Tom Bosley

Actor


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

Tab

About
About this interview

In his three-and-a-half-hour Archive interview, Tom Bosley (1927-2010) recalls his earliest days as an actor, working on NBC's Hallmark Hall of Fame productions of "Born Yesterday," "The Good Fairy," "Alice in Wonderland" and "Arsenic and Old Lace," and also of working on the popular Broadway production of "Fiorello!," for which he won a Tony award. Next, he talks about many of his early television credits, including those for That Was The Week That Was, an unsold pilot for Marty, the pilot episode of Marcus Welby, M.D. and the famed episode of Rod Serling's Night Gallery starring Joan Crawford and directed by Steven Spielberg. Mr. Bosley also discusses his work on the series The Debbie Reynolds Show and The Dean Martin Show. On the topic of his most well-known credit, Mr. Bosley speaks at length about his role as Howard Cunningham on the long-running sitcom Happy Days, and fondly remembers his fellow cast members and creator Garry Marshall. Finally, he recalls working on the mystery drama Murder, She Wrote with star Angela Lansbury, and then on his own series The Father Dowling Mysteries opposite Tracy Nelson. Michael Rosen conducted the interview on September 12, 2000 in Beverly Hills, CA.

"'Happy Days' was about a family...although the show was shot in the 70s, it was about a family in the 50s. I realized that kids were watching their parents grow up and the parents were watching themselves grow up. That was the key to the success of our show."

Highlights
Tom Bosley on why Happy Days was so popular
01:03
Tom Bosley on his Murder, She Wrote character "Sheriff Amos Tupper"
00:40
Tom Bosley on his casting on Happy Days and how quickly the first episodes were shot
02:54
Tom Bosley on how the Father Dowling Mysteries came about
Tom Bosley on his role as Sidney Resnick in the NBC pilot for Night Gallery, a supernatural anthology series on NBC written by Rod Serling and directed by Steven Speilberg
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his childhood and early influences; attending drama school

Chapter 2

On studying at the Actor's Studio in New York in the 1950s; early live television appearances on Hallmark Hall of Fame; winning a Tony award for Fiorello on Broadway; appears in The Right Man on CBS; appears on Car 54 Where Are You?, That Was the Week That Was, Route 66, the pilot of the tv version of Marty; Profiles in Courage, an anthology series on NBC

Chapter 3

On appearing as "Tiny Baker" in Marcus Welby, M.D, the ABC pilot for the television medical series; the NBC pilot movie Night Gallery, written by Rod Serling; on his film career including Divorce, American Style; The Debbie Reynolds Show; on Debbie Reynolds

Chapter 4

On the transition from live television to videotape; on the made-for-TV-movie A Step Out of Line, on CBS, with Peter Falk, Peter Lawford; on The Dean Martin Show, and special guests; on Perry Cuomo, Andy Williams; on Miracle on 34th Street; on being cast on Happy Days, as Howard Cunningham

Chapter 5

On the rising popularity of Happy Days; on Garry Marshall; on the differences between working in television, film, and theater; on the inspiration for "Howard Cunningham"; on the closeness of the cast; on working with Ron Howard, Erin Moran, Henry Winkler

Chapter 6

On the cast of Happy Days; Anson Williams, Don Most, Thomas Miller, Scott Baio, Pat Morita; on how the show was shot, a typical workweek; on specific episodes; on shooting the final episodes, on Ron Howard leaving the show

Chapter 7

On appearances on Murder, She Wrote, ad Sheriff Amos Tupper; on the Father Dowling Mysteries on NBC and how the series came about 

Chapter 8

On the legacy of Happy Days; how he'd like to be remembered
Shows

Dean Martin Show, The

View Show Page
Tom Bosley on appearing as a regular on the The Dean Martin Show; Greg Garrison

Debbie Reynolds Show, The

View Show Page
Tom Bosley on The Debbie Reynolds Show on NBC, he was a regular castmember

Father Dowling Mysteries

View Show Page
Tom Bosley on how the Father Dowling Mysteries came about

Happy Days

View Show Page
Tom Bosley on his casting on Happy Days and how quickly the first episodes were shot
02:54
Tom Bosley on why Happy Days was so popular
01:03
Tom Bosley on dropped older son "Chuck," played by Gavan O'Herlihy, on Happy Days
01:16
Tom Bosley on the inspiration for "Howard Cunningham"; on the closeness of the cast; Ron Howard, Erin Moran, Henry Winkler
Tom Bosley on the biggest laugh he got with a Happy Days' episode where Mr. C deals with bigotry 
01:16
Tom Bosley on "Be the First on your Block", a Happy Days episode where Mr. C builds a bomb shelter

Marcus Welby, M.D.

View Show Page
Tom Bosley on appearing as "Tiny Baker" in Marcus Welby, M.D the ABC pilot for the television medical series

Murder, She Wrote

View Show Page
Tom Bosley on location shooting for Murder, She Wrote in Mendocino, CA (which served as the fictional Cabot Cove, Maine)
00:41
Tom Bosley on the number of appearances he made on Murder, She Wrote
00:32
Tom Bosley on his Murder, She Wrote character "Sheriff Amos Tupper"
00:40
Tom Bosley on an unusual location predicament during the filming of the Murder, She Wrote episode "Joshua Peabody Died Here... Possibly"
01:29

Night Gallery

View Show Page
Tom Bosley on his role as Sidney Resnick in the NBC pilot for Night Gallery, a supernatural anthology series on NBC written by Rod Serling and directed by Steven Speilberg
Topics

Characters & Catchphrases

View Topic
Tom Bosley on his Murder, She Wrote character "Sheriff Amos Tupper"
00:40
People

Gavan O'Herlihy

View Person Page
Tom Bosley on dropped older son "Chuck," played by Gavan O'Herlihy, on Happy Days
01:16

All Interviews

Q
S