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Garry Shandling on the theme song to It's Garry Shandling's Show
Professions

Actor

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Garry Shandling on his acting teacher, Roy London

Comedian

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Garry Shandling on being fascinated by comedians
Garry Shandling on writing George Carlin-style monologues and meeting Carlin
Genres

Awards Shows

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Garry Shandling on hosting The Emmys

Comedy Series

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Garry Shandling on the scripts he wrote for Sanford and Son
Garry Shandling on It's Garry Shandling Show and winding up on Showtime, not NBC; on the premise and theme song of the show
Garry Shandling on the writing process and cast on It's Garry Shandling's Show
Garry Shandling on creating The Larry Sanders Show; on the writers, cast, and finale

Late Night

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Garry Shandling on getting discovered as a stand-up comic and getting booked on The Tonight Show
People

Judd Apatow

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Garry Shandling on Judd Apatow writing for The Larry Sanders Show
Garry Shandling on Judd Apatow writing for The Larry Sanders Show
Garry Shandling on the finale of The Larry Sanders Show

Ted Bergmann

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Garry Shandling on writing a spec, and eventually three episodes of Sanford and Son

George Carlin

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Garry Shandling on being fascinated by comedians
Garry Shandling on writing George Carlin-style monologues and having Carlin critique his work

Jim Carrey

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Garry Shandling on the finale of The Larry Sanders Show

Johnny Carson

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Garry Shandling on getting discovered as a stand-up comic and getting booked on The Tonight Show
Garry Shandling on getting Johnny Carson on The Garry Shandling Show 25th Anniversary Special
Garry Shandling on his interest in hosting The Tonight Show when Joan Rivers left

Michael Fuchs

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Garry Shandling on his support from HBO on The Larry Sanders Show

Ricky Gervais

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Garry Shandling on appearing on Ricky Gervais Meets

Brad Grey

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Garry Shandling on working some of his legal wranglings with Brad Grey into The Larry Sanders Show

Al Jean

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Garry Shandling on working with Al Jean 

Jay Leno

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Garry Shandling on his interest in hosting The Tonight Show when Joan Rivers left

Don Mischer

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Garry Shandling on hosting The Emmys under producer Don Mischer

Jack Paar

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Garry Shandling on being fascinated by comedians 

Sean Penn

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Garry Shandling on the finale of The Larry Sanders Show

Gilda Radner

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Garry Shandling on Gilda Radner's appearance on It's Garry Shandling's Show

Joan Rivers

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Garry Shandling on his interest in hosting The Tonight Show when Joan Rivers left

Jerry Seinfeld

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Garry Shandling on what Jerry Seinfeld said to him about The Larry Sanders Show

David Spade

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Garry Shandling on David Spade appearing on an episode of The Larry Sanders Show

Jeffrey Tambor

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Garry Shandling on Jeffrey Tambor as "Hank" on The Larry Sanders Show

Peter Tolan

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Garry Shandling on Peter Tolan writing for The Larry Sanders Show
Garry Shandling on the finale of The Larry Sanders Show

Rip Torn

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Garry Shandling on Rip Torn on The Larry Sanders Show

Alan Zweibel

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Garry Shandling on the writing process on It's Garry Shandling's Show
Garry Shandling on the writing process on It's Garry Shandling's Show
Garry Shandling on Gilda Radner's appearance on It's Garry Shandling's Show

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