Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Garry Marshall

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Some very sad news last night...

Garry Marshall, a giant of TV comedy whose long list of credits include such landmark series as Happy Days, The Odd Couple and The Dick Van Dyke Show, has died. He was 81. 

He also helmed 18 feature films including Pretty Woman, and had acting credits dating to the 1960s. 

Marshall also co-created and wrote such classic 1970s comedies as Happy Days spinoffs Laverne & Shirley and Mork & Mindy. The former co-starring his sister Penny Marshall was the No. 1 primetime series in back-to-back seasons, and the latter made a star of Robin Williams. With those and Happy Days, the Bronx native had a hand in creating, writing and producing three of the four top-rated TV series of 1978-79. 

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During the 1970s and ’80s, Marshall also co-created and/or wrote for and directed sitcoms Blansky’s Beauties, Angie, Makin’ It, The Brian Keith Show, The New Odd Couple, Me and the Chimp and yet another Happy Days spinoff in Joanie Loves Chachi. Marshall already was a veteran of the TV comedy game by the 1970s, having written multiple episodes of such series as Make Room for Daddy, The Joey Bishop Show, The Lucy Show and Love, American Style. He also penned 18 episodes of The Dick Van Dyke Show‘s final season. 

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Marshall directed the 1990 smash comedy Pretty Woman, which made a star of Julia Roberts. He would direct her again in Runaway Bride (1999) and his recent holiday-themed films Mother’s Day — which opened in April — and Valentine’s Day. His other film directing credits include the Michelle Pfeiffer-Al Pacino drama Frankie & Johnny (see photo below), Beaches, Overboard, The Princess Diaries, The Flamingo Kid and Young Doctors in Love.

I think I've watched just about every series and movie that he ever worked on over the years. His projects always seemed to have an element of fun and usually left you smiling at the end.

That is a pretty amazing legacy to leave behind.

He will be missed.

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