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Creator / Garry Marshall

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"Life is more important than show business."

Garry Kent Marshall (November 13, 1934 July 19, 2016) was an American director, producer, and actor, best known for comedies.

A sickly Bronx boy whose father was a producer of industrial films and whose mother who was an avid amateur dance teacher, he eventually became a drummer and a humor writer which accommodated his weak health.

After studying journalism and a stint in the U.S. Army where he served in the Armed Forces media services, he moved to Hollywood and became a television writer, partnering with Jerry Belson on such programs as The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Danny Thomas Show, and The Lucy Show. He also wrote a couple of screenplays, including 1970 film The Grasshopper.

Eventually, he moved up to producer and became one of the dominant ones in the 1970s with major comedy series like The Odd Couple, Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley (which co-starred his sister, Penny Marshall), and Mork & Mindy (which gave Robin Williams his major break into stardom).

From the 1980s onward, he directed comedies like The Flamingo Kid, Beaches, and The Princess Diaries and occasionally worked as an actor and voice artist in both film and television. In 2016, he died in a Burbank, California hospital of pneumonia after suffering a stroke at age 81.

Films directed

Tropes associated with Marshall's work:

  • Real-Life Relative: He was famously unabashed about hiring family members to work with him; in addition to successfully hiring his sister Penny Marshall as an actor, he hired his father Tony as a producer and his sister Ronny as his casting director.
  • Romantic Comedy: Happy Days centered around the theme of high school guys in The '50s picking up chicks while trying to win their hearts by serenading them with Silly Love Songs, all while remaining a sitcom with the signature Laugh Track and many goofy Catchphrases ("Ayyy!", "Whoa...", "Correctamundo.") by Arthur "Fonzie" "The Fonz" Fonzarelli.
  • Trolling Creator: Chuck's sudden disappearance from the series was justified by his original actor, Gavin O'Herlihy, quitting the show out of dissatisfaction for his role, and his replacement, Randolph Roberts, not sufficing for the role. Out of nowhere, Gary Marshall decided to write Chuck out of the show to see how many angry backlash fan letters he'd receive. Luckily for him, he didn't receive many. See more info here.