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Written By Cast Member
Sometimes actors want to have a say in the words they're given; sometimes they want to stretch their artistic muscles; sometimes they look at the scripts they have to do and think, "I could do better than this!" When this happens, and the producers are on their side (or the network is), you have something written by a cast member.

Much less prevalent than Directed by Cast Member, particularly in these days of arc-driven television. Writing is less glamorous than directing, for one thing, and it's harder to develop a story from scratch than to bring someone else's to the screen.

Key to both of these tropes is that the actor gets into writing or directing through the show they're on, without having a previous background in it (let alone being the series creator). For the opposite direction of crossover, see Descended Creator and Creator Cameo. For shows where the cast and the writing staff heavily overlap, see Cast Full of Writers.


Examples:

Live-Action Film

Live-Action TV

Radio
  • In 1955, The Archers had an episode where Grace Archer, the wife of Phil, was killed off. (It may or may not have been coincidence that the episode went out on BBC radio the very night commercial television began.) The script had Grace's fate be conveyed in the final line of dialogue thusly: "She... she died in my arms... on the way to hospital," but Norman Painting, who played Phil, suggested the line go "In my arms... on the way to hospital... she's dead!" Suffice to say that not only was this one of the most talked-about episodes of the soap, but Painting went on to write many, many episodes (and the book Forever Ambridge 25 Years of The Archers), as well as act in them.

Theatre
  • In Godspell, "By My Side," the only song retained from the original Off-Off-Broadway production, was composed by its performers, Peggy Gordon and Gilmer McCormick (with lyrics by non-cast-member Jay Hamburger).

Western Animation
  • Dan Castellaneta has so far written seven episodes of The Simpsons with his wife Deb Lacusta ("Days Of Wine And D'oh'ses", "Gump Roast", "The Ziff Who Came To Dinner," "Kiss Kiss Bang Bangalore," "The Fight Before Christmas," "A Midsummer's Nice Dream," and "The Ten-Per-Cent Solution").
    • He also co-wrote at least one sketch of The Tracey Ullman Show.
  • Jack Mercer not only voiced Popeye but wrote several of his screen exploits.
  • Will Friedle has written two episodes of ThunderCats (2011): "The Trials of Lion-O - Part 2" and "Birth of the Blades". Both focus on Friedle's character, Lion-O.
  • Voice actor Billy West received co-author credit on the The Ren & Stimpy Show episode "Ol' Blue Nose".
  • April Winchell, the voice of Miss Finster, also did some punch-up writing for Recess: School's Out
  • On Mickey's Christmas Carol, Alan Young, the voice of Scrooge, receives a story credit.
  • Some episodes of Spliced were written by Mike Kiss, who also voices Mister Smarty Smarts.

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