Herb Jellinek

Executive


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In his four-hour Archive interview, Herb Jellinek talks about his 37-year tenure at ABC from 1952-89, where he rose through the ranks from billing clerk in the Accounting Department to Vice President in charge of production for ABC Entertainment and ABC Circle Films. He speaks in detail about ABC executives Leonard H. Goldenson, Elton Rule, Edgar Scherick, Si Siegal, Michael Eisner, Fred Silverman, and Barry Diller. He talks about ABC series ranging from The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet to Soap. Jellinek discusses several noteworthy television movies and miniseries he oversaw at ABC Circle Films, including Love Among the Ruins (in which he fondly recalled working with Katharine Hepburn) and War and Remembrance. He concludes by recalling his association with the Televison Academy where he served as CFO (and later Executive Vice President) from 1991 to 2003. Michael Rosen conducted the interview on March 4, 2005 in Tarzana, CA.

"ABC was our family. When that family changed it became Capital Cities, it wasn't the same anymore. We'd started at nothing and we all built this company up and we had great affection for the company, and we felt strange it being owned by somebody else now. I'm sure Leonard Goldenson felt the same way."

Highlights
Herb Jellinek on the relationship between ABC's Leonard H. Goldenson and Walt Disney
03:42
Herb Jellinek on Moonlighting, starring Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis
02:52
Herb Jellinek on The Day After
05:02
Herb Jellinek on his family fleeing Austria for the United States, and his father being in a concentration camp
07:01
Herb Jellinek on War and Remembrance, starring Robert Mitchum
15:26
Herb Jellinek on the sale of ABC to Capital Cities in 1985, and on his retirement from ABC
05:42
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early life and influences
12:29
On his family fleeing Austria for the United States, and his father being in a concentration camp; on why his family chose to come to the United States, and on settling in the US; on his early impressions arriving in New York, and on finding a job in the city
16:33

Chapter 2

On his decision to come to the United States from Vienna; on going to work as a gopher for ABC and his first experiences seeing television; on the state of ABC radio and television when he arrived, and on what he learned in his early years there
11:25
On the dire financial state of ABC when he first arrived, and how it eventually emerged as a competitor due to Leonard H. Goldenson; on his marriage in 1953; on becoming assistant supervisor of cost accounting at ABC in 1955
16:47

Chapter 3

On the financial specifics of ABC in the 1950s, and the shows on the air there at the time; on The Lawrence Welk Show, and on the different formats shows were shot in; on the relationship between ABC's Leonard H. Goldenson and Walt Disney
09:02
On ABC's coverage of the Senator Joseph McCarthy hearings; on how ABC created the business model for television networks; on his various positions moving up the ranks of ABC
21:17

Chapter 4

On organizing the budgets for ABC; on ITT's attempted takeover of ABC; on working with ABC President Elton H. Rule, and on moving back to New York
11:09
On becoming head of production at ABC Circle Films and on working with Barry Diller; on the vision of ABC Circle Films and on the various programming it produced including Love Among the Ruins starring Katharine Hepburn and Laurence Olivier
13:40

Chapter 5

On ABC Circle Films' production of Eleanor and Franklin and art director Jan Scott; on ABC Circle Films' production of The Jericho Mile; on ABC Circle Films' production of Ike: The War Years, and on The Day After
13:13
On War and Remembrance, starring Robert Mitchum
15:26

Chapter 6

On Jane Seymour in War and Remembrance and other members of the cast and crew; on overseeing production for ABC Motion Pictures, ABC's then-feature film division, and on the feature "Young Doctors in Love"; on various ABC Motion pictures productions
12:14
On Moonlighting, starring Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis; on being vice president in charge of entertainment for ABC in the '80s; on Soap
08:48
On the sale of ABC to Capital Cities in 1985, and on his retirement from ABC; on Leonard H. Goldenson's role at ABC after the sale to Capital Cities
07:37

Chapter 7

On various people with whom he's worked in his career; on coming to work with the Television Academy; on the staff he worked with at the Television Academy
15:04
On ABC getting the Emmys for three years starting in 1993, and on the "wheel" agreement; on adding an Emmy category for commercials, and on the Television Academy's relationship with the National Academy; on the growth of the Television Academy during his tenure, and on the then-future of the Academy
10:01
On his management style and on what he enjoyed about working for ABC
02:57

Chapter 8

On the nature of the competition between the networks during his tenure at ABC; on William S. Paley and Thomas W. Sarnoff; on how he would like to be remembered
06:29
On b-roll footage from his career- during the production of Love Among the Ruins; during the production of War and Remembrance with Dan Curtis; in London at Pinewood Studios with George Cukor; autographed photo of George Cukor; with Laurence Olivier; with Katharine Hepburn; with Katharine Hepburn and George Cukor
03:21
Shows

Day After, The

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Herb Jellinek on The Day After
05:02

Eleanor and Franklin

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Herb Jellinek on ABC Circle Films' Eleanor and Franklin
01:27
Herb Jellinek on ABC Circle Films' production of Eleanor and Franklin and art director Jan Scott
02:57

Emmy Awards, The (Primetime and Daytime)

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Herb Jellinek on ABC getting the The Emmy Awards for three years starting in 1993, and on the "wheel" agreement
02:31

Ike: The War Years

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Herb Jellinek on ABC Circle Films' production of Ike: The War Years
02:20

Lawrence Welk Show, The

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Herb Jellinek on The Lawrence Welk Show, and on the different formats shows were shot in
02:01

Love Among the Ruins

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Herb Jellinek on the vision of ABC Circle Films and on the various programming it produced including Love Among the Ruins starring Katharine Hepburn and Laurence Olivier
08:38

Moonlighting

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Herb Jellinek on Moonlighting, starring Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis
02:52

Soap

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Herb Jellinek on Soap
03:08

War and Remembrance

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Herb Jellinek on War and Remembrance, starring Robert Mitchum
15:26
Herb Jellinek on Jane Seymour in War and Remembrance and other members of the cast and crew
02:29
Topics

Cold War

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Herb Jellinek on The Day After
05:02

Emmy Awards

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Herb Jellinek on ABC getting the The Emmy Awards for three years starting in 1993, and on the "wheel" agreement
02:31
Herb Jellinek on adding an The Emmy Awards category for commercials, and on the Television Academy's relationship with the National Academy
02:40

Historic Events and Social Change

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Herb Jellinek on The Day After
05:02

Hollywood Blacklist

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Herb Jellinek on ABC's coverage of the Senator Joseph McCarthy hearings
04:34

Industry Crossroads

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Herb Jellinek on ABC's coverage of the Senator Joseph McCarthy hearings
04:34

Media Consolidation

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Herb Jellinek on the sale of ABC to Capital Cities in 1985, and on his retirement from ABC
05:42
Herb Jellinek on Leonard H. Goldenson's role at ABC after the sale to Capital Cities
01:52

Television Industry

View Topic
Herb Jellinek on the dire financial state of ABC when he first arrived, and how it eventually emerged as a competitor due to Leonard H. Goldenson
09:59
Herb Jellinek on the financial specifics of ABC in the '50s, and the shows on the air there at the time
03:15
Herb Jellinek on ABC's coverage of the Senator Joseph McCarthy hearings
04:34
Herb Jellinek on how ABC created the business model for television networks
02:29
Herb Jellinek on becoming assistant director of sales service for ABC in 1958
06:22
Herb Jellinek on becoming cost control administer at ABC and on moving to Los Angeles
07:07
Herb Jellinek on organizing the budgets for ABC
03:45
Herb Jellinek on ITT's attempted takeover of ABC
01:26
Herb Jellinek on becoming head of production at ABC Circle Films and on working with Barry Diller
03:27
Herb Jellinek on the vision of ABC Circle Films and on the various programming it produced including Love Among the Ruins starring Katharine Hepburn and Laurence Olivier
08:38
Herb Jellinek on overseeing production for ABC Motion Pictures, ABC's then-feature film division, and on the feature "Young Doctors in Love"
05:25
Herb Jellinek on the ABC Motion Pictures' production "Prizzi's Honor," and on their business model
02:59
Herb Jellinek on various ABC Motion Pictures features including "The Flamingo Kid," "Silkwood," and "Space Camp"
01:17
Herb Jellinek on being vice president in charge of entertainment for ABC in the 1980s
02:46
Herb Jellinek on the sale of ABC to Capital Cities in 1985, and on his retirement from ABC
05:42
Herb Jellinek on Leonard H. Goldenson's role at ABC after the sale to Capital Cities
01:52
Herb Jellinek on the nature of the competition between the networks during his tenure at ABC
02:05

War

View Topic
Herb Jellinek on The Day After
05:02
Professions

Executives

View Profession
Herb Jellinek on his management style and on what he enjoyed about working for ABC
02:57
Genres

Awards Shows

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Herb Jellinek on The Emmy Awards
05:11

Comedy Series

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Herb Jellinek on Soap
02:58

Cop/Detective/Mystery Series

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Herb Jellinek on Moonlighting, starring Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis
02:52

Music Shows & Variety Shows/Specials

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Herb Jellinek on The Lawrence Welk Show, and on the different formats shows were shot in
02:01

TV Movies/Miniseries/Dramatic Specials

View Genre
Herb Jellinek on ABC Circle Films' Eleanor and Franklin
01:27
Herb Jellinek on the vision of ABC Circle Films and on the various programming it produced including Love Among the Ruins starring Katharine Hepburn and Laurence Olivier
08:38
Herb Jellinek on ABC Circle Films' production of Eleanor and Franklin and art director Jan Scott
02:57
Herb Jellinek on ABC Circle Films' production of Ike: The War Years
02:17
Herb Jellinek on The Day After
05:02
Herb Jellinek on War and Remembrance, starring Robert Mitchum
15:26
Herb Jellinek on Jane Seymour in War and Remembrance and other members of the cast and crew
02:29
People

Roone Arledge

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Herb Jellinek on various people with whom he's worked in his career: Roone Arledge
00:21

James T. Aubrey

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Herb Jellinek on various people with whom he's worked in his career: James T. Aubrey
00:16

Barry Diller

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Herb Jellinek on becoming head of production at ABC Circle Films and on working with Barry Diller
03:27

Walt Disney

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Herb Jellinek on the relationship between ABC's Leonard H. Goldenson and Walt Disney
03:43

Michael Eisner

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Herb Jellinek on various people with whom he's worked in his career: Michael Eisner
00:45

Leonard Goldberg

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Herb Jellinek on various people with whom he's worked in his career: Leonard Goldberg
00:32

Leonard H. Goldenson

View Interview Page
Herb Jellinek on the dire financial state of ABC when he first arrived, and how it eventually emerged as a competitor due to Leonard H. Goldenson
09:59
Herb Jellinek on the relationship between ABC's Leonard H. Goldenson and Walt Disney
03:43
Herb Jellinek on Leonard H. Goldenson's role at ABC after the sale to Capital Cities
01:52

Katharine Hepburn

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Herb Jellinek on the vision of ABC Circle Films and on the various programming it produced including Love Among the Ruins starring Katharine Hepburn and Laurence Olivier
08:38

Robert Mitchum

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Herb Jellinek on War and Remembrance, starring Robert Mitchum
15:26

Laurence Olivier

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Herb Jellinek on the vision of ABC Circle Films and on the various programming it produced including Love Among the Ruins starring Katharine Hepburn and Laurence Olivier
08:38

William S. Paley

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Herb Jellinek on William S. Paley
01:58

Elton H. Rule

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Herb Jellinek on working with ABC President Elton H. Rule, and on moving back to New York
05:58

Thomas W. Sarnoff

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Herb Jellinek on Thomas W. Sanroff
01:16

Jan Scott

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Herb Jellinek on ABC Circle Films' production of Eleanor and Franklin and art director Jan Scott
02:57

Jane Seymour

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Herb Jellinek on Jane Seymour in War and Remembrance and other members of the cast and crew
02:28

Cybill Shepherd

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Herb Jellinek on Moonlighting, starring Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis
02:52

Fred Silverman

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Herb Jellinek on various people with whom he's worked in his career: Fred Silverman
01:08

Brandon Stoddard

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Herb Jellinek on various people with whom he's worked in his career: Brandon Stoddard
00:30

Oliver E. Treyz

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Herb Jellinek on various people with whom he's worked in his career: Oliver E. Treyz
00:14

Bruce Willis

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Herb Jellinek on Moonlighting, starring Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis
02:52

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