Scope and Content of Collection
Title: Theodore J. Flicker Collection
Collection Number: WGF-MS-049
Flicker, Theodore J., 1930-2014
Extent: 4.5 linear feet
Writers Guild Foundation Archive
Los Angeles, California 90048
Abstract: The Theodore J. Flicker Collection, 1965-1985, contains both writing and directing materials from his career. The bulk of
the collection consists of scripts written by Flicker, most notably the pilot of Barney Miller, as well as episodes of The
Mod Squad, and Nichols. Included are a number of production notebooks from television movies he directed, most notably Guess
Who’s Been Sleeping in My Bed and Where the Ladies Go. The collection also includes many unproduced works written by Flicker,
for both existing series and original projects, including scripts for Columbo and McMillan and Wife.
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 patron.
Theodore J. Flicker Collection. Writers Guild Foundation Archive
Donated by Barbara Flicker, September 2, 2015.
Theodore J. Flicker was a prolific writer and director best known for creating the hit television show Barney Miller in the
late 1970s. Flicker was born in Freehold Borough, New Jersey on June 6, 1930 to Sydney and Rebecca Flicker. After graduating
high school, he studied at Bard College in New York and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. After completing his
studies, Flicker moved to Chicago in 1954, where he worked in improvisational theater. He helped create an improvisational
theater group called Compass Players, a predecessor to Second City, and started a second troupe in St. Louis where he mentored
celebrated improv performers Elaine May, Mike Nichols and Del Close. Flicker worked in theater for a number of years and moved
to Hollywood in the early 60s. He married Barbara Joyce Perkins in 1966.
Flicker established himself as both a writer and director during the 1960s, directing episodes of The Dick Van Dyke Show and
I Dream of Jeannie and co-writing the film THE TROUBLEMAKER in 1964. Flicker is most known for the 1967 film THE PRESIDENT’S
ANAYLST, a satire poking fun at American institutions including the FBI. The film was nominated for a WGA Award in 1968 and
has since gained a cult following,
In the 1970s, Flicker continued writing for television shows like Streets of San Francisco, The Mod Squad, Banyon and many
others. In addition to his writing works, he directed a number of television movies, including Just a Little Inconvenience,
The Last of the Good Guys, Guess Who’s Been Sleeping In My Bed and Where the Ladies Go.
In the mid-1970s he co-created the sitcom Barney Miller with Danny Arnold. Originally titled “My Husband the Detective,” Flicker’s
agent convinced him to work with Arnold and together they created Barney Miller, which ran for 8 seasons. Arnold and Flicker
had a falling out after the first year and Flicker left the show.
Flicker and his wife moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico in 1986, where he left behind filmmaking and began his new passion for
sculpting. He became both a collector and a practitioner and often stated that sculpting was one of the most satisfying creative
outlets in his life. He became a widely recognized sculptor in the Santa Fe area and had a four-acre sculpture garden at his
In addition to his sculpting, Flicker also self-published a book entitled The Good American in 1997.
Flicker died of complications from a lung infection on September 30, 2014. He is survived by his wife of 48 years, Barbara
Scope and Content of Collection
The Theodore J. Flicker Collection is organized into 3 series. Series I: Television Scripts, 1971-1985 is comprised of produced
episodic television dating from 1971 to 1985 and is divided into two sub-series. Subseries A: Episodic Television, 1971-1980,
contains episodes written by Flicker for various television shows including Barney Miller, Banyon, The Mod Squad, Night Gallery
and several others. Subseries B: Directed Works, 1973-1985 contains scripts and production notebooks for MOWs that Flicker
directed including Guess Who’s Been Sleeping In My Bed, Here We Go Again, Where the Ladies Go and several others.
Series II: Unproduced Works, 1968-1982 is comprised of Flicker’s unpublished scripts for both film and television and is divided
into two sub-series. Subseries A: Unproduced Television, 1970-1982, contains scripts from unproduced episodes of existing
television shows and original ideas, including Columbo, The Bucket Brigade, Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, Doctor Bravo!,
Shaft and several others. Subseries B: Unproduced Film, 1968-1982, contains scripts for a number of unproduced original films
including The Crowded Bed, Doctors, Fire on the Mountain, The Gravy Train Don’t Stop Here No More, Henny Penny is a Jewel
Thief, Radioland Murders and many others.
Series III: Professional Papers, 1965-1983, contains numerous items from throughout Flicker’s career including WGA Script
Registration receipts, outlines for two unpublished novels, DVDs for television shows and MOWs directed by Flicker, and production
stills from the set of the MOW Just a Little Inconvenience.
Barney Miller (Television program)
Night gallery (Television program)