"Thomas Wolfe was my idol, and I modeled myself after Wolfe. And he too grew up in this small town. He was in North Carolina, I in Virginia, but we still had that same southerness of love of the land, love of the people, victim of history, worship of education and writing."
About This Interview
In his four-hour Archive interview, Earl Hamner Jr. talks briefly about his earliest writing credits, for shows such as Today, Wide, Wide World and The United States Steel Hour. Next, he speaks about his experiences writing for the anthology series The Twilight Zone, and discusses each of the episodes he wrote. He recalls the controversy surrounding the television movie Heidi, which he wrote, when it interrupted an important football broadcast. Hamner details his experiences as the creator of the drama series The Waltons and speaks about the creation of the program, the cast, and the show's parallels with his own childhood. He also talks about several of his later series, including Apple's Way, The Young Pioneers, Falcon Crest, Brewster Place and Snowy River: The McGregor Saga. He also describes writing the script for the 1973 film adaptation of E.B. White's beloved Charlotte's Web. Jennifer Howard conducted the interview in Studio City, CA on September 18, 2003.