Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Theodore J. Flicker Collection
View entire collection guide What's This?
PDF (78.24 Kb) HTML
Search this collection
Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Biography/Administrative History
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Theodore J. Flicker Collection
    Dates: 1965-1985
    Collection Number: WGF-MS-049
    Creator/Collector: Flicker, Theodore J., 1930-2014
    Extent: 4.5 linear feet
    Repository: 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.

    Publication Rights

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

    Preferred Citation

    Theodore J. Flicker Collection. Writers Guild Foundation Archive

    Acquisition Information

    Donated by Barbara Flicker, September 2, 2015.

    Biography/Administrative History

    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 home. 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 Flicker.

    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.

    Indexing Terms

    Made-For-TV Movies
    Television Scripts
    Barney Miller (Television program) Banacek Night gallery (Television program)
    Television writers