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Brock

Interview with TLS writer Elroy Schwartz

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Elroy, who looks like an octogenarian David Crosby, has written novels, painted serious art and delved into past-life regressions. The latter is partly what first attracted me to him.

 

If I had known he also wrote for Groucho Marx, Bob Hope and Henny Youngman, I might still be paying him for treatments.

 

Now Elroy has written his memoir, titled “Hollywood Gibberish.” When it finds a publisher, it should get a subtitle like “The Bizarre Career of a Journeyman Writer.”

 

Elroy was hired to write and edit “Gilligan's Island” by his brother, Sherwood, who may or may not still have a home in Palm Springs. Elroy doesn't speak to him after a dispute turned litigious. But Elroy figures he did some of his best writing for “Gilligan's Island,” although he admits it wasn't Pulitzer-quality prose.

 

It was an achievement in overcoming huge obstacles.

 

“When they agreed to (air) the show, CBS' position was, ‘On the second show, establish a hotel that the Howells will have built. The Skipper and Gilligan will work for them there,'” Elroy said. “They couldn't believe you could get 30 episodes out of seven people stranded on an island.”

 

Elroy loved being a freelance writer because it gave him so many different challenges.

 

He wrote an episode of “The Lucy Show” even though its writing staff didn't take outside submissions. He had an idea for Gilligan that he thought would be ideal for Lucille Ball, so he offered to write it for free if Lucy's staff didn't find it funny.

 

 

More of the interview and more on Lucy at the link: http://www.mydesert.com/article/20100824/LIFESTYLES01/8240311/Television+writer+hypnotized+by+own+%E2%80%98+Gibberish+

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I was just about to post this too. It sure explains a lot. I'm glad Elroy said Lucy was nice. She certainly was being nice if she told him "Lucy the Superwoman" was funny. I think Elroy is also credited as cowriter with Bob O'Brien on "Lucy Gets a Roommate" and "Lucy and Carol in Palm Springs."

 

It's interesting that Elroy and his brother are no longer speaking.

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I was just about to post this too. It sure explains a lot. I'm glad Elroy said Lucy was nice. She certainly was being nice if she told him "Lucy the Superwoman" was funny. I think Elroy is also credited as cowriter with Bob O'Brien on "Lucy Gets a Roommate" and "Lucy and Carol in Palm Springs."

 

It's interesting that Elroy and his brother are no longer speaking.

 

Well I'M not speaking to him either! Because of "Superwoman". If this was the script of his they bought, imagine what his other script was like:

the sequel to "Superwoman"? "Lucy Meets the Super-Gorilla" "Lucy babysits neighbor Elvia Allman's gorilla, whose adrenal gland gets stuck just as she's about to meet Art Linkletter"--which given some of the scripts they did doesn't sound TOO far-fetched

 

I'm of the mind that Schwartz's Carol Burnett scripts may have been revamped by O'Brien, because I doubt they worked together.

 

And it's not true that the Lucy Show staff didn't accept outside submissions...Would that it were! We would have been spared "Rain Goddess" "Mooney the Monkey" "Robert Goulet" "Mickey Rooney" and "Bean Queen". I don't mind that last one so much, although writer Phil Leslie exhumed a script he wrote for "Fibber McGee"'s radio show. I know because one day on an old-time-radio show, I heard it!

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Elroy's a HYPOTHERAPIST??

Well, that makes sense.

Though this gives me an idea similar to the theme used in both "The Lucille Ball Comedy Hour" and "Lucy Moves to NBC". Since TLBCH was considered as a new format for a Lucy series, each week a hack writer could hypnotize studio mogul Lucille Ball into taking a bad script which could segue into something like "Music Mart". Then later she comes to before the closing credits and throws the writer out!

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