Joshua Brand

Writer/Show Creator


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In his four-hour interview, Joshua Brand talks about his early life and the first television shows he wrote for, including The White Shadow and Operation Petticoat. He describes creating St. Elsewhere with his writing partner, John Falsey, and leaving the show after the first year. He recounts working with Steven Spielberg on several episodes of Amazing Stories, and creating the acclaimed series A Year in the Life, starring Richard Kiley. He discusses creating and developing Northern Exposure, and several aspects of that show including its popularity, star Rob Morrow leaving the show, and David Chase eventually taking over the show when Brand left as show runner. Brand speaks of creating the acclaimed series I’ll Fly Away, and his then-most recent success, The Americans. He sums up by detailing his writing process, and his having won with John Falsey the Writers Guild’s Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award. Jenni Matz conducted the interview in a joint venture with the Writers Guild Foundation on January 18, 2017 in New York, NY.

"As a writer, I found that there’s nothing in my life that I like more than taking an idea and turning it from an abstraction to something that is concrete."

People Talking About ...
Highlights
Joshua Brand on being hired by John Falsey to write for The White Shadow
Joshua Brand on the pilot for St. Elsewhere, and on leaving the show after one year
Joshua Brand on how he supported himself while he was trying to be writer
Joshua Brand on developing and writing Amazing Stories for executive producer Steven Spielberg
Joshua Brand on the development of Northern Exposure as the series progressed, on the show's popularity, and on being involved in advertising via CAA for Coca-Cola
Joshua Brand on dealing with writers block and on the general process of writing
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early life and influences; on television shows he watched growing up; on books he read while growing up, and on starting his writing career
On getting into writing for television; on how he supported himself while he was trying to be writer
On being hired to write for The White Shadow; on writing for Operation Petticoat; on his experience as a grip
On being hired by John Falsey to write for The White Shadow; on dividing responsibilities for writing The White Shadow, and on the process of writing episodes
On how St. Elsewhere came about, partially inspired by Hill Street Blues; on the pilot for St. Elsewhere, and on leaving the show after one year

Chapter 2

On summing up The White Shadow, and working with Thomas Carter on the show; on doing research for St. Elsewhere, on the pilot for the show, and on working with Bruce Paltrow
On developing and writing Amazing Stories for executive producer Steven Spielberg; on being fired from Amazing Stories after one season, and what he contributed to the development of St. Elsewhere
On his having left St. Elsewhere after one year; on creating and writing A Year in the Life, starring Richard Kiley, and on working with director Thomas Carter on that show
On developing and writing Northern Exposure; on writing the pilot for Northern Exposure, and on his writing process with writing partner John Falsey
On the development of Northern Exposure as the series progressed, on the show's popularity, and on being involved in advertising via CAA for Coca-Cola; on his freedom in writing Northern Exposure , and leaving the show after five years

Chapter 3

On casting Northern Exposure ; on creating I'll Fly Away and Going to Extremes, and on juggling the shows with Northern Exposure
On leaving Northern Exposure and David Chase taking over, and on ending his partnership with John Falsey; on his great success in the television industry and on dealing with censorship issues
On Rob Morrow's contract dispute during Northern Exposure, and on the show after he left; on the music of Northern Exposure; on the process of how a script came together for Northern Exposure and for The Americans, and how his writers rooms work in general
On his personal writing process; on dealing with writers block and on the general process of writing; on what he loves about writing
On advice to an aspiring television writer, and on dealing with studio politics; on his greatest professional achievements, and on doing research for Northern Exposure; on getting the Writers Guild Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award for Television Writing Achievement with John Falsey, and on his feelings about the Writers Guild
On the "new" Golden Age of Television, and on the politics of the television industry; on how he'd like to be remembered; on then-current projects, on selecting projects, and on The Americans
Shows

Amazing Stories

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Joshua Brand on developing and writing Amazing Stories for executive producer Steven Spielberg
Joshua Brand on being fired from Amazing Stories after one season, and what he contributed to the development of St. Elsewhere

Americans, The

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Joshua Brand on his overall feelings on The Americans

Going to Extremes

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Joshua Brand on creating I'll Fly Away and Going to Extremes

Hill Street Blues

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Joshua Brand on how St. Elsewhere came about, partially inspired by Hill Street Blues

I'll Fly Away

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Joshua Brand on creating I'll Fly Away and Going to Extremes

Northern Exposure

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Joshua Brand on developing and writing Northern Exposure
Joshua Brand on writing the pilot for Northern Exposure, and on his writing process with writing partner John Falsey
Joshua Brand on the development of Northern Exposure as the series progressed, on the show's popularity, and on being involved in advertising via CAA for Coca-Cola
Joshua Brand on his freedom in writing Northern Exposure, and leaving the show after five years
Joshua Brand on casting Northern Exposure
Joshua Brand on leaving Northern Exposure and David Chase taking over, and on ending his partnership with John Falsey
Joshua Brand on Rob Morrow leaving Northern Exposure, and on the show after he left
Joshua Brand on the music of Northern Exposure
Joshua Brand on the process of how a script came together for Northern Exposure and for The Americans, and how his writers rooms work in general

Operation Petticoat

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Joshua Brand on writing for Operation Petticoat

St. Elsewhere

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Joshua Brand on how St. Elsewhere came about, partially inspired by Hill Street Blues
Joshua Brand on the pilot for St. Elsewhere, and on leaving the show after one year
Joshua Brand on doing research for St. Elsewhere, on the pilot for the show, and on working with Bruce Paltrow
Joshua Brand on being fired from Amazing Stories after one season, and what he contributed to the development of St. Elsewhere
Joshua Brand on his having left St. Elsewhere after one year

White Shadow, The

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Joshua Brand on being hired to write for The White Shadow
Joshua Brand on being hired by John Falsey to write for The White Shadow
Joshua Brand on dividing responsibilities for writing The White Shadow, and on the process of writing episodes
Joshua Brand on summing up The White Shadow, and working with Thomas Carter on the show

Year in the Life, A

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Joshua Brand on creating and writing A Year in the Life starring Richard Kiley, and on working with director Thomas Carter on that show
Topics

Television Industry

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Joshua Brand on his great success in the television industry
Joshua Brand on dealing with censorship issues
Professions

Show Creators

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Joshua Brand on writing the pilot for Northern Exposure, and on his writing process with writing partner John Falsey
Joshua Brand on his writing process
Joshua Brand on dealing with writers block and on the general process of writing
Joshua Brand on what he loves about writing
Joshua Brand on advice to an aspiring television writer, and on dealing with studio politics

Writers

View Profession
Joshua Brand on writing the pilot for Northern Exposure, and on his writing process with writing partner John Falsey
Joshua Brand on his writing process
Joshua Brand on dealing with writers block and on the general process of writing
Joshua Brand on what he loves about writing
Joshua Brand on advice to an aspiring television writer, and on dealing with studio politics
Joshua Brand on getting the Writers Guild Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award for Television Writing Achievement with John Falsey, and on his feelings about the Writers Guild
Genres

Classic Anthology Series

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Joshua Brand on developing and writing Amazing Stories for executive producer Steven Spielberg

Comedy Series

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Joshua Brand on writing for Operation Petticoat

Drama Series

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Joshua Brand on writing for The White Shadow
Joshua Brand on summing up The White Shadow
Joshua Brand on creating and writing A Year in the Life starring Richard Kiley
Joshua Brand on developing and writing Northern Exposure
Joshua Brand on casting Northern Exposure
Joshua Brand on creating and writing I'll Fly Away, Going to Extremes, and Northern Exposure
Joshua Brand on his overall feelings on The Americans

Medical Dramas

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Joshua Brand on creating and writing St. Elsewhere
Joshua Brand on working on St. Elsewhere
People

Thomas Carter

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Joshua Brand on summing up The White Shadow, and working with Thomas Carter on the show
Joshua Brand on creating and writing A Year in the Life starring Richard Kiley, and on working with director Thomas Carter on that show

David Chase

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Joshua Brand on Rob Morrow leaving Northern Exposure, and on the show being run by David Chase after Brand left

Paddy Chayefsky

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Joshua Brand on getting the Writers Guild Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award for Television Writing Achievement with John Falsey, and on his feelings about the Writers Guild

John Falsey

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Joshua Brand on being hired by John Falsey to write for The White Shadow
Joshua Brand on writing the pilot for Northern Exposure, and on his writing process with writing partner John Falsey
Joshua Brand on leaving Northern Exposure and David Chase taking over, and on ending his partnership with John Falsey

Richard Kiley

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Joshua Brand on creating and writing A Year in the Life starring Richard Kiley, and on working with director Thomas Carter on that show

Rob Morrow

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Joshua Brand on Rob Morrow leaving Northern Exposure, and on the show being run by David Chase after Brand left

Bruce Paltrow

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Joshua Brand on doing research for St. Elsewhere, on the pilot for the show, and on working with Bruce Paltrow

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