American Masters – Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You
Premieres nationwide Tuesday, October 25 at 9:00 p.m. on PBS (check local listings)
Original Interviews (in alphabetical order)
John Amos – actor, played James Evans, Sr., the father on Good Times
George Clooney – actor, producer, activist; Clooney got his big break on Lear’s short-lived TV sitcom, coincidentally titled E/R, as well as a reoccurring guest role on The Facts of Life.
Alan Horn – chairman of Disney; Horn got his start in Hollywood when Jerry Perenchio hired him to help run Tandem Productions. Lear eventually handed the responsibility of running All in the Family and several other shows to Horn.
Michael Keegan – president of People for the American Way
Ben Lear – one of Norman Lear’s six children
Kate Lear – one of Norman Lear’s six children
Lyn Lear – Norman Lear’s wife
Bill Moyers – veteran journalist and political commentator; Moyers and Lear met during an interview for Moyers’ Creativity show in 1981. Moyers has called Lear a brother separated at birth.
Jerry Perenchio – worked for decades with Norman Lear to run and manage the business dealings of Tandem Productions and Embassy Television
Rob Reiner – actor, producer, writer, director, activist; Norman Lear discovered 8-year-old Reiner’s comedic ability as he was playing jacks with Lear’s daughter and doing impressions. Reiner played Mike Stivic in All in the Family. Later, Lear funded Reiner’s first film, This is Spinal Tap, as well as The Sure Thing, Stand By Me and The Princess Bride.
Phil Rosenthal – television writer and producer who is best known as the creator, writer and executive producer for the sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond
Russell Simmons – founded Def Jam music label and fashion line Phat Farm; Simmons is a life-long fan of Lear’s TV shows
Archival Interviews (in alphabetical order)
Bea Arthur – star of Maude
Louise Lasser – star of Mary Hartman, Marty Harman
Frances Lear – Norman Lear’s second wife
Carroll O’Connor – star of All in the Family
Esther Rolle – star of Good Times
Bud Yorkin – Norman Lear’s business partner, who co-founded Tandem Productions and helped to create All in the Family, Maude, Good Times, The Jeffersons, and Sanford and Son