Bill Bixby Remembered by Friends & Co-Workers – including Our Own LB

Back in the dim, dark 1970s, before most TVWriter™ visitors were even imagined, let alone born, our founder, Larry Brody, got his first TV writing staff job on a little-remembered series called The Magician.

At the beginning of the 2018 holiday season while Team TVWriter™ was beginning its vacation, LB was contacted by entertainment journalist Ed Gross and interviewed for a piece Ed was writing for Closer Weekly on the late Bill Bixby, star of The Incredible Hulk (where he shared the titular role with Lou Ferrigno), The Courtship of Eddie’s Father, My Favorite Martian, and several more series including, yep, that self-same The Magician.

Now completed, Ed’s perceptive view of Bixby’s life and work is available for your reading pleasure on the Closer Weekly site, and, thanks to Ed’s generosity, you can also read LB’s bit right here:

American actor Bill Bixby (1934 – 1993) as Anthony Blake in ‘The Magician’, circa 1973. (Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images)

‘The Magician’ (1973-74) by Ed Gross

With The Courtship of Eddie’s Father ending in 1972, the following year Bill on the part of Anthony “Tony” Blake, described by Wikipedia as a playboy philanthropist who used his skills to solve difficult crimes as needed.

“This was supposed to be Bill Bixby’s breakthrough into dramatic television. Fresh off The Courtship of Eddie’s Father, Bixby was considered a top audience draw when The Magician premiered in 1973,” Ed [Robertson] writes at “Both NBC and Paramount Pictures had high hopes for this light action drama about a troubleshooting illusionist named Anthony Blake. But fate intervened, in the form of a Writers Guild strike in the spring of ’73 that threw a wrench in production schedules throughout television… The strike didn’t settle until late in the summer, effectively wiping out the early months of prep time that can often make or break a new series.”