Marshall’s ‘Happy Days’

(Photo: Henry Winkler and Ron Howard in ‘Happy Days)

At 8 pm ET/PT tonight, May 12, ABC will air The Happy Days of Garry Marshall, a two-hour tribute to the prolific director, producer, writer, and actor in both television and movies who passed away four years ago.

Guests will include Pretty Woman’s Richard Gere, Hector Elizondo and Julia Roberts; Happy Days’ Ron Howard, Don Most, Marion Ross, Anson Williams and Henry Winkler; Laverne & Shirley’s Cindy Williams, David Lander and Michael McKean; Mork & Mindy‘s Pam Dawber; Beaches’ Barbara Hershey (“Beaches”); and The Princess Diaries’ Julie Andrews and Anne Hathaway (and Elizondo).

Here’s The Savvy Screener’s guide to sampling all of Garry Marshall’s talents:

Big-Screen Director

The Princess Diaries (2001) is now available to Disney+ subscribers and Beaches (1988) to Amazon Prime subscribers. Both movies, along with Pretty Woman (1990), can also be rented from $2.99 at transactional sites like Google Play, iTunes and Vudu.

Small-Screen Producer

CBS All Access subscribers can stream all five seasons (114 episodes) of the original 1970-1975 version of The Odd Couple, along with 14 episodes from season two of Happy Days (1975-1976), both of which ran originally on ABC.

Mork & Mindy, which also ran originally on ABC (91 episodes, four seasons, 1978-1982), can now be seen over-the-air on Antenna TV, weekdays at 5 am and 5:30 am ET, and Saturdays at 7 am and 7:30 am.


As a showrunner before the term was ever coined, Marshall knew how to deal with TV network executives. That experience certainly lent a degree of authenticity to probably his most visible acting role: playing network president Stan Lansing in 24 episodes of the original Murphy Brown, the hugely popular series that ran a full decade (1988-1998) on CBS.

Clip: Garry Marshall as a hospitalized Stan Lansing in ‘Murphy Brown’:

Murphy Brown can now be seen over-the-air on Antenna TV, weeknights at 3 am ET and Sundays at midnight.


Marshall started his TV career in the early 1960s, co-writing many popular shows with Jerry Belson. The following 1964 episode of CBS’ The Dick Van Dyke Show was nominated for a Writers Guild of America award:

(Note: The above is an updated version of a previously published article.)

About Les Luchter

Les Luchter is a former managing editor of Multichannel News, editor-in-chief of Cable Marketing, and news editor of Broadcast Week.

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