Sam Bobrick

Writer


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In his two-and-a-half hour interview, Sam Bobrick talks about his early years, and his first job, working in the ABC mailroom, which eventually led to writing gags for The Ray Bolger Show. He describes his first official television writing jobs on Make Me Laugh and Captain Kangaroo, and his music career, which included writing songs for Elvis Presley and "Mad Magazine." Bobrick recounts working on several sitcoms including The Andy Griffith Show, The Flintstones, Gomer Pyle - U.S.M.C., and for Allan Sherman’s special Funnyland. He recalls in depth writing for The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, including his relationship with Tom and Dick Smothers, the controversial nature of the show, and meeting his writing partner, Ron Clark. He discusses writing for several other shows including Get Smart, The Kraft Music Hall, and The Tim Conway Comedy Hour, as well as various pilots and feature films. He concludes by speaking of his involvement in the Writers Guild, career achievements, and how he’d like to be remembered. Amy Harrington conducted the interview in a joint venture with the Writers Guild Foundation on December 12, 2016 in Los Angeles, CA.

"If you want to be a writer, there’s nothing that can stop you. And if it’s not what you want to do, you’ll know soon enough."

Highlights
Sam Bobrick on the process of writing for The Andy Griffith Show, which included pitching ideas to producer Sheldon Leonard
02:19
Sam Bobrick on a typical workweek on The Kraft Music Hall, and on the guest stars of the show, including Groucho Marx
06:00
Sam Bobrick on his membership in the Writers Guild
01:35
Sam Bobrick on the controversies involved with The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour and on his writing partner on that show, Ron Clark
04:43
Sam Bobrick on what he likes about writing, and on writing plays
03:15
Sam Bobrick on writing songs for "Mad Magazine"
02:00
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early life and influences; on how he got into writing at a young age
13:39
On getting a job in the ABC mailroom, and on starting to write jokes for The Ray Bolger Show; on his first official writing job for Make Me Laugh , hosted by Robert Q. Lewis; on writing for Captain Kangaroo; on learning how to write for television and on writing a song for Elvis Presley
12:03
On writing songs for "Mad Magazine"; on writing for The Flintstones, and on how he came to write for The Andy Griffith Show with Bill Persky; on the process of writing for The Andy Griffith Show, which included pitching ideas to producer Sheldon Leonard; on writing for Gomer Pyle - U.S.M.C.
18:45
On writing for the Allan Sherman special Funnyland; on working on The Bill Dana Show and Make Me Laugh; on writing for The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
11:20

Chapter 2

On working with the writing staff of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour; on the controversies involved with The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour and on his writing partner on that show, Ron Clark; on the writers of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
10:15
On the performers on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, including Pat Paulsen; on working with Tom and Dick Smothers on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour; on the legacy of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, and on his decision to leave the show to write for The Kraft Music Hall
17:36
On a typical work week on The Kraft Music Hall, and on the guest stars of the show including Groucho Marx; on writing for Get Smart; on writing for The Tim Conway Comedy Hour, and on working with Tim Conway
12:30
On writing and producing The New Dick Van Dyke Show, and The Paul Lynde Show; on writing the pilot Diana with Diana Rigg for producer Leonard Stern; on writing various unsold pilots and on his writing process for pilots
24:34

Chapter 3

On the craft of writing and his process; on his membership in the Writers Guild; on what he likes about writing, and on writing plays
14:26
On his career in feature films; on how the television industry has changed since he started; on the first time he saw television
06:52
On his mentors; on career achievements and regrets; on advice to an aspiring writer and on how he'd like to be remembered
04:11
Shows

Andy Griffith Show, The

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Sam Bobrick on the process of writing for The Andy Griffith Show, which included pitching ideas to producer Sheldon Leonard
01:48
Sam Bobrick on his first script for The Andy Griffith Show: "The Shoplifters," and on working for Joseph Barbera
02:16
Sam Bobrick on writing for Andy Griffith and Don Knotts on The Andy Griffith Show and on writing for Gomer Pyle - USMC
01:59
Sam Bobrick on his favorite episodes of The Andy Griffith Show
01:58
Sam Bobrick on the continued popularity of The Andy Griffith Show
03:04

Bill Dana Show, The

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Sam Bobrick on working on The Bill Dana Show
00:47

Captain Kangaroo

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Sam Bobrick on writing for Captain Kangaroo
02:04

Flintstones, The

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Sam Bobrick on writing for The Flintstones, and on how he came to write for The Andy Griffith Show with Bill Persky
03:43

Get Smart

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Sam Bobrick on writing for Get Smart
01:24

Gomer Pyle - USMC

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Sam Bobrick on writing for Andy Griffith and Don Knotts on The Andy Griffith Show and on writing for Gomer Pyle - USMC
01:59

Hey Landlord!

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Sam Bobrick on working with Garry Marshall on Hey Landlord!
01:56

Kraft Music Hall, The

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Sam Bobrick on the legacy of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, and on his decision to leave the show to write for The Kraft Music Hall
06:00
Sam Bobrick on a typical workweek on The Kraft Music Hall, and on the guest stars of the show, including Groucho Marx
05:59

Make Me Laugh

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Sam Bobrick on his first official writing job for Make Me Laugh hosted by Robert Q. Lewis, and on writing for Captain Kangaroo
04:49

New Dick Van Dyke Show, The

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Sam Bobrick on writing and producing The New Dick Van Dyke Show
04:10

Paul Lynde Show, The

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Sam Bobrick on writing The Paul Lynde Show
02:47

Ray Bolger Show, The

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Sam Bobrick on getting a job in the ABC mailroom, and on starting to write jokes for The Ray Bolger Show
03:56

Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, The

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Sam Bobrick on writing for The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
03:03
Sam Bobrick on working with the writing staff of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
02:40
Sam Bobrick on the controversies involved with The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, and on his writing partner, Ron Clark
04:42
Sam Bobrick on the writers of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
02:51
Sam Bobrick on the performers on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, including Pat Paulsen
02:38
Sam Bobrick on working with Tom and Dick Smothers on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
02:52
Sam Bobrick on the guest stars of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour and on network censorship on the show
03:35
Sam Bobrick on how comedy writing has changed since the days of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
02:28
Sam Bobrick on the legacy of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, and on his decision to leave the show to write for The Kraft Music Hall
06:00

Tim Conway Comedy Hour, The

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Sam Bobrick on writing for The Tim Conway Comedy Hour, and on working with Tim Conway
05:04
Topics

Advice

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Sam Bobrick on advice to an aspiring writer and on how he'd like to be remembered
00:54

Creative Influences and Inspiration

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Sam Bobrick on his mentors
00:50

Pivotal Career Moments

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Sam Bobrick on his mentors
00:50

Television Industry

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Sam Bobrick on how the television industry has changed since he started
02:19
Sam Bobrick on career achievements and regrets
02:25
Sam Bobrick on advice to an aspiring writer and on how he'd like to be remembered
00:54
Professions

Writers

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Sam Bobrick on his writing partner Bill Idelson, and on the advantages of having a writing partner
01:51
Sam Bobrick on his writing process for pilots
05:39
Sam Bobrick on the craft of writing and his process
09:34
Sam Bobrick on what he likes about writing, and on writing plays
03:15
Sam Bobrick on advice to an aspiring writer and on how he'd like to be remembered
00:54
Genres

Children's Programming

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Sam Bobrick on his first official writing job for Make Me Laugh, hosted by Robert Q. Lewis, and on writing for Captain Kangaroo
04:48

Comedy Series

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Sam Bobrick on writing for The Andy Griffith Show
11:40
Sam Bobrick on working on The Bill Dana Show
00:47
Sam Bobrick on working with Garry Marshall on Hey Landlord
01:56
Sam Bobrick on writing the pilot Diana, with Diana Rigg for producer Leonard Stern
05:07
Sam Bobrick on writing various unsold pilots
04:44
Sam Bobrick on writing for The Tim Conway Comedy Hour, and on working with Tim Conway
05:04
Sam Bobrick on writing and producing The New Dick Van Dyke Show
04:10
Sam Bobrick on writing The Paul Lynde Show
02:47

Game Shows

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Sam Bobrick on his first official writing job for Make Me Laugh, hosted by Robert Q. Lewis, and on writing for Captain Kangaroo
04:49

Music Shows & Variety Shows/Specials

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Sam Bobrick on getting a job in the ABC mailroom, and on starting to write jokes for The Ray Bolger Show
03:56
Sam Bobrick on writing for The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
03:03
Sam Bobrick on writing for The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
27:53
Sam Bobrick on writing for The Kraft Music Hall
12:00
People

Joseph Barbera

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Sam Bobrick on his first script for The Andy Griffith Show: "The Shoplifters," and on working for Joseph Barbera
02:16

Tim Conway

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Sam Bobrick on writing for The Tim Conway Comedy Hour, and on working with Tim Conway
05:04

Bill Dana

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Sam Bobrick on working on The Bill Dana Show
00:47

Andy Griffith

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Sam Bobrick on the process of writing for The Andy Griffith Show, which included pitching to producer Sheldon Leonard
01:48
Sam Bobrick on writing for Andy Griffith and Don Knotts on The Andy Griffith Show
01:59

Don Knotts

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Sam Bobrick on writing for Andy Griffith and Don Knotts on The Andy Griffith Show
01:59

Sheldon Leonard

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Sam Bobrick on the process of writing for The Andy Griffith Show, which included pitching to producer Sheldon Leonard
01:48

Robert Q. Lewis

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Sam Bobrick on his first official writing job for Make Me Laugh, hosted by Robert Q. Lewis
04:49

Garry Marshall

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Sam Bobrick on working with Garry Marshall on Hey Landlord
01:56

Groucho Marx

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Sam Bobrick on a typical workweek on The Kraft Music Hall, and on the guest stars of the show, including Groucho Marx
05:13

Pat Paulsen

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Sam Bobrick on the performers on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, including Pat Paulsen
02:38

Bill Persky

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Sam Bobrick on writing for The Flintstones, and on how he came to write for The Andy Griffith Show with Bill Persky
03:43

Elvis Presley

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Sam Bobrick on writing a song for Elvis Presley
02:29

Allan Sherman

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Sam Bobrick on writing for the Allan Sherman special Funnyland
05:27

Dick Smothers

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Sam Bobrick on working with Tom and Dick Smothers on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
02:52

Tom Smothers

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Sam Bobrick on working with Tom and Dick Smothers on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
02:51

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