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Old 09-13-2002, 09:23 AM   #16
David77
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Working on Happy Days was awesome. It was a great experience especially at that time of my life. Every week there was this exciting build up for showtime on Friday night when they filmed the episode. Not tape. Film. The production booth was right above the studio audience on the set. I only have good things to say about the cast and the Producers. Gary Marshall didn't actually work on a daily basis with the writing staff. He was usually over seeing everything from his office which was across the street. I only remember Gary Marshall coming in on one episode. I think it was the Thanksgiving episode. It wasn't going well and I can remember Gary Marshall coming in and everyone had to stay extra late and re-write the entire script. That only happened once! Which is amazing. The good thing about staying late was they sent out for dinner next door at a restaurant called Nickodell's. So I ate well on Table nights. Table nights were usually Wednesday night. I didn't really socialize with the cast. I was more with the writers, Fred & Brian mainly. I used to have breakfast with Ron Leavit in the commisary. I can remember hanging out back stage and talking with Henry Winkler. He said, "You always have to have a gesture like Thumbs up" and then he did his Thumbs Up. He told me to always remember that when I write. Years later like 1984, I was recording music so I sent Henry Winkler my demo. He was nice enough to call me back and tell me he liked it. I thought that was cool. I did go to Anson Williams Bachelor Party at this fancy Chinese restaurant in Beverly Hills. I got there early and it was just me and Tom Bosley so we went for a walk all around Beverly Hills. We just talked general talk. He was very nice. A mellow Mr. C. I can remember Marion Ross being and looking a lot younger than Mrs. C. Just general stuff. I can remember that Gary Marshall had a milk shake machine in his office. Jerry Paris was cool. He was in high gear on Friday nights. Now a days the Producers and Directors have their own booths off stage during the tapings. Everything is tape and monitors. Back then it was the old days. Jerry Paris was on the floor with the actors and camera crew. It was cool to be on the floor during filming. I kind of felt like I was in the way though. Like yo there is a camera coming at me at fifty miles an hour. Usually I was in the booth. I can remember being on the floor for the Fonzie goes blind episode and Joanie smoking episodes. Like right on the floor as they filmed. It was cool. Friday nights were a blast. At this time in my life I am writing music now. The last show I wrote scripts for was The Blossom show.

Last edited by David77 : 09-19-2002 at 09:39 AM.
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Old 09-13-2002, 04:13 PM   #17
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David77, thank you soooo much for the informative behind the scenes at HD. I'm looking forward to catching up on the season six episodes that you were involved with.
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Old 09-13-2002, 04:14 PM   #18
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Isn't it true that the scenes from Arnolds & the Cunningham household were used during the same scene, but actually one was next door to another? It would make sense, because many scenes involved either one or the other! Alsio, what outtakes from the show stick out in your mind? I know there were several!
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Old 09-13-2002, 04:17 PM   #19
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Yes, Thank You SO Much!
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Old 09-13-2002, 08:47 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by David77
It could have been the end of season six. I didn't work on all twenty six episodes that year. I never did work with Robin Willaims. I worked on about twenty episodes. From July through December. It goes like this..
Around Christmas time 1978, Bob Brunner the head producer at the time, adapted the movie, The Bad News Bears for television. He left Happy Days at that time and took Brian Levant and Ron Levit to work with him. They were on a low budget and they couldn't hire any more writers. A new producer came in to Happy Days named Gary Menteer. They then brought in new writers Ketchem & DiMarco. They also did away with the apprentice writers for 1979. Which meant me. So by Christmas 1978 my time at Happy Days was over. I did get the Potise Quit School credit which got me in the union and I worked on other television shows later in my life. We're talking twenty four years ago so yeah, Life went on.

Well that makes sense if you left in christmas of 78 there was no way you was around for the Return of Mork-were there any crossover episodes during the fall of 78 with laverne and shirley?
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Old 09-14-2002, 12:02 AM   #21
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This is all facinating stuff! What I'm wondering, especially where you said (David) that you were from RI, and I'm from Mass., how did you end up in LA writing sitcoms! Did you go to school for it and if so where? I'm very facinated with the whole l'il guy (or girl) from New England goes to Hollywood and makes it big thing - especially in writing or production as opposed to acting. I would LOVE to get into something like that. How did you do it?
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Old 09-16-2002, 08:50 AM   #22
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The Cunningham's house set and the Arnold's set were right next to eachother. Arnold's was in the center and the Cunnigham's was to the right if you faced the stage. They were separate sets on the same floor. Any other sets that were used or built for the week were to the left of the stage. Sometimes they used the Arnold's area for big scenes. The bathroom set was on wheels and it was rolled in. Fronzie's Bedroom was to the left of Arnold's but it wasn't always up. Next question: How did I do it?
Will power. I have a very successful brother who has created many hit tv shows. Back in those days he had gone from Rhode Island on to work in tv as a writer in Hollywood. He is twelve years older than I am. So he left for Hollywood and became succesful. I was still a kid. My father really wanted me to follow in my brothers footsteps. It was his dream to see both our names together on tv. I felt that I had to prove to my father that I could do it. All along I was doing music too. So when I was eighteen I left for Hollywood. I wrote about twelve speculation scripts and sent them to agents all over Hollywood. Luckily for me big talent agencies also had apprentice agent programs at that time and this apprentice agent from Creative Artists Agency picked up on my scripts. She was just starting out and was hungry to work and so was I. They signed me onto Creative Artists and She sent my scripts over to Happy Days. Walter Kempley read a Fish episode that I wrote on spec and they set up an appointment to meet with me. When I went to the meeting he hired me on the spot. They hired me, Alan Goldstien, who wrote the Halloween episode, and Jeff Franklin went to Laverne & Shirley. Jeff later went on to create Full House. I did it without my brother's help. That was huge for me personally because I had this shadow over me most of my teen years. Walter Kempley had no idea who my brother was at that time even though he was producing Mash that year. However my father had past away and never saw any of this happen. Later on in life I worked for my brother on Blossom and both our names were up there on the screen so My Dad did get his wish. It just took fifteen years.

Last edited by David77 : 10-09-2002 at 12:08 PM.
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Old 09-16-2002, 08:54 AM   #23
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Thumbs up

http://artists.iuma.com/IUMA/Bands/THE_DAVID_REO_BAND/


If you go to my website and click on a song title there are more stories. Not Happy Days stories though. Those are more in the Blossom era.

Corner booth, dark restaurant, be there, whoa.

Last edited by David77 : 02-29-2004 at 02:41 PM.
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Old 09-16-2002, 10:10 AM   #24
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Out takes? There were so many. The one that sticks out in my mind this very second is when Ron Howard had to kiss this Actress in Arnold's and it was a real long kiss. I remember they had to do that scene over a few times. I remember him reacting when they had to do it over. Like Oh man, again?? It must be tough, huh?

No I never went to school for writing. I was into music. I went to school for music. The writing just happens when I write.

Last edited by David77 : 02-29-2004 at 02:42 PM.
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Old 09-16-2002, 03:53 PM   #25
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Wow, That Is Cool!!!
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Old 09-16-2002, 03:54 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally posted by David77
Out takes? There were so many. The one that sticks out in my mind this very second is when Ron Howard had to kiss this Actress in Arnold's and it was a real long kiss. I remember they had to do that scene over a few times. I remember him reacting when they had to do it over. Like Oh man, again?? It must be tough, huh?
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Old 09-17-2002, 04:09 PM   #27
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General Memories:
I remember joining the Happy Days baseball team but I never did get to play. I have a Happy Days baseball shirt with my name on it in my closet. I remember Happy days played Star Trek out on some small baseball field in Burbank. No huge crowd of press or fans were there. Just friends and the casts. It was pretty amazing seeing Captain Kirk and Sulu up to bat. I think Marion Ross pitched. I can remember going to Baseball practice at North Hollywood Park and I hung out with Donny Most. Out of all the Happy Days cast he was the one (in my opinion) that was not at all like his character. He was very serious.
Did you know Gary & Penny Marshall have a sister who was a producer on Happy Days? Her name is Ronnie Hallin. She looks just like Penny Marshall.
Did you know Suzi Quatro has a birth mark right under her left eye that makes her look like she has a shiner?
I remember getting a Christmas Card from Ron Howard that year.
Is that a nice guy or what?
Did you know I sold a story to Happy Days that never got filmed?
It was called, " Fonzie's Jacket". Someone stole his jacket and for his birthday Richie decided to get him a new one but they needed his exact measurements because Fonzie was so fussy about it, so they had to sneak into his apartment and try to get his measurements while he was sleeping. The producers liked it, they bought it and it never saw the light of day.
My first joke that got in was a sight gag on the Tornado show where someone says, "Grab Something Heavy" and Ralph grabs proffessor Himmel. Also when Richie says, "Ah". That was mine. I did it once. Ron Howard liked it and he kept doing it.
Did you know Jerry Paris was Jerry the dentist on the Dick Van Dyke show? Dick Van Dyke's neighbor?
Did you know Walter Kempley was a writer on The Dick Van Dyke Show and if I am not mistaken so was Gary Marshall.
Walter Kempley had moved to Paris, France. They called him back to work on Happy Days. He looked like a German/French guy. Tall, gray hair, glasses. I remember he smoked Dunhill cigarettes with a cigarette holder at the table. I could picture him in a smoking jacket like Hugh Heffner. Bob Brunner was the opposite. He wore jeans and a blue t-shirt. He was on a liquid diet. I never saw him eat. Bob Brunner reminded me of Fonzie. Those two sat together at the head of the table. Holly White was Bob's secretary and sometimes she sat in with us. She was very funny and attractive. Blonde hair. Built. She had a nice laugh that made everyone else laugh. She later went on to write quite a few episodes.
I sat between to Brian and Ron and across from Fred Fox Jr. and Michael Loman. Fred also did the warm up act with the studio audience on Friday nights. He was really funny. Quick witted. Brian Levant was amazing too. He could come in late to a meeting and know exactly what page and what line we were on and not only did he know that, he would have a joke or a change to put in. He had the scripts memorized within an hour. We worked on three scripts a week. Brian always brought toys and gadgets to the table. Fred had a nerf ball basketball set up in his office and we played a lot of nerf basketball while Ron Howard was out back playing real basketball. Just out the door and down the back stairs.
Henry Winkler only came in on Fridays to work. During the week they had a stand in. He learned the scripts at home. Paramount Studios had a cottage that they used for an exercise room. This was before personal trainers and high tech gyms. All they had in there was a weight bench with weights and some mats. I used to walk through there at lunch. Sometimes Scot Baio was in there, most of the time no one was in there. I remember one day I couldn't get in because Cindy Williams was meditating. And yes Henry wore a black t-shirt to appear slimmer. He also zipped his jacket up. That was an issue for him that year. I can remember Anson Williams telling him to work out in his car while driving by leaning side to side. Henry just looked at me with an expression like, "Yeah right". A few years later I was living at my brother's guest house and all the show business people were hooked on Body By Jake. It was Jake, Andy & Pete. They were brothers and they all looked alike. They had routes. They came right to the house and worked out. Andy did Jerry Mathers, My brother's wife and then Henry Winkler. So I guess Henry got a grip and was able to get back into the white t-shirt. They filmed my show on January 26th, 1979.
It was bitter sweet for me. I went to the filming but I had been laid off at Christmas. Laid off by Gary Marshall himself. There I was at my Hollywood writing & film debut and I was collecting unemployment. It was still a great experience. I still got it, even on unemployment. Ah, yep yep yep.

Last edited by David77 : 09-23-2002 at 04:20 PM.
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Old 09-17-2002, 05:40 PM   #28
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OH MY GOSH! An Ep Where Fonzie Lost His Jacket I Would LOVE To See An Ep About That! I Wish They Would Have Made It (That Would Have Been My ALL TIME FAVORITE Episode) AND Ah, THAT IS MY FAVE Richie Quote! You Made That? WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sorry! I'm Going A Little Crazy Here!

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Old 09-17-2002, 05:43 PM   #29
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Someone Call An Ambulance I Think I'm Having A Heart Attack Over Here! lol.
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Old 09-18-2002, 08:23 AM   #30
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Thanks Fonz.
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