Saturday, March 24, 2012

The wildest wrap party ever

Most sitcoms are finishing up their season right about now.   They usually have a wrap party and take a cast & crew picture.  Here's one from either the 6th or 7th season of CHEERS.  I'm a couple of rows above Woody.  I had a beard back then. You're welcome to make fun. 

As you can see, there are a lot of people who work on a television series, and as I look back at the picture I find myself missing people I haven't seen in years.  Grips and post production people.   We had a great group at CHEERS.  The other thing I love about this picture is that the actors just blend in with everyone else.  A camera puller or production assistant is just as prominent as the stars.   Thanks to David Reid for posting this photo on Facebook. 

Several years when I was doing ALMOST PERFECT starring Nancy Travis, we did an episode centered on a wrap party.  In the series Nancy was producer of a cop show.   During the party it's learned that the show isn't coming back so everyone lets down their guard and tells everyone else what they really think of them.  Then they find out the show has been picked up.  How do they mend all these now-broken bridges?   It was written by me, David Isaacs, and Robin Schiff, and I directed it.  This was only my third directing assignment and as you'll see in part 3 it became very ambitious and complicated.  We staged a hug pie fight (that we shot live in front of the audience).   Enjoy! 

Congratulations to all the casts & crews that made it through another year.  And thanks for some great television. 



23 comments:

sephim said...

I gather the beard was an attempt to emulate Spielberg's look, ergo his success.

Or you were too lazy to shave.

Sebastian said...

Instantly saw you Ken

Opened the picture, saw Moses...

Great Big Radio Guy said...

The maitre'd stole the show.

Michael said...

Ken - are you going to be working any of the Mariner games in Japan next week?

Scott Carpenter said...

Great pic -- thanks for sharing it. Ted Danson looks like he's photoshopped into that picture.

KG said...

Having a hard time finding you, Ken. Are you the one who is almost on top and right before the ladder?

Thanks for answering my question yesterday, btw.

Brent said...

Ken, if you looked like that now you'd have trouble getting on an airplane. You know TSA stands for Too Stupid to be Alive...

Max Clarke said...
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Max Clarke said...
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Max Clarke said...

Good photo.

Ken was easy to spot. Earl Pomerantz recently posted a photo of his own, also in a beard, back in the 70s.

Seeing a Hollywood group picture reminds me of Robert De Niro in his movie, "What Just Happened?" He plays a Hollywood producer, and there's a scene when he is invited to participate in a big Vanity Fair kind of photo shoot about Hollywood power people. De Niro tries to upgrade his location in the scene. Think he argues that Mr So-and-So doesn't deserve his place, he's on the way out.

Jim said...

Is it par for the course that writers start their show-year clean shaven and finish with a beard?

RCP said...

"I'm a couple of rows above Woody. I had a beard back then. You're welcome to make fun."

I have to chuckle, Ken, because we're always our own worst critics when it comes to our appearance. Now where is that photograph. A couple of rows above Woody you said? Let's see...ah...

Um...thanks for another great post - I laughed all the way through this episode.

PS. Speaking as someone who also had a beard for years (the facial kind) - you look good!

David Whitham said...

and once again, it looks lie Paul wasn't invited...

Dan Tedson said...

They made Paul take the picture.

Paul Duca said...

I understand perhaps THE wildest wrap party was after the first season of TAXI. Someone drove a Paramount executive's car into the set...not on, INTO.

Your Tuesday appearance...isn't that where David teaches--and if so, does that mean you'll get second billing?

Ema simpson said...

I have passed hard time to find you Ken! But after coming here I feel pleasure. You are about top just ahead of ranking.

Mike said...

I don't see you.
A couple of rows above Woody is Cliff and Carla. Did you mean to say a few, or are you further down the row?

MattAnthony said...

Ken, did you write the Cheers Thanksgiving food fight , too? This is not to bring up copying, but to make mention of how well they were both set up (the tarts didn't come out of nowhere) and then executed.

jbryant said...

If it helps, Ken's actually about five rows behind Woody, and he's sporting the only pitch-black beard on that side of the photo.

Lasso Joe said...

A hug pie fight! Sounds sweet...

chuckcd said...

Why does Ted Danson look like a cardboard cutout?

Chris said...

The picture is from season 6 of Cheers - that was the year that Kirstie Alley's hair was dark and curly. For season 7, it was lighter and straight.

Lyle said...

Hi, Ken:

New follower.

First, thanks for recommending the Earl Pomerantz blog. Thanks to you and that recommendation I have not been getting to sleep till 3/4am for most of last week (I started with his blog when he started in 2008 and brought it up to the current date).

Secondly, Earl comments frequently that he is "out of the business" because the powers that be are buying younger talent (writers) and that the parade has passed him by; that the networks/producers are looking for writers who are more oriented toward young viewer demographics. Good writing is good writing. Earl is not only good, he's great. Love his humor. Had me cracking up a number of times, all by myself, at 3am.

I then watched the video of the "warp party" with Nancy Travis. I recognized her as one of Becker's girl friends from that series. Loved her work then . . . love it now. Thought the writing and acting on this show was great (as well as the basic premise). A shame it is not still on the air. I would love to watch more of it. You write a mean script!

The thought struck me . . . of the other characters on "Becker," did anyone else catch on with another series? I was fond of Shawnee Smith's character . . . but have not seen her on any other series; same with Hattie Winston. I see Danson has hooked up with another series . . . but that's no surprise. Just hate to see other superb talent that is not being used (and enjoyed).

Enough. Many other thoughts. Another time.

Love your blog, your writing, your scripts. I reckon I'll be staying up till 3/4am for the next several weeks just getting caught up on your blog and it's archived copies.

Keep up the great work. Loving it!

lyle e davis
editor/publisher
The Paper

http://www.thecommunitypaper.com