"Winning the Emmy on 'Cheers' was such a validation of the show. We'd put so much of ourselves into it... [Someone had written] her child was critically ill...one of the worst nights of her life. She needed something to distract her so she turned on 'Cheers' and for a half hour felt better. Lifted her out of it. And that was a source of inspiration to us for a long time, that a silly little 30-minute sitcom can do something good for people sometimes."
About This Interview
In their four-hour Archive interview, Glen and Les Charles were each interviewed in a solo half-hour session, and in a joint three-hour session. The writing-partners/brothers talk about their early years growing up near Las Vegas, Nevada and their decision in the mid-'70s to try their hand at freelance writing for television. They discuss selling their first script (to M*A*S*H) and breaking into staff writing at MTM Productions, where they worked as writer-producers on Phyllis and the final season of The Bob Newhart Show. They recall other writing assignments on The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Betty White Show, and detail working with the cast and crew of the hit series, Taxi. The pair talk about both writing and producing the ABC run of Taxi (the show would run a final season on NBC) and chronicle the creation of the series Cheers (with James Burrows). They outline their roles as producers and later executive producers of the show, discuss cast changes, and recall memorable episodes from the show's eleven year run. Gary Rutkowski conducted the interview on December 8, 2003 in Los Angeles, CA.