Gavin MacLeod

Actor


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

Tab

About
About this interview

In his three-hour Archive interview, Gavin MacLeod (1931-2021) talks about changing his name from Allan See to Gavin MacLeod and his early years as an actor in theater, movies and as a guest on such television series as Peter Gunn and The Untouchables. He discusses his appearance as a regular on McHale's Navy and how despite playing the character of "Happy Haines," it was an unhappy period in his life where he experienced a bout with alcoholism. He speaks earnestly about inspiring others to overcome such obstacles and describes his own career resurgence after appearing in Robert Wise's "The Sand Pebbles" and as a notable recurring character on Hawaii Five-O. MacLeod then details the roles on the two series for which he is best remembered and most beloved, playing "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show and "Captain Merrill Stubing" on The Love Boat. Regardng both series, he talks about how he was cast, his thoughts on the other regulars and the series creators and reminisces about memorable series episodes. He also mentions his recent talk show series Back on Course: A Ministry for Marriages, a series on the Trinity Broadcasting Network that he co-hosted with his wife Patti. Karen Herman conducted the interview on January 3, 2003 in Santa Monica, CA.

"You think about this guy that tried to commit suicide during McHale's Navy and is now with his wife trying to save peoples' lives. What a change, huh?"      

People Talking About ...
Highlights
Gavin MacLeod on "The Last Show," the final episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on The Mary Tyler Moore Show episodes "Murray in Love" and "Mary's Three Husbands"
Gavin MacLeod on being cast by Ethel Winant, Allan Burns, and James L. Brooks to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on his Love Boat character "Captain Merrill Stubing," and on classic stars like Lana Turner and Mary Martin guest-starring
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on The Dick Van Dyke Show, and on working with Sheldon Leonard and Carl Reiner
Gavin MacLeod on how The Love Boat came about for him, and on producer Aaron Spelling allowing him flexibility to do plays
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early life and influences; on what he was looking for when he decided to be an actor, and his family's reaction; on his earliest work on stage
On the first Broadway play he appeared in "A Hat Full of Rain"; on moving to Los Angeles, and starting to work in feature films
On the first time he saw television, and on early shows he watched including Texaco Star Theater with Milton Berle; on his first television appearance in a religious program called Lamp Unto My Feet; on his early representation as an actor

Chapter 2

On the decision to change his name; on being cast by Blake Edwards for a guest-starring role on Peter Gunn; on being cast by Blake Edwards in the feature film "Operation Petticoat," and on encountering Cary Grant again several years later
On guest-starring on The Untouchables with Robert Stack; on guest-starring on Perry Mason with Raymond Burr; on playing multiple guest-starring roles and the same series, and on how casts regard a guest-star
On guest-starring on Dr. Kildare; on guest-starring on The Dick Van Dyke Show, and on working with Sheldon Leonard and Carl Reiner

Chapter 3

On being cast as "Joseph 'Happy' Haines" on McHale's Navy; on guest-starring on My Favorite Martian ; on appearing in the Robert Wise directed feature film "The Sand Pebbles"
On guest-starring on Hogan's Heroes, and on working with Bob Crane on the show; on guest-starring on Ben Casey, and on Cloris Leachman; on guest-starring on Hawaii Five-O
On being cast by Ethel Winant, Allan Burns, and James L. Brooks to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show; on the pilot for The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and on the first few episodes; on his Mary Tyler Moore Show character "Murray Slaughter"

Chapter 4

On specific episodes of The Mary Tyler Moore Show; on how he prepared to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and on his relationships on the show; on how his character "Murray Slaughter" changed over the course of The Mary Tyler Moore Show
On Mary Tyler Moore Show director Jay Sandrich; on Edward Asner as "Lou Grant," and on Betty White as "Sue Ann Nivens" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show; on Ted Knight as "Ted Baxter," and on Mary Tyler Moore as "Mary Richards" on the show
On Mary Tyler Moore Show producer Grant Tinker; on Mary Tyler Moore Show creators James L. Brooks and Allan Burns; on "The Last Show," the final episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Chapter 5

On the legacy of The Mary Tyler Moore Show; on how The Love Boat came about for him, and on producer Aaron Spelling allowing him flexibility to do plays; on the elder guest-stars of The Love Boat
On Marion Ross playing the love interest of "Captain Merrill Stubing" on The Love Boat; on his Love Boat character "Captain Merrill Stubing," and on classic stars like Lana Turner and Mary Martin guest-starring; on Bernie Kopell as "Adam 'Doc' Bricker" on The Love Boat
On Fred Grandy as Ship's Purser "Gopher Smith"; on Ted Lange as Bartender "Isaac Washington" on The Love Boat; on Lauren Tewes as Cruise Director "Julie McCoy" on The Love Boat

Chapter 6

On Lauren Tewes leaving The Love Boat; on Jill Whelan as "Vicki Stubing" on The Love Boat; on the producers of The Love Boat
On his favorite episodes of The Love Boat to work on; on the end of The Love Boat; on The Love Boat: The Next Wave
On hosting a religious program with his wife; on his drive to continue working; on advice to an aspiring actor
Shows

Ben Casey

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Ben Casey, and on Cloris Leachman

Dick Van Dyke Show, The

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on The Dick Van Dyke Show, and on working with Sheldon Leonard and Carl Reiner

Dr. Kildare

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Dr. Kildare

Hawaii Five-O

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Hawaii Five-O as "Big Chicken"

Hogan's Heroes

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Hogan's Heroes, and on working with Bob Crane on the show

Lamp Unto My Feet

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on his first television appearance in a religious program called Lamp Unto My Feet

Love Boat, The

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on how The Love Boat came about for him, and on producer Aaron Spelling allowing him flexibility to do plays
Gavin MacLeod on the elder guest-stars of The Love Boat
Gavin MacLeod on Marion Ross playing the love interest of "Captain Merrill Stubing" on The Love Boat
Gavin MacLeod on his Love Boat character Captain "Merrill Stubing," and on classic stars like Lana Turner and Mary Martin guest-starring
Gavin MacLeod on Bernie Kopell as "Adam 'Doc' Bricker" on The Love Boat
Gavin MacLeod on Fred Grandy as Ship's Purser "Gopher Smith"
Gavin MacLeod on Ted Lange as Bartender "Isaac Washington" on The Love Boat
Gavin MacLeod on Lauren Tewes as Cruise Director "Julie McCoy" on The Love Boat
Gavin MacLeod on Lauren Tewes leaving The Love Boat
Gavin MacLeod on Jill Whelan as "Vicki Stubing" on The Love Boat
Gavin MacLeod on working with Love Boat producer Aaron Spelling
Gavin MacLeod on working with Love Boat producers Douglas S. Cramer and Henry Coleman
Gavin MacLeod on his favorite episodes of The Love Boat to work on
Gavin MacLeod on the end of The Love Boat

Love Boat, The: The Next Wave

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on The Love Boat: The Next Wave

Mary Tyler Moore Show, The

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on being cast by Ethel Winant, Allan Burns, and James L. Brooks to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on the pilot for The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and on the first few episodes
Gavin MacLeod on his Mary Tyler Moore Show character "Murray Slaughter"
Gavin MacLeod on The Mary Tyler Moore Show episodes "Murray in Love" and "Mary's Three Husbands"
Gavin MacLeod on specific episodes of The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on how he prepared to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and on his relationships on the show
Gavin MacLeod on how his character "Murray Slaughter" changed over the course of The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on "The Last Show," the final episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on Edward Asner as "Lou Grant" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on Betty White as "Sue Ann Nivens" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on Ted Knight as "Ted Baxter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on Mary Tyler Moore as "Mary Richards" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on Mary Tyler Moore Show producer Grant Tinker
Gavin MacLeod on Mary Tyler Moore Show creators James L. Brooks and Allan Burns
Gavin MacLeod on "The Last Show," the final episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on the legacy of The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Mary Tyler Moore Show, The: "The Last Show"

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on "The Last Show," the final episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show

McHale's Navy

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on being cast as "Joseph 'Happy' Haines" on McHale's Navy
Gavin MacLeod on his McHale's Navy character "Joseph 'Happy' Haines"

My Favorite Martian

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on My Favorite Martian

Perry Mason

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Perry Mason with Raymond Burr

Peter Gunn

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on being cast by Blake Edwards for a guest-starring role on Peter Gunn

Texaco Star Theater

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on the first time he saw television, and on early shows he watched including Texaco Star Theater with Milton Berle

Untouchables, The

View Show Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on The Untouchables with Robert Stack
Topics

Advice

View Topic
Gavin MacLeod on advice to an aspiring actor

Characters & Catchphrases

View Topic
Gavin MacLeod on his Mary Tyler Moore Show character "Murray Slaughter"
Gavin MacLeod on his Love Boat character "Captain Merrill Stubing"

Classic TV series episodes

View Topic
Gavin MacLeod on "The Last Show," the final episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Comedy

View Topic
Gavin MacLeod on "The Last Show," the final episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show

First Big Break

View Topic
Gavin McLeod on the first Broadway play he appeared in "A Hat Full of Rain"

Memorable Moments on Television

View Topic
Gavin MacLeod on "The Last Show," the final episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Pivotal Career Moments

View Topic
Gavin McLeod on the first Broadway play he appeared in "A Hat Full of Rain"

Pop Culture

View Topic
Gavin MacLeod on his Mary Tyler Moore Show character "Murray Slaughter"
Gavin MacLeod on "The Last Show," the final episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on his Love Boat character "Captain Merrill Stubing"

TV's Golden Age (1940s & '50s)

View Topic
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on The Untouchables with Robert Stack

Television Industry

View Topic
Gavin MacLeod on his early representation as an actor
Gavin MacLeod on advice to an aspiring actor

We Cried

View Topic
Gavin MacLeod on "The Last Show," the final episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Professions

Actor

View Profession
Gavin MacLeod on his early representation as an actor
Gavin MacLeod on playing multiple guest-starring roles and the same series, and on how casts regard a guest-star
Gavin MacLeod on being cast to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show and on following his instincts at the audition
Gavin MacLeod on how he prepared to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and on his relationships on the show
Gavin MacLeod on advice to an aspiring actor

Performers

View Profession
Gavin MacLeod on his early representation as an actor
Gavin MacLeod on playing multiple guest-starring roles and the same series, and on how casts regard a guest-star
Gavin MacLeod on being cast to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show and on following his instincts at the audition
Gavin MacLeod on how he prepared to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and on his relationships on the show
Gavin MacLeod on advice to an aspiring actor
Genres

Comedy Series

View Genre
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on The Dick Van Dyke Show, and on working with Sheldon Leonard and Carl Reiner
Gavin MacLeod on playing "Joseph 'Happy' Haines" on McHale's Navy
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on My Favorite Martian
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Hogan's Heroes, and on working with Bob Crane on the show
Gavin MacLeod on playing "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on co-starring as "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on playing "Captain Merrill Stubing" on The Love Boat
Gavin MacLeod on starring on The Love Boat

Cop/Detective/Mystery Series

View Genre
Gavin MacLeod on being cast by Blake Edwards for a guest-starring role on Peter Gunn
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on The Untouchables with Robert Stack
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Hawaii Five-O

Legal Dramas

View Genre
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Perry Mason with Raymond Burr

Medical Dramas

View Genre
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Dr. Kildare
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Ben Casey, and on Cloris Leachman

Music Shows & Variety Shows/Specials

View Genre
Gavin MacLeod on the first time he saw television, and on early shows he watched including Texaco Star Theater with Milton Berle

Religious Programming

View Genre
Gavin MacLeod on hosting a religious program with his wife

Service Shows

View Genre
Gavin MacLeod on his first television appearance in a religious program called Lamp Unto My Feet
People

Edward Asner

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on Edward Asner as "Lou Grant" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show

James L. Brooks

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on being cast by Ethel Winant, Allan Burns, and James L. Brooks to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on Mary Tyler Moore Show creators James L. Brooks and Allan Burns

Allan Burns

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on being cast by Ethel Winant, Allan Burns, and James L. Brooks to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Gavin MacLeod on Mary Tyler Moore Show creators James L. Brooks and Allan Burns

Raymond Burr

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Perry Mason with Raymond Burr

Douglas S. Cramer

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on working with Love Boat producers Douglas S. Cramer and Henry Coleman

Dick Van Dyke

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on The Dick Van Dyke Show, and on working with Sheldon Leonard and Carl Reiner

Blake Edwards

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on being cast by Blake Edwards for a guest-starring role on Peter Gunn
Gavin MacLeod on being cast by Blake Edwards in the feature film "Operation Petticoat," and on encountering Cary Grant again several years later

Fred Grandy

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on Fred Grandy as Ship's Purser "Gopher Smith"

Cary Grant

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on being cast by Blake Edwards in the feature film "Operation Petticoat," and on encountering Cary Grant again several years later

Ted Knight

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on Ted Knight as "Ted Baxter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Bernie Kopell

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on Bernie Kopell as "Adam 'Doc' Bricker" on The Love Boat

Ted Lange

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on Ted Lange as Bartender "Isaac Washington" on The Love Boat

Cloris Leachman

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on Ben Casey, and on Cloris Leachman

Sheldon Leonard

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on The Dick Van Dyke Show, and on working with Sheldon Leonard and Carl Reiner

Mary Martin

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on his Love Boat character "Captain Merrill Stubing," and on classic stars like Lana Turner and Mary Martin guest-starring

Mary Tyler Moore

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on Mary Tyler Moore as "Mary Richards" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Carl Reiner

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on The Dick Van Dyke Show, and on working with Sheldon Leonard and Carl Reiner

Jay Sandrich

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on Mary Tyler Moore Show director Jay Sandrich

Aaron Spelling

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on working with Love Boat producer Aaron Spelling

Robert Stack

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on guest-starring on The Untouchables with Robert Stack

Lauren Tewes

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on Lauren Tewes as Cruise Director "Julie McCoy" on The Love Boat
Gavin MacLeod on Lauren Tewes leaving The Love Boat after season seven

Grant Tinker

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on Grant Tinker

Lana Turner

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on his Love Boat character "Captain Merrill Stubing," and on classic stars like Lana Turner and Mary Martin guest-starring

Jill Whelan

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on Jill Whelan as "Vicki Stubing" on The Love Boat

Betty White

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on Betty White as "Sue Ann Nivens" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Ethel Winant

View Interview Page
Gavin MacLeod on being cast by Ethel Winant, Allan Burns, and James L. Brooks to play "Murray Slaughter" on The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Robert Wise

View Person Page
Gavin MacLeod on appearing in the Robert Wise directed feature film "The Sand Pebbles"

All Interviews

S