March has been a great month for the Prime Time TV Club; between finalizing projects and wrapping up thesis pilots, students hosted a prominent TV director and casting director.  Read on to find out more:

On March 5 half-hour comedy director Gary Shimokawa, whose credits include TV classics like All in the Family, The Golden Girls, and dozens of other hit shows, shared stories from the beginning of his career (as a floor manager for local news in Los Angeles) right up to today.


Shimokawa screened the legendary All in the Family episode where Sammy Davis Jr. kisses Archie Bunker – and talked about what it was like to be on the floor for what may be the longest live audience laugh in TV history, a full 50 seconds of howling laughter.

Then, on March 12, the TV Club got an inside look at how casting works in prime time TV. 

Sheila Guthrie, independent casting director and former VP of Casting and Talent at CBS/Paramount TV, gave students an up close, behind-the-scenes look at putting together the casts for Numb3rs, NCIS, Cheers, Frasier, and many other hit shows. 

For instance, on Frasier, the actress originally cast to play Roz, Frasier’s radio show producer, was Lisa Kudrow.  She was replaced during rehearsals, which was devastating…but meant she was available to be in another show the next season…

…a little show called Friends!