Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Remembering the Legendary Garry Marshall; Terry Crews Set for an Adventure

Garry Marshall

Actor, director, producer and writer Garry Marshall, who created Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley and Mork & Mindy, has died. He died on July 19 at a hospital in Burbank, California due to complications of pneumonia after suffering a stroke. Mr. Marshall was 81.

Marshall's career began as a writer for Tonight Starring Jack Paar in 1960. He moved to Hollywood in 1961, where he teamed up with Jerry Belson as a writer for television. He wrote episodes of The Danny Thomas Show, The Bill Dana Show, Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C., Hank, The Lucy Show and The Dick Van Dyke Show.

The first sitcom he created and produced was Hey, Landlord, which aired for one season on NBC in 1966-1967. The series stared Will Hutchins, Sandy Baron, Pamela Rodgers, Miko Mayama and Michael Constantine. He also directed and guest starred in an episode.

Marshall and Belson developed and adapted The Odd Couple for television in 1970. The popular series, which starred Tony Randall and Jack Klugman, ran for five seasons on ABC until 1975. Myrna Turner, Oscar's secretary, was played by Garry's sister, Penny Marshall. He directed six episodes, wrote seven episodes and appeared in several episodes in various roles.

He created and produced The Brian Keith Show (titled The Little People during its first season), which aired for two seasons on NBC from 1972-1974. The series starred Brian Keith, Shelley Fabares, Victoria Young and Nancy Kulp.

In 1972, he created with Thomas L. Miller the short-lived CBS sitcom Me and the Chimp. The series starred Ted Bessell, Anita Gillette, Scott Kolden and Kami Kolter.

He wrote an episode of Love, American Style titled "Love and the Television Set" (later retitled "Love and the Happy Days" for syndication), which featured Ron Howard, Marion Ross and Anson Williams, that served as the pilot episode of Happy Days. The episode aired on aired on ABC on February 25, 1972.

Happy Days would become a series on January 15, 1974. The popular series aired on ABC for 11 seasons from 1974-1984. The series starred Ron Howard, Henry Winkler, Tom Bosley, Marion Ross, Anson Williams, Donny Most and Erin Moran. Marshall directed the second season episode, "Haunted." He wrote two episodes of the series. He also appeared in two episodes as a drummer.

Several successful spin-offs would be launched from Happy Days. Laverne & Shirley aired on ABC for eight seasons from 1976-1983. The series starred Penny Marshall, Cindy Williams, Eddie Mekka, Phil Foster, David L. Lander, Michael McKean and Betty Garrett. Garry directed two episodes. He also appeared uncredited as a drummer in two episodes.

Marshall's son, Scott, wanted to see an alien character on Happy Days. This led to the appearance of Mork (Robin Williams) in the season five episode "My Favorite Orkan." Mork & Mindy aired for four seasons on ABC from 1978-1982. The series also starred Pam Dawber, Conrad Janis, Elizabeth Kerr, Tom Poston, Jay Thomas and Gina Hecht. Marshall directed an episode in 1980.

Other Happy Days spin-offs included Blansky's Beauties, Out of the Blue and Joanie Loves Chachi (starring Scott Baio and Erin Moran). Marshall directed an episode of the short-lived Blansky's Beauties, which starred Nancy Walker, Lynda Goodfriend, Johnny Desmond, Eddie Mekka and Scott Baio.

He created and produced the short-lived sitcom Who's Watching the Kids in 1978. The series aired for one season on NBC. It starred Caren Kaye, Lynda Goodfriend, Scott Baio, Tammy Lauren, Marcia Lewis, Larry Breeding, Lorrie Mahaffey, Jim Belushi, Shirley Kirkes and Elaine Bolton.

In 1979, he created and produced with Dale McRaven the sitcom Angie. The series aired for two seasons on ABC from 1979-1980. It starred Donna Pescow, Robert Hays, Doris Roberts, Debralee Scott, Sharon Spelman and John Randolph.

Marshall, Mark Rothman and Lowell Ganz created the short-lived 1979 ABC sitcom Makin' It, which starred David Naughton, Greg Antonacci, Denise Miller and Ellen Travolta. He served as an executive producer of the 1982-1983 sitcom The New Odd Couple.

Garry Marshall in The Odd Couple

In addition to his work as a director, producer and writer, he also appeared as an actor. He appeared in 24 episodes of Murphy Brown from 1994-1997 as Stan Lansing, the micro-managing network president. Some of his other sitcom guest appearances included The Simpsons (voice in two episodes), Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, Father of the Pride (voice), According to Jim, Louie, Two and a Half Men, Liv and Maddie, Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Hot in Cleveland. He played Oscar Madison's (Matthew Perry) father, Walter Madison, in an episode of The Odd Couple in April 2016. He also served as a consultant on the remake.

Marshall was also a very successful film director. His biggest blockbuster was 1990's Pretty Woman, which starred Richard Gere and Julia Roberts. His other credits included Young Doctors in Love, The Flamingo Kid, Nothing in Common, Overboard, Beaches, Frankie and Johnny, Exit to Eden, Dear God, The Other Sister, Runaway Bride, The Princess Diaries, The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement, Georgia Rule, Valentine's Day, New Year's Eve and 2016's Mother's Day.

The Archive of American Television conducted an extensive interview with him on August 28, 2000.

Survivors include his wife, Barbara, to whom he was married since 1963; son Scott, a film director; and daughters Lori, an actress and casting director, and Kathleen, an actress; a number of grandchildren; and sisters Penny Marshall, an actress and film director, and Ronny Hallin, a TV producer.

Mr. Marshall was a true legend. He created so many memorable sitcoms. He received five Emmy nominations for his work. There will likely never be another person that has four of the top five rated sitcoms on the air at the same time as he did with Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley, Mork & Mindy and Angie in the 1978-79 season. We thank him for all of the laughs and many hours of entertainment he brought us over the years. He will be deeply missed.

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Terry Crews - Celebrity Adventure Club

Actor and former NFL player, Terry Crews, returns to his Michigan roots to champion a revitalized Motor City in Travel Channel's Celebrity Adventure Club. The second in a series of specials, this episode premieres on Saturday, July 23, at 10:00 a.m. ET/PT. In each hour-long feature, Travel Channel hands the camera to some of the world's biggest stars as they travel around the world on an intimate adventure of discovery and exploration. In this special, Crews kicks off his journey in his hometown Flint, Mich., where he reminisces about his childhood. Next, he visits two automotive companies in Detroit that have seen a major comeback -- General Motors, where he steps onto the assembly line to fasten some bolts, and Ford, where he test drives a 2016 Mustang convertible. He also meets up with baseball legend Willie Horton at Comerica Park to discuss Detroit's resilience and rising community. Terry Crews is a former NFL player, best-selling author of the memoir "Manhood" and an actor who has appeared in a number of primetime television and box office hits including Fox's Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and the Expandables franchise. Crews is also heavily invested in philanthropic endeavors, namely as a celebrity ambassador for the Polaris Project, which is a leading organization in the global fight against human trafficking and modern-day slavery.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Saturday, February 17

The Middle - "The Setup" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Frankie is tasked with being at her mom Pat’s (Marsha Mason) beck and call when she has to stay for a few days at the Heck house after coming down with an ailment. Meanwhile, just when it looks like Sean is about to ask Sue out on a date, Sue nervously blurts out that maybe they should both try to set each other up on a date with one of their friends; and Axl and Brick ponder what it is exactly that Mike does at the quarry.

The Middle - "Eyes Wide Open" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Axl heads to Chicago to visit Hutch for the weekend but discovers that his friend, who has his own apartment and a job, is now acting more like a responsible adult than the free-spirited college student he once knew. Meanwhile, Sue’s excitement over having the apartment to herself over the weekend turns to horror when she is unable to sleep after watching “Silence of the Lambs”; and Brick enlists Frankie and Mike’s aid to help convince Lilah, a new student who doesn’t know anyone at school yet, that she and Brick would make a cute couple.

black-ish - "Please Don't Feed the Animals" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Bow keeps in touch with Dre’s incarcerated godbrother, Omar, but when they find out he is being released from prison, Omar’s future sparks debate. Meanwhile, Ruby lets it slip to the kids that she’s been to jail and they push her to tell them more secrets from her past.

black-ish - "Charity Case" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Dre is chosen to lead Stevens & Lido’s new charity campaign which helps people give back to their community. When Bow advises Dre that there is more to giving back than cutting checks, he decides to donate some of his clothes to a man in need. Meanwhile, Junior fails his driving test, so Ruby offers to chaperone a trip with him and the twins on an informative outing.

The Thundermans - "Rhythm n' Shoes " (Nickelodeon, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Determined to meet a famous pop singer visiting Hiddenville High, Phoebe and Max devise elaborate schemes to insert themselves into her performance that quickly lead to disastrous results.

Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn - "The Harper Quad-Jobbers" (Nickelodeon, 8:30PM ET/PT)
The quads try to earn money for a pool so that their house can be the place everyone wants to hang out at during the summer.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of February 12)

Friday, February 16

  • Sam Rockwell (F Is for Family) - Watch Sam on a repeat of Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Laura Benanti (The Detour/Go On/Starved) - Laura appears on a repeat of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Tiffani Thiessen (Alexa & Katie/Good Morning, Miami/Saved by the Bell/Saved by the Bell: The College Years) - Tiffani chats on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Holly Robinson Peete (Hangin' with Mr. Cooper/For Your Love) - Holly and her husband Rodney talk about the Hallmark Channel original series Meet the Peetes on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Becki Newton (Divorce/Weird Loners/The Goodwin Games/How I Met Your Mother) - Becki chats about Divorce on LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Lori Loughlin (Fuller House/Hudson Street/Full House) - Lori appears on Good Day New York on WNYW-Fox5 in New York sometime between 7-10am.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (November/December/January)

The Wayans Bros. - The Complete Third Season Living Single - The Complete Third Season Alice - The Complete Sixth Season One Day at a Time - The Complete Series Fuller House - The Complete Second Season

11/07 - American Dad! - Volume 12
11/07 - Family Guy - Season Fifteen
11/07 - The Wayans Bros. - The Complete Third Season
11/14 - D.C. Follies - The Complete Series
11/21 - Living Single - The Complete Third Season
11/24 - Grandfathered - Season 1
12/05 - Alice - The Complete Sixth Season
12/05 - One Day at a Time - The Complete Series
12/05 - The Simpsons - The Eighteenth Season
12/05 - South Park - The Complete First Season (Blu-ray) / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5
12/12 - Fuller House - The Complete Second Season
12/19 - South Park - The Complete Sixth Season (Blu-ray) / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10 / 11
01/09 - Girlfriends - The Complete Series
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest