Monday, December 18, 2006
Not long ago I did a series on TV moguls Aaron Spelling and Quinn Martin. Today I am starting a series on Paul Henning. Mr. Henning was from Independence, Missouri. He once met future President Harry S. Truman who advised him to become a lawyer. He did go to Law School but his real desire was to be a singer. He was a singer on some local radio programs. When one didn’t have the money to hire a writer to for fillers between songs Paul started writing for them. From there his writing career took off. He eventually got jobs writing for network radio programs for Fibber McGee and Molly and the Burns and Allen Show. Eventually he wrote for TV programs like The Real McCoys the Andy Griffith Show and also produced The Bob Cummings Show. On many of those programs he met many actors who would later be on the programs that he created. Many of those relied on his Midwestern humor that he grew up with in Missouri. He also wrote the scripts for the films Lover Come Back, Bedtime Story and co-writer on Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. The TV shows he created were The Beverly Hillbillies, Petticoat Junction and Green Acres. They were some of the biggest hit comedies to come out of the 1960’s.