Inside Gilligan’s Island

From Creation to Syndication


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SKU: 9780786463688 Categories: , ,

About the Book

While every new TV series has to face some problems, no show had to overcome greater obstacles than Gilligan’s Island. In spite of that, no series has achieved greater success, as measured by the fact that Gilligan’s Island has given rise to three TV movies, two animated series, and is the most rerun program in the entire history of television.
Now, Sherwood Schwartz, creator, writer, and producer of Gilligan’s Island, tells the life story of the show: from the labor pains of scripting, casting, and production to its golden years of afternoon reruns. Fascinating history that could be known only by the show’s creator is enhanced by wonderful photos, sketches, and other illustrations from the author’s personal collection, as well as the guest forewords by all seven “Castaways.” An appendix lists plots, writers and directors for every episode. All this behind-the-scenes information makes the book a special treat, not only for fans, but for anyone interested in an inside look at the television industry.

About the Author(s)

The late Sherwood Schwartz lived in Beverly Hills, California.

Bibliographic Details

Sherwood Schwartz
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 342
Bibliographic Info: 100 photos, appendices, index
Copyright Date: 2011 [1988]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6368-8
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8488-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vii

Preface      xi

Forewords      xiii

Introduction      xv

1. The Importance of Being Illiterate      1

2. The Home Front      7

3. The Longest Journey Starts with the Dreaded Blank Page      11

4. One Ten-Cent Phone Call      21

5. In the Beginning Was the Word      26

6. The Songbird from Passaic      31

7. Sometimes Smoke Gets in Your Eyes      42

8. Where, When, How and with Whom      44

9. Gilligan, the Skipper Too, the Millionaire and His Wife, the Movie Star, the Professor and Mary Ann      49

10. The Hills Are Alive with the Sound of Crickets      69

11. Everybody Remembers That Day      76

12. Left at the Post      82

13. You Can’t Win ‘Em All      84

14. Left at the Post Again . . . and Again      89

15. Setting Gilligan’s Island Free      91

16. A Meeting at Mount Olympus      106

17. Another Meeting at Mount Olympus      121

18. Yet Another Meeting at Mount Olympus      127

19. One More Meeting at Mount Olympus      132

20. Always Be Nice to Your Script Editor      136

21. Life on the Stage      140

22. Gilligan’s Island Hits the Airwaves, and Vice Versa      161

23. A Captain Should Go Down with His Own Ship      173

24. Send Help Before It’s Too Late      184

25. Pratfalls and Philosophy      190

26. “Whatever Happened to Gunsmoke?”      196

27. Big Julie Rolls the Dice      204

28. Gilligan Gets Animated      207

29. A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Men’s Room      211

30. Rescued After Fifteen Years      217

31 The “Castaways” Hotel and the Globetrotters      234

32. Priceless Rewards      244

33. Present Mirth Hath Present Laughter      256

34. The Three Musketeers      264

Epilogue      271

Appendix 1: Episode Synopses      272

Appendix 2: Synopses of Gilligan’s Island Movies and Specials      308

Index      315

Book Reviews & Awards

“one can’t help but like this man…his anecdotes are told with charming panache…there aren’t many better story tellers than Schwartz. An excellent acquisition”—Library Journal; “rewarding…a…memoir from one of the most successful writer-producers…important…sparklingly written…warmly recommended”—Choice; “tells a classic tale of the television process and its difficulties”—USA Today; “what’s really useful about ‘Gilligan’s Island’ are the book’s two appendices…marvelous synopses”—Variety; “one of TV’s most popular series…tells the life story of the show”—New Books in the Communications Library; “traces the problems in establishing the series through to its success on network television and even greater success in syndication”—Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media; “easy, entertaining reading…excellent collection of photos”—The Tab (Boston); “may be the most engrossing book we have ever had in our hands…witty…fascinating firsthand account…an episode index that points out the basic themes or morals behind each plot”—The TV Collector; “the entire life story of the show…fascinating”—Wilson Library Bulletin; “[among] the most popular syndicated shows of all time…part of a flowering of wacky television humor that took place in the early Sixties…interesting information”—Rolling Stone.