"One of the great entertainment inventions of all time is the sitcom."
About This Interview
In his nearly four-hour Archive interview, Lowell Ganz recalls how The Dick Van Dyke Show impacted his desire to become a writer and work in television. He talks about his early writing partnership with Mark Roth and how they got on the writing staff at The Odd Couple. He details writing under the tutelage of Garry Marshall for the demanding Jack Klugman and Tony Randall, and recounts what he learned in The Odd Couple writer's room. He chronicles his work on Happy Days, helping the show transition from a one-camera to three-camera show in front of a live audience, and describes the great success that came along with that change. He outlines being tapped by Garry Marshall to write and produce the Happy Days spin-off Laverne & Shirley and talks of the difficulty he experienced with the various personalities involved with the program. Ganz discusses being fired from Laverne & Shirley, creating his favorite show Busting Loose, and explains his eventual split from partner Mark Rothman. He also touches on his success in feature films with partner Babaloo Mandel, shares his feelings on how the industry has changed, and offers advice to aspiring writers. Lee Goldberg conducted the interview on May 6, 2011 in Beverly Hills, California.