Bob Booker Collection

Finding aid created by Writers Guild Foundation Archive staff using RecordEXPRESS
Writers Guild Foundation Archive
7000 West Third Street
Los Angeles, California 90048
(323) 782-4680

Descriptive Summary

Title: Bob Booker Collection
Dates: 1973-2003
Collection Number: WGF-MS-028
Creator/Collector: Booker, Bob, 1931-
Extent: 4.8 linear feet
Repository: Writers Guild Foundation Archive
Los Angeles, California 90048
Abstract: The Bob Booker Collection, 1973-2003, consists of scripts, production material and audiovisual material for various primetime television specials and variety shows he wrote for. The bulk of this collection consists of scripts for the NBC sitcom Out of This World, which he created.
Language of Material: English


Available by appointment only.

Publication Rights

The responsibility to secure copyright and publication permission rests with the researcher.

Preferred Citation

Bob Booker Collection. Writers Guild Foundation Archive

Acquisition Information

Donated by Bob Booker, December 14, 2007

Biography/Administrative History

Born on August 1, 1931, Bob Booker is best known as a writer, producer, and director of television. He began his career in 1962 as a writer and producer of the Grammy Award Winning comedy album The First Family, a satire of President Kennedy and his family, starring Vaughn Meader. This project marked the beginning of a long-time collaboration with George Foster. Booker soon turned to network television and in 1966, began working on The Garry Moore Show. He was also a contributor to the Ed Sullivan Show as well as other variety programs. He went into feature films for a few years before returning to television in 1973, working on a television variety series, The NBC Follies, which aired for 13 episodes. In 1974, he partnered with Burt Reynolds and produced two network pilot specials: Cotton Club '75 and The Wayne Newton Special. Over the next several years, Booker continued to create pilots and specials that included The Monty Hall Sea World Special, The Saturday Preview Revue and a pilot for a Charo television series. Later, in 1977, Paramount hired him to create television specials to promote their feature film releases such as American Hot Wax, Foul Play and Grease. In 1984, Booker returned to creating television series, starting with an ABC comedy hosted by Steve Lawrence and Don Rickles titled Foul-Ups, Bleeps, & Blunders, which focused on outtakes from popular television programs and movies. Booker then created the NBC teen fantasy sitcom Out of This World starring Maureen Flannigan, Donna Pescow and Burt Reynolds as the voice of the alien, Troy. The series premiered in 1987 and went on to air for four years. Bob Booker retired and is currently residing in Carmel, California.

Scope and Content of Collection

The Bob Booker Collection, 1973-2003, consists of television scripts and production material as well as audiovisual material. Series I: Television Series, 1973-1991 is comprised of scripts for two television series - The NBC Follies in 1973 and Out of This World 1989-1991. The NBC Follies was a variety show starring Sammy Davis Jr. and a rotating cast of guest stars. The bulk of Series I are teleplays of Out of This World, seasons 2-4. Series II: Television Specials and Varieties, 1974-1979 is comprised of Bob Booker’s television specials and variety show writings. Subseries A contains scripts and production material of televisions specials he wrote, housed in specially bound and labeled binders. The Monty Hall SeaWorld Special was removed from the original binder and rehoused in a separate folder. The Wayne Newton Special was also removed from the original binder and rehoused in a separate folder. Subseries B is a small collection of unpublished Burlesque and Vaudeville comedy sketches amassed by Bob Booker but written and/or dictated by Ben Blue and Herbie Faye. Series III: Audiovisual Material, 1973-2003 consists of DVD recordings of Booker’s various series and specials, including all 96 episodes of Out of This World. Most episodes of The NBC Follies are also included in the collection. “The Best of Sammy Davis Jr.” is a compilation of sketches and live performances of Sammy Davis Jr. from his time on The NBC Follies. “Behind the Scenes in Hollywood” is a two part special presentation hosted by Bob Booker and produced by The Museum of Television & Radio. The first volume was filmed in Beverly Hills in 2002 and the second volume was filmed a year later in New York in 2003. This production was a compilation of notable film and television footage he had collected over the years. The rest of the audiovisual materials are the televised specials Booker worked on.

Indexing Terms

Television specials
Variety shows (Television programs)
Television scripts
Out of this world (Television program) Foul play (Motion picture) Grease (Motion picture)
Television writers
Television producers and directors