Wednesday, March 24

the odd couple -more

"Born in the Bronx on July 4, 1927, Marvin Neil Simon grew up in Manhattan and for a short time attended NYU and the University of Denver. His most significant writing job came in the early 1950s when he joined the staff of YOUR SHOW OF SHOWS, a landmark live television comedy series. Sid Caesar’s hilariously cutting-edge program had some of the best comic minds in television working for it, including Mel Brooks, Woody Allen, Larry Gelbart, and Carl Reiner. “I knew,” said Simon, “when I walked into YOUR SHOW OF SHOWS, that this was the most talented group of writers that up until that time had ever been assembled together.” By the 1960s, Simon had begun to concentrate on writing plays for Broadway.

Simon’s brother, Danny, who also worked on YOUR SHOW OF SHOWS, played a major role in his writing. In fact, it was Danny who provided the inspiration for one of Simon’s most enduring hits. After his divorce, Danny moved in with another divorced man, and this situation became the set-up for “The Odd Couple”.

Though Danny [Simon] had begun writing the story himself, he reached a block and eventually handed it off to [Neil] Simon who soon made it a smash on Broadway. Starring Jack Lemon and Walter Mathau, the 1968 film version was equally successful and prompted a popular television series." -via PBS.

You can read most of the play via googlebooks.