ABOUT | 2011 PRESS RELEASES,
Legendary Television Producer and Writer Aaron Spelling's Archive Donated to Boston University
(Boston)- The archive of acclaimed television producer Aaron Spelling has been donated to the Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center at Boston University by his wife, producer and bestselling author Candy Spelling.
The son of Polish Jewish immigrants, Aaron Spelling was born in Dallas, Texas in 1923. Spelling served in the United States Army Air Force as a war correspondent during World War II and graduated from Southern Methodist University in 1949. He entered Hollywood as a script writer and actor. He got his break as a producer working for Dick Powell's FourStar Productions during the 1950s. Another break came when actor Alan Ladd asked Spelling to review a script; Spelling worked all night and rewrote the screenplay for the 1960 film One Foot in Hell, and landed a screenwriting credit.
After forming Thomas-Spelling Productions with Danny Thomas, Spelling produced several successful television shows, including The Mod Squad, The Rookies and Charlie's Angels. In 1976, he released the hit ABC movie The Boy in the Plastic Bubble starring a young John Travolta. In 1972, he created Aaron Spelling Productions, which went public in 1986 as Spelling Entertainment.
Spelling became one of television's most prolific producers. His many successes include such iconic television series as Beverly Hills 90210, Melrose Place, Starsky and Hutch, The Love Boat, Fantasy Island, Dynasty, Twin Peaks and 7th Heaven. He produced the Emmy Award-winning HBO miniseries And the Band Played On and the television movie, Day One. Not content to limit himself to television, Spelling also produced many feature films, such as Soapdish, California Split, Mr. Mom. 'night, Mother, Loose Cannons, and 1999's The Mod Squad.
Spelling died on June 23, 2006 after suffering a severe stroke.
The Gotlieb Center's Aaron Spelling Collection contains Spelling's personal library of bound scripts of television shows that he worked on in the capacity of creator, writer and producer. There are hundreds of volumes containing over sixty television programs and several dozen scripts of made-for-television feature-length films produced by Spelling Entertainment. The Collection contains files from several of Mr. Spelling's most recent television productions as well as material pertaining to his charity work in the Los Angeles area.
The collection holds many photographs, including shots of Aaron Spelling as a young boy in Dallas, Texas, Spelling as a student at Southern Methodist University and as a young actor and writer in the 1950's. Several hundred photographs show the stars of many of Mr. Spelling's television productions including Charlie's Angels, The Mod Squad, Dynasty, Fantasy Island, Beverly Hills 90210, Melrose Place, Charmed and 7th Heaven.
Mr. Spelling's accomplishments are represented by many awards and honors bestowed upon him over his decades-long career in the entertainment industry and his roles as a civic leader. These honors include fifteen People's Choice Awards, two Golden Globe Awards, the B'Nai Brith Man of the Year Award, several GLAAD Awards and many more.
The Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center at Boston University seeks to capture and document history by collecting the manuscripts from individuals who play significant roles in the fields of journalism, poetry, literature and criticism, dance, music, theatre, film, television, and political and religious movements. The Center strives to preserve the documents and make them readily available to researchers while administering all legal copyrights and restrictions. The Center also presents extensive exhibitions, seminars and tours for students, parents, alumni, various visiting groups and members of the public.