Aaron Ruben, who produced The Andy Griffith Show and was Emmy-nominated for Sanford and Son, has died at the age of 95. Ruben began his career as a writer in radio, transitioning to television with series and specials that included Caesar’s Hour; in his early career he also directed for television, notably for The Phil Silvers Show. One of his last producing credits was the sitcom Too Close for Comfort. In his later years, Ruben was a court appointed children’s advocate.
Aaron Ruben was interviewed by the Archive of American Television on February 25, 1999. His four-and-a-half hour Archive interview is currently available to view online.
“I’m certainly proud to have been at the beginnings of The Andy Griffith Show. Andy gives me more credit than I deserve because he’s quoted about how I set the style for that show. I don’t know. I’m just glad I was there and was an important part of the structuring of the show. I nurtured it and nursed it and I thought I took really good care of it. It was five of the best years of my life in the business.”
Aaron Ruben was interviewed for four-and-a-half hours in Beverly Hills, CA. Ruben discussed his start as a radio writer for many popular stars including Dinah Shore, Burns and Allen, Fred Allen, Henry Morgan, and Milton Berle. He talked about the first time he worked in television on The Sam Levenson Show with Selma Diamond, and his television directorial debut on The Phil Silvers Show. He spoke about his transition to producing, starting with the now-classic series The Andy Griffith Show. Mr. Ruben talked about other television shows he produced including Gomer Pyle, USMC; Sanford and Son; CPO Sharkey; and Matlock.