You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Comedy writer Dee Caruso dies

Penned 'Get Smart,' 'The Monkees' episodes

Dee Caruso, a writer for TV shows including “Get Smart,” “The Monkees” and “The Smother Brothers Show,” died of pneumonia on Sunday, May 27, in Brentwood, Calif. He was 83.

Caruso began writing material for nightclub comedians such as Don Adams and Martin & Rossi. He and his writing partner, Gerald Gardner, were frequent writers on “Get Smart” and “The Monkees,” contributed to “The Smothers Brothers Show” and produced “The Red Skelton Hour.” They also penned specials for Jack Benny, Jerry Lewis, Don Rickles, Debbie Reynolds, Robin Williams and Bill Cosby and scripted an unusual gameshow, “Screen Test,” which starred “Get Smart” leading man Adams.

Caruso and Gardner also wrote a few feature films, Disney’s “The World’s Greatest Athlete” and Warner Bros.’ “Which Way to the Front” and “Doin’ Time,” as well as telepics including “How to Break Up a Happy Divorce,” which they also produced, and “Break Up.”

They also penned episodes of “Gilligan’s Island,” “The Ghost and Mrs. Muir,” “The Bill Cosby Show,” “Happy Days” and “What’s Happening.”

Earlier, Caruso and Gardner were on the Emmy-nominated writing staff for “That Was the Week That Was” with David Frost.

Caruso co-taught a class with his wife, Sandra, “What’s Funny, What’s Not” at UCLA Extension for 10 years and after that became a professor of screenwriting at UCLA School of Theater, Film & Television for more than 20 years.

He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Sandra Caruso.

Services will be held Sunday, June 3, at 3 p.m. at Pierce Brothers Westwood Memorial Park, 1218 Glendon Ave., Los Angeles.

More TV

  • AMERICAN HORROR STORY: 1984 -- Pictured:

    'American Horror Story' Recap: '1984's' 'Final Girl' Revealed

    SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “Final Girl,” the finale episode of “American Horror Story: 1984.” The final episode of “American Horror Story: 1984” is appropriately called “The Final Girl,” a reference to the term given to that one (usually virginal) young woman who manages to survive the massacre in most [...]

  • Lady Antebellum and Halsey53rd Annual CMA

    Halsey Puts the Extra Lady in Lady Antebellum in Elegant CMA Awards Medley

    Halsey is increasingly proving herself a woman for all seasons in her varied TV appearances and awards show collaborations, and Wednesday’s CMA Awards telecast was no exception, as she ingratiated herself into the country vocal trio Lady Antebellum for some flawless four-part harmony on a medley of two of their respective hits. She and Lady [...]

  • The Bachelor

    TV News Roundup: ABC Announces Premiere Date for 'The Bachelor' Season 24

    In today’s TV news roundup, ABC announced the premiere date for “The Bachelor” Season 24, while Showtime set a date for Eddie Griffin’s new comedy special. CASTING Freeform announced that it has cast the pilot for “Last Summer.“ Chiara Aurelia will star as Jeanette and Mika Abdalla will star as Kate in this “unconventional thriller” about [...]

  • Mandalorian Pose Stranger Things

    'The Mandalorian,' 'Pose,' 'Stranger Things' Among Nominees for Top TV Publicity Campaign

    The Disney Plus series “The Mandalorian,” three other streaming series, and two FX series have been nominated by Hollywood union publicists for the year’s top publicity campaign. “Catch 22,” “Fosse/Verdon,” “Pose,” “Stranger Things” and “When They See Us” picked up the other nominations. The nominees for the International Cinematographers Guild Publicists’ Maxwell Weinberg Award for [...]

  • Paradigm's Liz Morentin portrait session in

    Paradigm's Executive VP of Communications Liz Morentin to Exit Agency

    Liz Morentin is stepping down from her role as executive vice president of communications at Paradigm, Variety has learned. According to an individual with knowledge of the situation, Morentin’s departure was amicable and she will stay on at the agency through the end of the year to help with the transition. No replacement has been named at [...]

  • Writers vs Agents Packaging War WGA

    Abrams Artists Agency Signs Writers Guild Deal

    In a major triumph for the Writers Guild of America, the Abrams Artists Agency has signed the WGA’s Code of Conduct, allowing the agency to return to representing WGA members again. Chairman Adam Bold made the announcement Wednesday, saying that the agency wants to put its clients back to work. He also noted WGA West [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content