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Variety Critic — Take A Bow

Gelbart_larryWho listens to his critics? Larry Gelbart — that’s who. I phoned to congratulate him on being announced as an upcoming inductee into the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Hall Of Fame. But the conversation quickly switched — or rather, I switched it — to a discussion about “Better Late,” the play he’s written with Craig Wright that is now warming up at the Northlight Theater outside of Chicago under the direction of RJ Jones. Its run was extended to May 18 and of course the hope is to make it to B’way. Believe it or not, Gelbart and Wright took to heart the week-young review of their show by Variety‘s Steven Oxman. “It was a very good review,” said Gelbart, who volunteered he’s already written additions and changes — including scenes based on Oxman’s criticisms and suggestions in the review. Now all Gelbart has to do is show it to Wright who is busy getting his series “Dirty, Sexy Money” back on the air.

I also phoned Sherwood Schwartz to congratulate him on his upcoming induction into the TV Hall Of Fame. The 91 years-young Schwartz recently recovered from a five-week bout of intestinal virus. He was stricken the day after he received his star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame, though it didn’t stop him for long. Schwartz continued to work on his idea for a reality game show. He calls it, “Is Anybody Home?” Sherwood said, “I’ve been working on it for 35-40 years. That’s the good thing about being a writer. You can work — even if you’re dying!”

And speaking of the Hollywood Walk of Fame — Michael Eisner receives his star next to the El Capitan Theater on Friday, April 23, with Disney’s Bob Iger and John Travolta participating in the ceremony. The Walt Disney Co. sponsored Eisner’s star. Walt Disney’s star is at 7021 Hollywood Blvd. On June 26, Brian Keith receives his star — posthumously. His fans nominated-sponsored him.

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