Professor Firstdraft’s GOODTIME SCRIPTORIUM

Dispatches from the far reaches of the WGF.

Oral History: Our Garry Marshall Interview, and an explanation

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Over the years, the Writers Guild Foundation has conducted dozens of interviews documenting the oral histories of screen and television writers. We did it in an effort to preserve their stories before they passed on, and to document the conditions and experiences that crafted the experiences of the creators of the 20th Century’s most memorable popular culture.

It was a great idea with near-perfect execution, with one flaw: Once we recorded these histories, we burned them to DVDs and put them on a shelf in the back room of our library. And we never really publicized the fact that we had them.

Lately, we’ve been trying to change that. Slowly, we’ve been moving all of the content that we own to YouTube – including streamed events that were previously kept behind a paywall. It’s all on our YouTube channel, including our look inside the writers room of NEW GIRL, our oral history of Sherwood Schwartz (part 1, part 2), and more.

We’ll be adding more content in the coming months, as well as podcasts of our recent events, like our evening with Billy Ray, our GENRE SMASH! interview with Ash Miller and Zack Stentz, and some of our upcoming events as well.

In the meantime, here’s our most recent addition: Our interview with TV maestro Garry Marshall. I haven’t watched this video yet, but it’s got a special place in my heart – I grew up watching HAPPY DAYS, LAVERNE & SHIRLEY and THE DICK VAN DYKE SHOW in syndication every day after school, and along with a handful of other shows (mostly comedies from the late 70s, including GOOD TIMES, WHAT’S HAPPENING! and THREE’S COMPANY), formed the basis of my passion for good screen storytelling.

So without further ado, here’s Garry.