Scope and Content of Collection
Title: Stan Dreben Papers
Collection Number: WGF-MS-097
Dreben, Stan (1918-1980)
Extent: 7 Boxes, 6.5 linear feet
Writers Guild Foundation Archive
Los Angeles, California 90048
Abstract: The Stan Dreben Papers, 1950-1979 and undated, contain scripts, sketches and development materials created by comedy writer
Stan Dreben. The bulk of the collection represents Dreben’s work in television and includes produced and unproduced game
shows, variety programs, specials and episodic series. In addition, the collection consists of manuscripts and development
materials for film and theatrical projects, as well as jokes and skits written for popular comedy performers.
Language of Material: English
Majority of materials stored off site. One week advance notice required for retrieval.
The responsibility to secure copyright and publication permission rests with the researcher.
Stan Dreben Papers. Writers Guild Foundation Archive
Donated by David Dreben on 2/22/2018.
Stan Dreben (1918–1980) was a comedy writer and producer for over 35 years, primarily known for incorporating jokes and other
comedic material into television game shows, such as The Hollywood Squares, Funny You Should Ask, Treasure Hunt and Letters
to Laugh-In. His writing credits comprised popular television variety shows, specials and situation comedies, including The
Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts, The Andy Griffith Show, McHale’s Navy and The Facts of Life. In addition to his television’s
work, Dreben developed several motion picture projects, plays and musical revues. Throughout his career he wrote material
for many of the entertainment industry’s top comedians, namely Red Skelton, Milton Berle, Joey Bishop, Jan Murray, Jackie
Gleason and Phyllis Diller. Dreben died February 16, 1980 at his home in Northridge, California at the age of 61.
Scope and Content of Collection
The Stan Dreben Papers are organized into five series and predominately reflect Dreben’s career in the 1960s and 1970s, demonstrating
his varied work writing comedy and jokes for popular television entertainers. Series I: Television Game Shows 1952-1979 and
undated, includes scripts and shooting details for produced game shows, such as contestant evaluations, quiz questions, jokes,
celebrity guest information and competition scenarios. Titles include The Amateur’s Guide to Love, Bedtime Stories, Funny
You Should Ask, Jackpot Bowling Starring Milton Berle and The Newlywed Game. This series also consists of numerous ideas and
treatments for game show projects, conceived by Dreben and other collaborators. Series II: Television Variety Shows, Specials
and Series 1955-1979 and undated, represents other television genres that Dreben worked in. Materials primarily date from
the 1960s and early 1970s and comprise completed scripts, drafts and other writing for produced shows, some of which Dreben
is named as a writer. Titles include The Morning Show with Dick Van Dyke, The Andy Griffith Show, Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts,
The Dean Martin Show, The Pat Boone Show, The Red Skelton Hour, Temperatures Rising and The Facts of Life. Also contained
in this series are several folders dedicated to outlines, ideas, treatments and scripts for pilots and other unproduced television
projects. Series III: Film and Theatrical Projects 1973-1978 and undated, consists of screenplays and story outlines for
motion pictures, as well as scripts for stage plays and musical revues. This series consists of mostly unproduced work. Series
IV: Joke Material 1950-1976 and undated, primarily includes comedy writing for unknown projects; a few sketches for Milton
Berle, Jackie Gleason, Phyllis Diller and other comedians; joke files alphabetized by subject; and 17 issues of comedy newsletters,
The Comedian (Fun-Master Monthly) and Gay’s Gags, which are compilations of jokes, humorous stories, one-liners and satire.
Series V: Professional Papers 1968-1978 and undated, contains miscellaneous items related to Dreben’s career in the entertainment
industry: resumes, published interviews and souvenir theater programs. Also included in this series are materials that indicate
possible research interests, such as personality and Rorschach inkblot tests.
Television game shows
Variety shows (Television programs)