If like us, you grew up on a steady diet of re-runs of Gilligan’s Island and The Brady Bunch on TBS, then you’ve got Sherwood Schwartz to thank for that. The Emmy award-winning TV veteran, who got his start in radio writing jokes for The Bob Hope Show back in 1939, not only created these classic series; he was also the man responsible for each show’s extremely catchy theme song. Sadly, NPR is reporting that Schwartz died earlier today at 94, after being hospitalized at Cedars Sinai Medical Center last week with an intestinal infection.
Most recently, Schwartz — who remained devoted to his career until the end — was actively involved in bringing a Gilligan’s reboot to the big screen, and reportedly eying Michael Cera for the starring role. “I think writers have become hypnotized by the number of jokes on the page at the expense of character,” he said in a 2000 interview. “When you say the name Gilligan, you know who that is. If a show is good, if it’s written well, you should be able to erase the names of the characters saying the lines and still be able to know who said it. If you can’t do that, the show will fail.”