The Laugh Makers: A Behind-the-Scenes Tribute to Bob Hope’s Incredible Gag Writers

By Robert L. Mills
Foreword by Gary Owens
Produced by Joe Bevilacqua
Read by Robert L. Mills

11.32 Hours 05/01/2013 unabridged
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“In The Laugh Makers, Bob Mills takes us on a delightful, side-splitting journey back to the slapstick sketch comedy of television’s golden age—a long-ago era of variety, song-and-dance, brilliant patter, and a seemingly endless parade of laughs—sprung from the genius of ‘gag men,’ that talented group of wit-blessed wordsmiths to whom the book pays well-deserved homage. The Laugh Makers is a priceless collection of heretofore unpublished recollections revealing untold secrets and goings-on behind the scenes on The Bob Hope Show from Stockholm to Bora Bora, London to Peking. It’s jam-packed with stories [and] anecdotes, his guest stars, and his writers—all from a fondly remembered past that will have you chuckling from start to finish. Bob Mills is well qualified to salute the famous corps of gag men who kept the comedian knee-deep in jokes. These firsthand recollections summon up the final phase of Hope’s career―and the end of the trail for an entire brand of show business.”—Gary Owens, Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In

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Summary

Summary

“In The Laugh Makers, Bob Mills takes us on a delightful, side-splitting journey back to the slapstick sketch comedy of television’s golden age—a long-ago era of variety, song-and-dance, brilliant patter, and a seemingly endless parade of laughs—sprung from the genius of ‘gag men,’ that talented group of wit-blessed wordsmiths to whom the book pays well-deserved homage. The Laugh Makers is a priceless collection of heretofore unpublished recollections revealing untold secrets and goings-on behind the scenes on The Bob Hope Show from Stockholm to Bora Bora, London to Peking. It’s jam-packed with stories [and] anecdotes, his guest stars, and his writers—all from a fondly remembered past that will have you chuckling from start to finish. Bob Mills is well qualified to salute the famous corps of gag men who kept the comedian knee-deep in jokes. These firsthand recollections summon up the final phase of Hope’s career―and the end of the trail for an entire brand of show business.”—Gary Owens, Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“At long last, a book that pays homage to television’s unsung heroes—those wit wizards who face a blank page every day and somehow manage to create something John Barrymore claimed was more difficult than dying: laughter. In his book, Bob Mills not only keeps the reader laughing, but—like a comedic Houdini revealing his secrets—shows us how it’s done. The Laugh Makers is a must-read for anyone even thinking about a career in comedy.” Shelley Berman, actor, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Boston Legal
“In the ’70s and ’80s, Hollywood Squares often taped next to The Bob Hope Show studio. Judging from the laughter we often heard in the hallway, I always suspected Hope’s writers were having a great time over there and now I know why. The Laugh Makers is a fascinating, heartwarming, and revealing book on the day-to-day life of comedy writers working for a legend. It also revives long-ago memories of an era that was so much fun and that I’m sure we’ll never see again.” Peter Marshall, former host of Hollywood Squares
“The author and I have lots in common—we’re both San Franciscans, our comedy careers were launched by a KSFO disc jockey named Don Sherwood, and we’re fellow college alumns. Now that I’ve laughed my way through his backstage stories and priceless recollections of a long and exciting tenure on the road with Bob Hope, I can finally say definitively and without fear of contradiction that Bob Mills is the second-funniest graduate of SF State.” Ronnie Schell, actor, Good Morning, World and Gomer Pyle, USMC
“In The Laugh Makers, Bob Mills takes us on an exciting backstage journey from London to Stockholm, Bora Bora to Beijing, covering thousands of miles and nearly as many laughs. Today, Mills has more mileage on him than Bob Hope’s luggage. His book is a real gem that’s got sex, violence, intrigue—and the second page is good, too. Actually, that’s a joke Mills wrote for Hope, but I couldn’t resist. I have to confess, I read the book in one sitting—stuck in traffic on the 405.” Pat Harrington, actor, The Steve Allen Show and One Day at a Time
“It’s hard to praise the work of a longtime friend without sounding like you’re angling for a free lunch. But Mills has really created something unique here—an accurate, compellingly readable, hilarious, and heartwarming inside view of one of America’s most popular variety shows, its legendary host, and its guest stars. And I say that not because I got a free advance copy. Actually, it wasn’t from the author—a hotel where I was staying ran out of Gideon Bibles.” Chuck McCann, actor, The Projectionist and Boston Legal
“When I was first introduced to the author, I said, ‘How do you do?’ and he replied, ‘I make a nice living.’ Though an incurable smart ass, Bob Mills is one of the warmest, most talented members of our comedy fraternity—attributes clearly evident on every page of his landmark homage to Bob Hope and his gag writers. So buy his book … please. He’s gotten used to that nice living.” Jack Reilly, Mr. Carlin on The Bob Newhart Show, Stu Pickles on The Rugrats

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Robert L. Mills JD

Robert L. Mills, a native of San Francisco, served in the Navy after high school and graduated from San Francisco State University in 1962 and the University of California Hastings Law in 1965.  He practiced law for ten years before moving to Hollywood to write for television. Mills worked on The Dinah Shore Show and The Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts before joining Bob Hope as a staff writer in 1977. He has also written for the Los Angeles Times, and in 1999 he became an enrichment lecturer for Crystal Cruise, performing shows based on his experiences with Hope aboard numerous cruise ships. He lives in Studio City, California, with his wife Shelley.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction/Humor
Runtime: 11.32
Audience: Adult
Language: English