The Archive is very saddened to hear of the death of noted television producer Henry Colman, who passed away on Wednesday, November 7th at the age of 89. Not only was Henry an Archive interviewee, but he was also one of the Archive’s main interviewers — having completed over 33 oral history interviews for the Archive of American Television’s collection. We will miss his warmth and enthusiasm.
Henry began his career in television just as it was beginning — as a production coordinator on a local musical show, Easy Does It. In 1951, he became an assistant to the director on Kraft Television Theatre and then worked on other programs including Robert Montgomery Presents and Colgate Comedy Hour. He then became a television executive, overseeing the pilot of The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, and working on programs such as Green Acres and Hawaii Five-0. He later worked on the development of The Love Boat, where he became line producer, and went on to produce the series Hotel. Beginning in 1987, he produced a number of TV movies including Body of Evidence, Parent Trap III and The Rape of Dr. Willis.
Below are some selections from his 2001 Archive interview:
On the genesis of The Love Boat:
On his advice to aspiring producers:
On being an interviewer for the Archive of American Television:
On how he’d like to be remembered:
I’d like to be remembered as being generous and kind and with enough talent that I got the job done, and did it well.
As a tribute to his work and love for the Archive of American Television, donations in his memory are being accepted. (Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.)